Can old chocolate chips make you sick?

In this article, we will answer the following question: Can old chocolate chips make you sick? We will talk about chocolate’s expiration date and whether it is safe to consume it after it is out of date.

Can old chocolate chips make you sick?

It is unlikely that eating old chocolate chips will make you sick, but they will probably have lost their flavor and characteristics. Generally speaking, dark chocolate, kept in good condition, can last for a year. The time for milk chocolate and white chocolate is less. 

These times are only for pure chocolates but now think of chocolates that contain nuts where their optimal period is even shorter. Chocolate chips are the most delicate among chocolates, mainly due to their ingredients, which affect their preservation and duration.

Old chocolate chips and fat-bloom

Have you ever discovered that the chocolate that you have stored at home has white spots? This effect is called fat-bloom and can occur when making the chocolate or due to poor preservation of it.

Fat-bloom happens when the cocoa butter rises to the chocolate’s surface after being subjected to more than 30ºC. If the chocolate has been tempered poorly, these stains can appear from the first moment. 

On the other hand, if when you bought it it was fine and they came out later, it is because it has been subjected to high temperatures. If you want to store the chocolate chips correctly, we show you how to do it on our blog.

The fact that fat-blooms or those white spots appear does not mean that the chocolate chip is bad, although it is much less attractive. To prevent this from happening, it is best to keep the chocolate at the temperature we indicated earlier, between 15 and 18 degrees, and to consume it as soon as possible after buying it.

Let’s say that it has a lot to do with the type of chocolate in question, and the conditions in which it is kept, which we will see how they should be, so that life is as long as possible.

Other FAQs about Chocolate which you may be interested in.

Does chocolate go bad?

Does white chocolate have milk?

Can hot chocolate go bad?

What is the expiration date of chocolate chips?

Firstly, it would be good to separate it by types of chocolate chips … so if it is:

Dark chocolate chips, which are usually without milk or anything dairy: these are the ones with the most extended life since the absence of dairy means that they can be kept well for up to 2 years unopened, from the day they are made.

If we open the package, it is also important to see how we preserve it later, because we bear in mind that a large percentage of chocolate is fat, cocoa, and fats absorb all the smells and flavors that surround them. But well preserved, it would have no problem of being in good condition to taste one more year still open.

White and milk chocolate chips: here things change, due to the presence of dairy. Let’s say that a rough rule of thumb would be to divide the time of dark chocolate in half, that is, one year unopened and approximately half a year open and well preserved.

It’s not really that there is an exact rule of how long it is not like other products in the case of chocolate. It is not a crisis, because what really happens when it has expired? 

Well, as in the case of coffee, infusions and teas or honey, it is not that you will get sick if you eat it, but you will not enjoy it in the optimal conditions to be able to experience the best of each tablet, and its nuances of flavor in fullness.

Let’s say the flavor becomes flatter, even if it is well preserved, and if there were nuts or other products inside, these have probably evolved as well, and perhaps the fats have become rancid and the consistencies have changed. But in any case, in the case of tablets, as there are no liquids inside, there will not be an environment for bacteria to develop and with them, a fermentation.

So that the expiration date shows us the deadline to taste it in the best conditions. My experience is that the fresher it is, the richer it is, still well preserved, because I notice that there are flavor changes as soon as it has been opened.

But what has been said, how to preserve it in the best way? In a place that is preferably cool and dry, as humidity and chocolate are incompatible. Between 16-20 degrees Celsius is ideal. If possible, in hermetic containers, in their packaging. In this way, we will prevent the chocolate chips from absorbing unwanted odors.

The refrigerator would only be in cases where the alternative is worse, that it is very hot,  and in this case, well wrapped and hermetically sealed, since the condensation of odors in a refrigerator can be very interesting and our chocolate could taste at the most various things. 

The bottom line

In this article, we answered the following question: Can old chocolate chips make you sick? We talked about chocolate’s expiration date and whether chocolate is safe to consume after it is out of date.

In most cases, eating old chocolate chips will not make you sick, however, their quality, flavor, and texture will decrease after a while. Among chocolates, chocolate chips are the most delicate, mainly due to their ingredients, which affect their preservation and duration.

To avoid getting sick with a foodborne illness, it is best to consume chocolate chips as soon as possible. Yummy!

If you have any questions or comments for us, please let us know.


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.