Does Kale Go Bad? How Long Does It Last?

If you are looking to add some nutrition to your meal, then you probably considered veggies. Kale is a leafy green that’s both tasty and nutritious. Many people also like adding some of it to their salads to give it an extra punch of health. But perhaps you got some extra leaves that you stored from your last dish. You ask yourself: Does it go bad?

Does kale Go Bad?

Your healthy green veggie does go bad, and kale is no exception.

Kale is a veggie and after it’s out from the farms, it starts to dry out and turn pale, this can make it an easy target for bacteria and mold wanting to take over it.

We can avoid this by storing our veggies efficiently, as well as taking notes of how long it lasts to ensure it doesn’t overstay in the fridge to the point of spoilage.

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How Long Does Kale Last?

Veggies never had a long shelf life to begin with. This is why it’s much better to consume kale as soon as you buy it from the fresh store.

How Long Does Kale Last

Your leafy veggie can last around a week when you store it properly, it can even go up to 2 weeks when bought fresh and stored optimally.

Some packaged kale have a best-by date on the package, and once it’s opened the clock tikes faster on it. Try not to open the package unless you are sure to consume it soon.

Powder kale is much more long lasting thanks to the dry formfactor. Most dry powder has some expiration date. However, according to AmazingGrass, your powder can still be used beyond the date if it was stored properly.

as for the shelf life, It can last from 6 to 8 months, depending on storage conditions.

Kale Shelf Life

Kale is a member of the cabbage family and has a distinctive curly or wrinkled shape. It is widely considered a superfood due to its high nutrient content, which includes vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, iron, calcium, and antioxidants.

Kale is available throughout the year and is popular in salads, smoothies, soups, and other dishes. However, like all fresh produce, kale has a limited shelf life and can go bad if not stored properly.

What is the shelf life of kale?

The shelf life of kale varies depending on several factors, including its freshness, storage conditions, and whether it has been cut or shredded. Fresh kale that has just been harvested can last up to two weeks when stored properly, while store-bought kale typically has a shorter shelf life of around five to seven days.

What affects the shelf life of kale?

Several factors can affect the shelf life of kale. These include:


Kale is a cool-season crop and prefers cooler temperatures. If kale is exposed to temperatures that are too warm, it can wilt and deteriorate quickly.


Kale is also sensitive to moisture. Excess moisture can cause kale to rot and spoil quickly.

Ethylene gas

Ethylene gas is a natural gas that some fruits and vegetables produce as they ripen. Exposure to ethylene gas can cause kale to ripen and deteriorate quickly.


Freshness is also a significant factor in the shelf life of kale. The fresher the kale, the longer it will last.

Impact of storage conditions on kale’s shelf life

The storage conditions can have a significant impact on the shelf life of kale. Here are some factors to consider:


Kale should be stored in the refrigerator to help extend its shelf life. It should be placed in a plastic bag or airtight container to help prevent moisture loss.


Kale prefers high humidity conditions. To keep kale fresh, it should be stored in a perforated plastic bag or placed in a container with a damp paper towel.

Ethylene exposure

Kale should be stored away from fruits and vegetables that produce ethylene gas. Exposure to ethylene can cause kale to ripen and deteriorate quickly.

Can kale go bad faster when cut or shredded?

Yes, kale can go bad faster when cut or shredded. When kale is cut or shredded, it releases moisture, which can cause it to spoil more quickly. To extend the shelf life of cut or shredded kale, it should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Tips for storing kale to extend its shelf life

Here are some additional tips for storing kale to help extend its shelf life:

  • Wash kale thoroughly before storing it, as any dirt or debris can lead to spoilage.
  • Dry the kale completely before storing it, as excess moisture can cause it to spoil more quickly.
  • If you have too much kale to use within a week, consider blanching and freezing it to preserve its freshness for several months.

By following these tips, you can extend the shelf life of kale and ensure that it stays fresh and nutritious for longer.

How To Store Kale?

Now that we know that kale can go bad in a considerably short time, it’s important to learn how to store it in proper way.

How To Store Kale

Powder kale is a bit different from other variants in terms of storage, here is how:

Packages of kale

These can be a bit straightforward, simply try to keep them in their packages in a cool and dark place. The fridge works best for both types of your leafy green.

Inspect the leaves before storing and remove saggy and deformed leaves, this is going to ensure that the water from the soggy leaves spread to other parts of the package and cause faster spoilage.

Fresh kale

It comes with stems, which can be used in other recipes. You only need to find some plastic bag, put the kale inside and don’t seal it completely. Try to keep some open space for airflow inside the package.

If you plan on storing your leafy green, it’s suggested to avoid moisture. This means only wash the veggie if you are planning to use it immediately, and dry it out before storing it in the fridge.

Kale powder

kale powder, also known as dehydrated kale, is a much more resilent than it’s other variants. You don’t really need a fridge for this one. All you need is a cool and dark place in the pantry and it’s good for as long as you want.

Moisture can really mess this one, so try to add a package of silica gel inside the package. This will make sure that even if some pesky moisture found it’s way in your container, the silica will deal with it.

Best Ways to Store Kale

To extend the shelf life of kale, it is important to store it properly. Here are some tips for storing kale:

Wrap it Up

When you bring kale home from the grocery store or farmer’s market, wrap it in a damp paper towel to keep it fresh.


Kale should always be stored in the fridge. The ideal temperature for kale is between 32-35°F (0-2°C).

Keep it Dry

Kale should be kept dry to prevent it from wilting. Avoid washing it until you are ready to use it.

Avoid Freezing

Kale does not freeze well, so it is best to avoid freezing it. Freezing can cause the leaves to become mushy and lose their flavor.

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Can You Freeze Kale?

If you bought a big amount of kale, and you plan on storing it for a pretty long time, perhaps it’s best to try freezing it instead of simply storing it in the fridge.

Can You Freeze Kale

Here is how you can freeze your leafy veggie in the right way:

  • Freezing bags work best for this, it’s suggested to make each bag a serving.
  • Add the kale inside the bags. Avoid adding too much in one bag.
  • Remove all the air from the bags, a vaccum would work best in such situation.
  • Once the bags are free from air, put them in the freezer for storage.

Freezing can extend the life of your veggie for up to 8 months in the freezer.

How Long Does Kale Last in the Fridge?

The shelf life of kale depends on several factors, including how fresh it was when purchased, how it is stored, and the temperature of the fridge. Typically, kale can last up to five days in the fridge when stored properly.

However, it is best to consume it within two to three days to ensure optimal freshness and nutritional value.

Can You Freeze Bagged Kale?

Yes, you can freeze bagged kale. Freezing kale is an easy and convenient way to preserve it for future use. Frozen kale can be used in smoothies, soups, stews, and many other recipes. Freezing kale is also a great way to prevent food waste if you have leftover kale that you can’t use immediately.

How to Freeze Bagged Kale?

Here are the steps to properly freeze bagged kale:

  • Wash the kale: Wash the kale leaves under cold running water to remove any dirt or debris.
  • Dry the kale: Dry the kale leaves thoroughly using a salad spinner or paper towels. Make sure the kale leaves are completely dry before freezing.
  • Remove the stems: Remove the tough stems from the kale leaves. The stems can be tough and fibrous, so it’s best to remove them before freezing.
  • Chop the kale: Chop the kale leaves into bite-sized pieces or leave them in large leaves. It’s up to you.
  • Blanch the kale: Blanch the kale leaves in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Blanching helps to preserve the color, flavor, and nutrients of the kale.
  • Cool the kale: Remove the kale from the boiling water and immediately plunge it into ice-cold water to stop the cooking process.
  • Drain the kale: Drain the kale thoroughly using a colander or paper towels.
  • Bag the kale: Place the kale in a freezer bag or an airtight container. Make sure to remove any excess air from the bag or container before sealing.
  • Label the bag: Label the bag with the date and contents before placing it in the freezer.

How long does cooked kale last in fridge?

Cooked kale typically lasts between 3-5 days in the fridge when stored properly. It’s important to note that this time frame can vary depending on a few factors, such as the freshness of the kale before it was cooked and how it was stored after cooking. If the kale was not fresh before cooking, it may not last as long in the fridge. Similarly, if it was not stored in an airtight container, it may spoil more quickly.

How To Tell If Kale Has Gone Bad?

there is nothing worse than being unsure of your food health. If you are wondering if your kale is still edible, here are some signs that will keep you away from spoiled veggies:

How To Tell If Kale Has Gone Bad


A good kale is green and looks fresh and tasty. Once it starts to go bad you will realize a change in color into a bit of pale yellow. in advanced stages of spoilage it will start to become more brownish. At this point you are better off throwing it away for your own health.


the smell of fresh kale is earthly and feels rejuvinating, a spoiled one is another story. It will start to smell more like sulfer, and become almost hard to bear.

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What happens if you eat expired kale?

Firstly, eating expired kale can lead to food poisoning. This is because kale, like all vegetables, can harbor harmful bacteria such as E.coli and salmonella. When kale begins to spoil, it can become a breeding ground for these bacteria, leading to potentially serious health issues.

Secondly, eating expired kale can lead to a loss of nutritional value. As kale ages, it loses its nutritional potency, particularly its vitamin C content. Vitamin C is essential for immune system health, and a lack of it can lead to a weakened immune system and a greater risk of infections.

So, what can you do to avoid these negative effects of eating expired kale? The first step is to always check the expiration date on the package before purchasing or consuming. If the expiration date has passed, it is best to discard the kale.

Additionally, when storing kale, make sure to keep it in a cool, dry place, such as the refrigerator. This will help slow down the spoiling process and prolong its shelf life.

Wrapping Up

Kale is an tasty veggie with a lot of potential for plenty of recipes. But knowing when it goes bad can help you make the most of your veggie. Make sure to store the veggie as we suggested and you will be surprised how long it lasts fresh for you.

If you have any questions concerning kale, feel free to write us a comment. We read every comment and we will make sure to reply as soon as possible.

Thanks for reading, and we wish you luck in your next cooking adventure.

Can kale go bad

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