Is expired Bisquick okay?

Bisquick is a popular baking mix made by Betty Crocker that can be used to make a variety of baked goods like pancakes, waffles, biscuits, and dumplings. It combines flour, shortening, leavening, salt, and powdered milk all in one convenient box. While incredibly handy, because it contains perishable ingredients like dairy and leavening agents, Bisquick does have an expiration date printed on the box. This leads many bakers to wonder, is it okay to use Bisquick after the printed expiration date has passed? Let’s take a closer look.

What happens when Bisquick expires?

The expiration date printed on a box of Bisquick, which is often between 6 months and a year from the time it was produced, does not necessarily indicate the date that the baking mix is no longer safe to eat. Rather, it indicates the date up until which Betty Crocker guarantees the product will be at its absolute peak freshness, flavor, and leavening power.

So a mix that is a few months past its date may still bake up acceptably, though likely not quite as well as a newer box would. The chemical leavening agents like baking powder or baking soda can lose potency over time. And the mix can start to pick up some off-flavors from staling.

However, eventually the chemical leaveners will stop working altogether to lift and aerate your baked goods. And extremely old boxes that are many years past their prime may pick up rancidity from the fats going bad. Once Bisquick gets to this degree of staleness, it’s best not to use it for baking.

How to tell if expired Bisquick is still good

To determine whether your box of Bisquick is still good to use after the printed expiration date, you’ll need to rely on your senses. Give the powder a look, smell, and taste:


A fresh box of Bisquick will appear as a very fine, bright white powder. If the powder has begun to yellow or darken, that indicates staling or oxidation has started breaking down the flour and other ingredients. Clumping of the powder inside the box or visible lumps also signals moisture buildup and staling. Don’t use Bisquick that is past its prime in this way.


When first opened, Bisquick gives off aromas of grain, with slight hints of sweetness, milk, and vanilla. Take a big sniff of your expired Bisquick once the box is opened. It should still smell pleasant and similar to a newly-opened box. Any rancid or off-putting odors like sour milk mean it’s gone bad. Toss out any foul-smelling boxes.


Use a clean spoon to taste a tiny bit of the Bisquick right from the box. The flavor should taste like the aroma: nutty, sweet, vanilla notes. Any bitter, sour, or strange flavors immediately apparent mean that box has gone bad and should not be used. Don’t taste Bisquick that smells rancid already, for food safety.

How long past its date can Bisquick be safely used?

So now that you know how to inspect Bisquick for freshness, just how long after the printed expiration date can you still expect it to bake properly? Here are some general guidelines on shelf life:

0-3 months past date

Bisquick that is less than 3 months past the date will perform very similarly to fresh. Use it as you normally would in recipes. There may be a very slight decrease in lift or less tender texture, but the difference likely won’t be noticeable.

3-6 months past date

At 3-6 months past its date, Bisquick can still be used but you may need to tweak your recipes slightly. Use an extra egg or two to lighten the texture. Let doughs and batters rest and rise a little longer before baking. Add a bit more leavening like baking powder or soda. Also sift the mix before using to prevent clumping.

6-12 months past date

The longer Bisquick sits around past its date, the less potent the leavening will be. Around 6 months, you’ll notice baked goods don’t rise as high. At 12 months, pancakes and waffles might come out quite dense. The mix may need some additional help. Consider adding extra leavening agents, allowing extra resting time, or using cake or bread flour to aid with lift and texture.

Over 1 year past date

If your box of Bisquick has reached this point, it’s best not to bake with it. The risk of dense, hockey puck biscuits or flat baked goods are too high. The chemical leaveners have simply lost efficacy. Toss extra-old boxes of mix rather than wasting time and ingredients on unsuccessful bakes.

Does expired Bisquick pose any risks?

Using truly expired, spoiled, or rancid Bisquick could potentially cause some foodborne illness if dangerous bacteria or mold has cultivated. However, this is quite rare, as the dry environment of baking mix is not conducive to harmful microbial growth. Far more likely is the baked good just doesn’t turn out quite right.

Here are some signs that Bisquick has become unsafe:

– Strange colors or powder clumping
– Visible mold
– Foul, rancid, or odd smell
– Extreme bitterness when tasted

If you inspect the box and notice any of these warning signs that dangerous microbes could be present, do not taste or use the mix. Play it safe and throw it out.

Slightly stale or weaker-rising Bisquick, however, is not harmful at all if adequately inspected through look, smell, and taste before baking. Nothing dangerous can grow without moisture. Under normal storage conditions, the worst that can happen is flat baked goods.

Storing Bisquick properly for longevity

To help your boxes of Bisquick stay fresh as long as possible:

– Store in a cool, dry pantry or cupboard away from heat, moisture, and sunlight
– Keep box tightly sealed after opening
– Don’t scoop right from box with dirty utensils
– Transfer to airtight container after opening if not using quickly
– Write date opened on box with marker
– Buy only as much as you’ll use within 6-12 months

With proper storage, you can generally trust your senses to know if Bisquick is still okay to bake with even after the printed date has passed. Keep in mind moisture is the enemy for shelf life. Follow the look, smell, taste testing guidelines to avoid unpleasant surprises from using mix that’s simply too old.


The printed expiration date on Bisquick is more of a guide than a hard rule. Inspecting aging boxes for changes in appearance, aroma, and taste will let you know if Bisquick can still be safely used or if it’s time to toss it out.

While Bisquick over 1 year past its date should be discarded, you can often get away with using boxes even 6 months to a year past the printed date with a few tweaks to your recipes. Proper dry storage is key to maximize freshness too.

Trust your senses, be wary of any signs of mold and moisture, and don’t hesitate to toss boxes that seem too stale. With Bisquick inspected properly beforehand, you shouldn’t have to worry about food safety risks from using mix even moderately past its date. Just be ready to adjust recipes as necessary if the leavening power has diminished.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can expired Bisquick make you sick?

Extremely expired or spoiled Bisquick that has visible mold, clumping, foul odors, or bizarre tastes should be discarded as it could potentially cause illness if used. However, properly stored boxes that are reasonably close to the printed date and still look, smell, and taste normal are not hazardous. At worst, baked goods don’t rise fully.

How can you tell if Bisquick is bad?

Signs that Bisquick has gone bad and may be unsafe include strange colors, clumping powder, foul rancid smells, bitter taste, visible mold, or moisture buildup. If you spot these warning flags, toss the box. Fresh Bisquick appears as a fine white powder with a pleasant aroma.

Can Bisquick lose its leavening power?

Yes, the chemical leavening agents in Bisquick like baking powder and baking soda can lose strength over time after the box is opened and exposed to moisture and air. Older Bisquick may need extra leavening added to recipes to compensate. Let batters rest before baking too.

Does Bisquick really expire?

The shelf life of Bisquick is about 6 to 12 months. While technically edible past the expiration date if properly stored, Bisquick will eventually stale and lose leavening power if kept too long. For best flavor and lift, use boxes within 12 months. Discard severely old boxes.

Can you use Bisquick after expiration date?

Bisquick can be safely used for some time after its printed expiration date as long as it appears and smells normal. Expect some loss of rising power so you may need to modify recipes. Throw out boxes more than 12 months past their date or that smell rancid or show moisture damage.

Table Comparing Fresh and Expired Bisquick

Characteristic Fresh Bisquick Expired Bisquick
Appearance Bright white fine powder Dull, yellowed, clumping powder
Aroma Pleasant, sweet, vanilla Rancid, sour, or odd smell
Flavor Sweet and nutty Bitter, sour
Texture Light and fluffy baked goods Dense, heavy baked goods
Rising Power High lift Low lift
Food Safety Risk Very low Higher if rancid/moldy

Recipes Using Bisquick

Bisquick Shortcakes

Makes 8 shortcakes

– 2 cups Bisquick mix
– 1/3 cup milk
– 2 Tbsp sugar
– 1 Tbsp baking powder
– 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
– 1/4 tsp salt
– Whipped cream, for serving
– Strawberries, for serving

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a bowl, combine Bisquick, milk, sugar, baking powder, vanilla and salt. Stir just until a soft dough forms.
3. Drop dough by the 1/4 cupful onto prepared baking sheet.
4. Bake for 12-14 minutes until golden brown. Allow to cool 5 minutes before splitting shortcakes.
5. Top shortcake bottoms with whipped cream and strawberries. Add shortcake tops and serve.

Bisquick Coffee Cake

Serves 9

– 2 cups Bisquick mix
– 2/3 cup milk
– 1/4 cup sugar
– 1 egg
– 1 tsp vanilla extract
– 1/4 tsp cinnamon
– 1/4 cup pecans, chopped
– 2 Tbsp brown sugar
– 1 Tbsp butter, softened

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan.
2. In a bowl, stir Bisquick, milk, sugar, egg and vanilla until blended. Spread batter into prepared pan.
3. In a small bowl, mix cinnamon, pecans, brown sugar and butter. Sprinkle over batter.
4. Bake 22-27 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
5. Allow coffee cake to cool at least 10 minutes before serving.

Bisquick Cheese Biscuits

Makes 12 biscuits

– 2 cups Bisquick mix
– 2/3 cup milk
– 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
– 1/4 tsp garlic powder
– 2 Tbsp butter, melted

1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a bowl, stir together Bisquick, milk, cheese and garlic powder until a soft dough forms.
3. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly. Roll dough to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut out rounds using a biscuit cutter.
4. Place biscuits on prepared baking sheet. Brush tops with melted butter.
5. Bake for 8-10 minutes until golden brown. Allow to cool 5 minutes before serving.

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