What happens if you eat expired mochi?

In this brief guide, we will answer the question, “What happens if you eat expired mochi?”, and tell you how long does mochi last. We will also discuss ways to properly store mochi.

What happens if you eat expired mochi?

You can get food poisoning from expired mochi if it was not stored properly after opening. Mochi generally has a short shelf life once it has been opened. Mold can grow on mochi which can prove harmful for health. 

Other than mold, contamination with bacteria can also lead to food poisoning.

On the other hand, properly stored unopened packaged mochi will be safe for consumption after its expiry date but you should look at its texture, smell and taste to see if it has spoiled or not. If everything seems fine, and the mochi is still soft and chewy, then it is most probably safe for consumption. 

How long does mochi last?

Packaged mochi lasts for a few months at room temperature in the pantry. They can last for upto 12 months in the freezer.

After they have been opened, they will only last for about 7 days when placed in the fridge. They will last for 2 weeks in the freezer.

On the other hand, homemade fresh mochi should be consumed as soon as it is made because keeping it at room temperature will make it go bad within 1-2 days. Keeping it in the fridge will make it hard and dry and not enjoyable to eat anymore. It should be kept in the freezer for storage.

This is because packaged mochi has preservatives added to them and on top of that, they come in a vacuum sealed packaging. They are also often individually wrapped which further keeps them away from moisture and air.

How to properly store mochi?

At room temperature, when mochi comes in contact with air, it rapidly spoils mostly due to mold, especially if it is homemade. It is not advisable to keep store bought mochi at room temperature as well once it has been opened.

In the fridge, opened mochi gets dry and hard due to loss of moisture and the starch present in it gets retrograded. 

The best way to store mochi is to freeze it. Refer to the following tips for storage in the freezer.

  • Keep them in their original packaging unopened in the freezer.

  • Once opened, take out the mochi from their original packaging.
  • Cut them into single serving sizes if they are already in individual pieces.
  • Coat them in cornstarch or potato starch. This prevents them from drying out and sticking to each other.
  • Wrap them individually in plastic wrap.
  • Place all these individually wrapped servings in an airtight container or a heavy duty freezer bag then place them in the freezer.
  • If you do not want to coat them in cornstarch or potato starch, place the single servings of mochi onto a sheet pan with some distance between them.
  • Freeze them until they harden so that they do not stick together later.
  • Then place these already frozen mochi in a zip lock bag which is freezer safe or an airtight container and place in the freezer again.
  • While using a zip lock bag, push and remove all the air from the bag before placing it in the freezer.

However, if you do not have any space in the freezer due to any other reason you can not freeze them, then make ‘mizu-mochi’. We will explain how it is done.

  • Take a bowl and fill it with clean drinking water.
  • Place the mochi in it and make sure it is completely submerged in the water.
  • Cover the bowl with a lid making sure there is no air entering the bowl.
  • Place it in the refrigerator.
  • Drain the water and change it everyday. Make sure you also wash the mochi while changing the water.
  • Any part of mochi that is not covered with water will have mold growing on it.

Learn more about storing mochi the correct way here.

Other FAQs about Rice Cake that you may be interested in.

Can you eat mochi when pregnant?


In this brief guide, we answered the question, “What happens if you eat expired mochi?”, and tell you how long does mochi last. We also discussed ways to properly store mochi.



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