How Long Do M&Ms Last – (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 12 months

Everyone enjoys a nice chocolate treat from time and time. For some, this treat comes in the form of a cake or a cookie, and for others, that treat is a candy bar. Sometimes, that candy just happens to be M&Ms, and for good reason.

M&Ms were created by the Mars Candy Company in the 1940s. They came about after soldiers in England were observed eating Smarties, which were chocolates coated in a candy shell, used as military treats. The candy originally came in a cardboard tube, but by 1948 were packaged in the pouch we know today.

Since then, M&Ms have been a favorite candy treat for generations.

How Long Do M&Ms Last?

While the candy treat may be enjoyable, it’s reasonable to want to know just how long the candy will last. There are a few different factors that may definitely affect how long the candy stays good for, such as where they’re stored, as well as how they’re stored, for instance:

  1. Stored unopened, in the fridge- M&Ms stored in the refrigerator, unopened, will last around 12 months past date.
  2. Stored opened, in the fridge- M&Ms stored in the refrigerator, opened, will last around 6 months or so before the taste becomes less than tasty.
  3. Stored in the freezer- M&Ms stored in the freezer will last around 16 months past date.

How M&Ms are stored is the main factor when it comes to figuring out just how long they will last. M&ms which are unopened will clearly last longer than those which have already been opened.

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In summary, M&Ms are best when consumed:

Method of StorageTime
Unopened, in the fridge12 months past date
Opened, in the fridgeAbout 6 months
In the freezer16 months past date

While M&Ms will be safe to eat after the time frames mentioned above, they taste best when consumed within them. After a certain amount of time, the quality of the candy will suffer.

Why Do M&Ms Last That Long?

M&Ms last as long as they do for good reason. These candies are made of chocolate, which is pretty long-lasting. The extra candy coating adds some longevity to the candy. However, they’re still perishable after enough amount of time.

M&Ms will last a long time, especially due to their coating. However, after some amount of time, the quality of the candy will begin to suffer, making the candy taste less enjoyable than it used to when it was fresh.

Due to preservatives, M&Ms will last plenty long if stored properly. However, if the candy is stored at temperatures too high, it may still melt and may begin to spoil sooner than if stored at temperatures under 75 degrees F.

To increase the longevity of your M&M candies, always remember to store them in proper temperatures, preferably in the fridge or the freezer if possible. Try to abstain from opening the package until you plan on finishing the package, if this is impossible, then be sure to store your candy in a plastic bag for best results.