How Long Can You Keep Maple Syrup In The Fridge Before It Spoils?

Tom Gaffey
by Tom Gaffey

There simply is no substitute for 100% pure maple syrup. Many companies and brilliant minds have tried to replicate the nuanced sweetness that originates from maple tree sap, but you just can’t recreate nature. This is why pure maple syrup is commonly found in so many refrigerators. But if you only eat pancakes once in a great while, like around the holidays, you might wonder if your old opened bottle of sweet sappy syrup is still edible. After all, how long can maple syrup last in a fridge before it spoils?

Pure maple syrup can last upwards of one year in a refrigerator once it is opened. It can live on a pantry shelf unopened for upwards of one year as well but must be refrigerated once opened. Imitation maple syrup sometimes lasts longer, and might not need refrigeration due to additives. If you notice mold, a change in color, consistency, or taste, then your maple syrup might be spoiled.

The good news is that while maple syrup spoils just like any other naturally derived food product, it doesn’t happen overnight. In fact, maple syrup lasts longer than many other sweet condiments. There are even measures you can take once the syrup bottle is opened to help make it last even longer than one year. Keep reading to understand when the maple syrup in your fridge will spoil, and how you can keep it fresher, longer.

How Long Can You Keep Opened Maple Syrup In The Fridge?

If you have a big new jug of maple syrup you picked up on a New England road trip, you are probably wondering how long you have to consume it all before it goes bad. First things first; before you even crack the seal, you should know you can usually store unopened maple syrup on a pantry shelf for a full year. This might be a helpful fact for those with space in a deep pantry who are looking to decrease the number of condiments in their fridge.

Once opened, you need to store maple syrup in the fridge. Opened maple syrup can last upwards of one year when stored in a refrigerator.

Remember that this can vary based on several factors. If the syrup is not pure, for example, it might have some ingredients that spoil quicker. Conversely, if there were preservatives added to the syrup for some reason, such as to prolong its lifespan, then the syrup may last longer.

Be sure to check the label for possible expiration dates and also the ingredients for clues on whether or not your syrup might last longer.

  • Pro Tip: Freezing maple syrup is a great way to extend its life. Not only does it keep your syrup fresher longer, but it even stays in liquid (or oozy solid) form in the freezer, making it easy to use even when frozen.

Shelf Life Of Pure Maple Syrup Versus Imitation Maple Syrup

You might wonder how pure maple syrup lasts compared to the imitation varieties. It should come as no surprise that many pancake syrups contain little to no maple syrup, or natural ingredients for that matter. These sweet liquids might have the sugar content and the color down, but they also have some chemicals designed to keep the syrup fresh for longer.

In fact, many pancake syrups can be left outside the refrigerator for upwards of one year. Make sure you check the particular brand of pancake syrup, but many popular brands are fully capable of being left outside of the fridge for many months once opened.

Keep in mind that while these imitation syrups might last longer overall, they do not have the same great taste nor the natural ingredients that maple syrup has.

Warning Signs That Your Maple Syrup May Be Spoiled

If you have no idea how long it has been since the maple syrup in your fridge was opened, and you see no expiration date, you might wonder if your maple syrup is spoiled. Before you throw caution to the wind, consider looking for these possible warning signs that your syrup is spoiled. After all, you should always discard spoiled food to prevent illness.

  • Visible Presence Of Mold: The biggest sign your syrup is spoiled is the presence of mold. There are some “harmless” molds that might grow on the top of your syrup, but if you notice mold on your syrup, it is best to throw it away.
  • A Change In Consistency: A change in consistency, or separation may occur if the syrup is very old, or if another substance has gotten into the container. If the syrup is very watery, or abnormally thick, take this as a red flag.
  • The Flavor Is “Off”: Our taste buds are often the final test when it comes to freshness. If the syrup tastes off in any way, especially if you notice a spicey or sour flavor, then it is best to toss it.
  • Change In Color: A change in color might also be a sign your maple syrup is spoiled. This change in color might actually be due to the presence of mold.

Four Tips To Help Keep Your Maple Syrup Fresher Longer

1. Keep The Lid On The Syrup

Make sure you keep your syrup sealed properly. This helps avoid air, bacteria, and particles from getting into the syrup. After all, syrup on its own is less likely to spoil than syrup that has been contaminated.

2. Don’t Pour Syrup Back In The Original Container

Maple syrup isn’t cheap. It might be tempting to pour whatever syrup you didn’t use in the breakfast buffet carafe back into the original container. Avoid this, as this can promote bacteria growth. Instead, put the extra syrup in a small Tupperware, and use it sooner rather than later.

3. Do Your Best To Prevent Food Particles From Entering The Bottle

Try and only open the syrup container when you need to. The longer your maple syrup bottle remains sealed, the more likely it will stay pure and fresh.

4. Store Backup Syrup In The Freezer

Believe it or not, frozen maple syrup can last indefinitely. If you have a lot of maple syrup, consider storing the bulk of it (or at least half) in the freezer. This way you can have a small portion in the fridge, but you never have to worry about your main supply spoiling – as long as your freezer stays frozen.

Sealing Up How Long You Can Store Maple Syrup In A Fridge

Maple syrup is a crucial condiment for anyone who loves pancakes or waffles. People also use maple syrup for baking, in coffee and even cocktails. While maple syrup must be refrigerated once opened, it can last upwards of one year in the refrigerator once opened. Remember to keep the container sealed tight. To preserve your syrup even longer, put it in the freezer, where it can last indefinitely.

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Tom Gaffey
Tom Gaffey

Tom Gaffey is an expert writer who currently resides in Washington D.C. Tom has a passion for real estate and home improvement writing, as well as travel and lifestyle writing. He lived the last twelve years in Hawaii where he worked closely with luxury resorts and event planners, mastering his knowledge of aesthetics and luxury products. This is where he found his passion for home improvement and a keen interest in DIY projects. Currently, Tom resides in Washington D.C, and also working on his debut fiction novel.

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