Does Cinnamon Go Bad? – Full Analysis

Does Cinnamon Go Bad? – Full Analysis

Cinnamon is one of the most popular spices on the planet. It is now available in every country, and many foods are made with the spice. It is just as popular as salt and pepper. 

Many coffee shops, bakeries, and breakfast stations also provide cinnamon in a shaker so their customers can add it to their food and drinks.

Does cinnamon go bad? Yes, cinnamon does go bad. But it will take a long time for it to expire. On average, powdered cinnamon takes two to three years to expire, and cinnamon sticks will take four to five years. If you grow and make ground cinnamon in your own home, it will also last two to three years. 

Since spices don’t have any moisture in them, they have a very long shelf life.

How Long Does Cinnamon Last?

Cinnamon sticks: Since a cinnamon stick is a complete whole spice that is not grounded, it has the longest shelf life of all forms of cinnamon. A cinnamon stick will last four to five years as long as it is protected from the air.

Cinnamon and most other spices that are ground up and purchased from a market or grocery store will last about 2 to 3 years from the grocery store. But cinnamon that comes in a bag will not last this long if it stays in its bag. It will expire faster because the opening at the top allows air inside.

Homemade: Spices, including cinnamon, which are ground up in your own home, also have the same shelf light. Homemade ground cinnamon will also last two to three years if it is in an airtight container.

How Long Does Cinnamon Last? Shelf Life [Chart]

Item Length of time
Cinnamon powder 2-3 years
Cinnamon sticks  4-5 years
Cinnamon powder, homemade 2-3 years

How to Know if Cinnamon has Gone Bad?

Since cinnamon has a strong smell that many people love, the best way to know if this spice has gone bad is if you can no longer smell the scent of cinnamon when you open its container. Cinnamon is not a spice that needs heat to bring out its flavor and smell. So, if you cannot smell the scent of cinnamon from the stick or powder, it has gone bad, and you must purchase more.

Another obvious way to know if cinnamon has gone bad is through its color. Cinnamon has a light to dark brown color. If you see its color is turning pale or some of the spice in the container is turning completely white, then it is too old.

When cinnamon is starting to age, it will require a bit of heat to release its flavor. So, if you have some cinnamon that you can’t smell, but you can taste it after it is cooked, then consider purchasing a new container of cinnamon soon.

How to Store Cinnamon

It is amazing how spice sellers can profit from their spices since they last so long when they are grounded and placed in good packaging. There are two types of spices all over the world, one that is sold from a spice seller or merchant and the other is the grocery store spice that are freshly ground in your own home.

Depending on the type of packaging that cinnamon comes in, you may have to move the cinnamon to an airtight container. If you purchase cinnamon that comes in a glass or plastic container, you can store it in the cupboard or pantry. But if the cinnamon is in a small plastic bag, it is better to store it in a Ziplock bag to protect against the air.

Once you open a container of cinnamon, always make sure it is properly closed when you are done using it. If you open a plastic bag of cinnamon, put it back in its Ziploc bag and zip it sealed. Cinnamon that comes in a plastic bag will turn stale much faster since it is not protected.

The same goes for cinnamon sticks. If cinnamon sticks are in a plastic or glass container, they will be fine. But if they are in a plastic bag, you can place the sticks in their solid container or a plastic bag.

Types of Cinnamon

Although there are many types of cinnamon, there are four species of cinnamon that are the most prevalent in the world.

Note: Cassia cinnamon is not a specific type of cinnamon. It is more like a family name. The family name Cassia is given to most spices that are grown in the area of Southeast Asia.

Ceylon: This type of cinnamon has many names like true cinnamon and Mexican cinnamon. Most of the cinnamon is grown in Sri Lanka. This name is also the name of a popular tea. Cassia is not a specific type of cinnamon. It is simply a Family of cinnamon that is grown in many parts of Southeast Asia.

Saigon: Using this type of cinnamon will add an extra kick of spiciness to anything that attitude. This cinnamon is not a dessert spice. But it can improve the flavor of any savory or spicy dish that calls for cinnamon.

Korintje: This type of cinnamon is also very popular in the United States, and it is also grown in Indonesia. You will recognize these sticks as the long cinnamon sticks available from the grocery store. This type of cinnamon is related to Vietnamese or Saigon Cinnamon.


  • Cinnamon is an extremely popular spice, and it is used around the world.
  • Cassia is a family name given to some species of cinnamon that is grown in Southeast Asia.
  • There are three main species of cinnamon: Ceylon, Saigon, and Vietnamese.
  • Ceylon cinnamon is also known as True cinnamon or Mexican cinnamon.
  • Cinnamon sticks can last from four to five years.
  • Cinnamon that is ground up and stored in a container can last two or three years.
  • Homemade cinnamon will also last four to five years if cared for properly.
  • Cinnamon that is old and past its expiration date has no flavor or scent.
  • Also, the spice will turn tail or turn white when it gets old.
  • Cinnamon that is starting to expire will require heat to release its scent and flavor.