In this brief article, we will answer the question, “does Nesquik go bad?”, and will let you in on the tips and tricks to store Nesquik properly so you can enjoy it for years to come!
Does Nesquik Go Bad?
Yes, Nesquik does go bad, but the answer is a little complicated.
Nesquik doesn’t exactly ‘go bad’ in the sense that it spoils or becomes injurious to health. Nesquik Powder simply loses its potency with time, worsening in taste as it extends beyond its expiration date.
However, if an opened package or bottle of Nesquik is not stored properly, it can absorb moisture which promotes the growth of mold and harmful bacteria. If this powder is consumed, it will result in illness. The US Department of Agriculture suggests that cocoa powdered mixes can be consumed for one year after opening, when stored at room temperature and in dark places (1).
How Do You Determine The Expiry Date of Nesquik Powder?
Food shelf life is defined as the period between the manufacture and the purchase of a food product, during which time the product is in a state of satisfactory conditions in terms of appearance, taste, smell, texture, and nutritional value (2). Unlike other fortified supplements that go bad and become unfit for consumption, Nesquik has no shelf life. It features a ‘best before date, which simply points out the date after which the powder will begin to lose its original smell, taste, and flavor.
The best before date is generally printed on the back of the package or bottle or the bottom next to a production code. It is formatted as ‘Month-Year’.
If you cannot decipher the best before date, maybe because the package or bottle is damaged or the text has worn away, you should assume that the contents are contaminated and discard them.
How Long Does Unopened Nesquik Powder Last?
Unopened Nesquik can last for as long as two to 10 years after its best before date. It rarely goes bad unless it is contaminated or absorbs moisture for mold and bacteria to thrive.
Even a Nesquik container is quite sturdy, it is not indefinitely impenetrable. So it is safe to assume that the packaging can be breached, and proper storage requirements must be followed.
How Long Does Nesquik Powder Last?
Generally, Nesquik Powder remains drinkable for as long as two years after opening. But as emphasized in the previous sections, this period depends on how it was stored. And even if it was stored appropriately, Nesquik will lose its original taste and flavor with time, resulting in a far less appetizing beverage.
Nesquik Powder begins to lose its taste as soon as the package is opened; this becomes more pronounced around its best before date.
Chocolate powder is susceptible to damage due to the adsorption of moisture from the surrounding environment. It is very hygroscopic and if it is not well-packed, the fat crystals in the powder will easily melt during storage, leading to clumping and discoloration. The level of clumping is one of the parameters to define the quality of powdered food products. Consumers tend to reject a powder drink when it is clumped (2).
What Does Nesquik Contain?
Nesquik is fortified with iron and various vitamins that make it a deliciously nutritious supplement, and all that with no added color, artificial flavors, or sweeteners.
Nesquik Chocolate Powder is among the most widely consumed cocoa alternatives in the world and is suitable for all ages.
Does Nesquik Ready-to-Drink Milk Need Refrigeration?
Nesquik ready-to-drink milk is processed and packaged to be shelf-stable, hence it does not require refrigeration before opening. Cocoa milk products are sterilized under high temperatures (110 – 130°C) for a few minutes and then bottled into sterilized bottles and therefore can be kept at room temperatures for 5 months. However, a decrease in the viscosity can occur as well as browning and decrease in the sugar content, thus due to the Maillard reaction, sugar reacts with protein and produces melanoidins, which are brown pigments (3).
However, after it has been opened, it is exposed to various environmental factors, so it needs to be stored in the fridge.
How Should You Store Nesquik Powder?
As discussed, Nesquik Powder must always be stored in a cool, dry place, like your pantry or a cupboard.
However, there are some other conditions you must also keep in mind to prevent Nesquik from deteriorating ahead of time:
- Since Nesquik has a sturdy container that is enough to hold its contents till their printed shelf life, you don’t need to transfer the contents to another container. But if you need to, always use a clean and dry container.
- Cocoa powder is particularly prone to oxidation, so make sure you don’t leave its container open for a long time when you’re not using it.
- Always use a dry and clean utensil, such as a spoon, to scoop Nesquik powder from its container. This helps prevent cross-contamination by the addition of water to the dry powder, which could cause it to clump, develop mold, and expire prematurely.
- Humid environments significantly decrease Nesquik’s life expectancy, especially powder that’s been opened.
What Will Happen If You Drink Expired Nesquik?
Generally speaking, you don’t need to worry about consuming Nesquik that is past its expiry date, if you’re not picky about it tasting and smelling great.
As we’ve made clear, Nesquik does not spoil unless it has been contaminated. This is why consuming Nesquik past its best before date is not likely to result in any adverse health effects or illness, even if you’re consuming it a few years later.
However, as its shelf life ends, old, preserved Nesquik develops a weaker flavor and aroma, so you won’t be able to enjoy its original taste. And as more time passes, the taste will become significantly weaker, eventually reaching a point when it has no taste at all. In addition, changes occur in the fat present in the cocoa, due to rancidity phenomena starting with the hydrolysis of triglycerides giving rise to free fatty acids, which in turn undergo oxidation. A decrease in the antioxidants and vitamins can also occur after long storage times (18 months) (4).
In this brief article, we answered the question, “does Nesquik go bad?” and told you the tips and tricks to store Nesquik properly so you can enjoy it for years to come!
If you have any questions or comments please let us know.
- United States Department of Agriculture. Food Safety and Inspection Service.
- Nurhayati, Rifa, et al. Shelf Life Prediction of Chocomix Instant Chocolate Beverage Powder Using Accelerated Shelf Life Testing (ASLT) based on Critical Moisture Content Approach. Reaktor, 2018, 18, 63-70
- Mittal, Shikha, and Usha Bajwa. Effect of heat treatment on the storage stability of low calorie milk drinks. J food sci technol, 2014, 51, 1875-1883.
- Roda, Arianna, and Milena Lambri. Changes in antioxidants and sensory properties of italian chocolates and related ingredients under controlled conditions during an eighteen-month storage period. Nutrients, 2019, 11, 2719.