Eggnog is a festive favorite across the world and loved by many especially during winter. It is a sensation among many families, thanks to the many ingredients (sugar, cream, milk, egg yolks, and whipped egg whites). But does it go bad? Here we will answer all the questions you might have.
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Does Eggnog Go Bad?
Do you stock too many bottles of eggnog in your pantry? Then, the question of whether eggnog goes bad or not might be a frequent bother to you. However, you should worry no more; we are here to offer all you need to know about the shelf life of eggnog and its storage tricks.
So, let us start with addressing the common concern; does eggnog really go bad? The answer to this is yes. Eggnog does expire real quickly since the ingredients that make it are perishable and quick expiring. However, how quick the expiration will happen is determined by various factors, the most common being your storage trends.
How Long Does Eggnog Last?
Have you ever wondered how long your eggnog can stay fresh in the pantry? Well, eggnog will stay fresh seven days past its printed best before date if it is well stored. However, its shelf life is influenced by a range of factors such as the company date and the processing methods used. Also, the exposure to light, heat, and the storage methods used are also key determinants of eggnog’s durability.
We can all agree that eggnog is a value-filled dairy product made of sugar, cream, milk, and eggs. From homemade varieties, eggnog might also contain alcohol components. Additionally, your eggnog will always be garnished with grated and ground nutmeg.
The most common varieties you will find in the market are those with reduced fats. The ones with the greatest taste are the ones made with a rich, bubbly homemade recipe. Though eggnog lacks Vitamin D and calcium, most people do not consume it for its nutritional value.
Rather, they love it for its intense and irresistible taste. The indulgence flavor is enjoyed most during the holidays. If you store your eggnog well, it will last as below;
|Up to 5 days|
4 Tips to Tell if Eggnog Has Gone Bad
Have you ever noticed a change in the appearance of your eggnog? Did you panic or rush to discard it? That is quite normal, and you probably did the right thing. When eggnog starts going bad, changes start occurring in the appearance. As often with dairy products, there are different ways of checking whether eggnog is still safe for consumption or not.
Interestingly, most of these methods depend on your senses. You will easily notice eggnog that has expired as it will display visible characteristics while still in the bottle. We will highlight some of the visible characteristics you should look out for to identify spoilt eggnog below.
- You will possibly note a texture change in your eggnog drink whenever it has been in the fridge for quite some time. Eggnog changes from its fine and soft appearance to a disgusting lumpy texture. The change in texture is always an indication that the drink has reached its expiry dates.
- Whenever you smell an unpleasant odor emanating from your fridge, it might be an indication that your eggnog has gone bad. The eggnog changes its fresh scent to a sour and unpleasant odor. We advise you always to discard the drink when you feel an unpleasant smell emanating from the bottle.
- Also, the eggnog will change its taste when it expires. The sweet and sensational flavor of the drink disappears, and it tastes sour and unpleasant. Sometimes its gets too bitter that you can’t even pass it through your throat. It is advisable to get rid of the drink when it changes its flavor.
- Additionally, when your eggnog has expired, you will note a significant change in its color. The color can change from its original white to beige, yellowish or blue. Many people tend to shy away from eggnog that has suffered color change, occasioned by lactic-acid-producing bacteria.
5 Tips to Store Eggnog
Are you looking for tips and tricks that you can use to store your eggnog to make it stay fresh for long? If so, then you are in the right place. In this section, we will offer you all the good storage trends you need to know. At the end of it, you will be able to prevent the quick expiry of your eggnog.
As we are all aware, storing the drink properly works magically in extending its shelf life. On the other hand, practicing poor storage techniques on the eggnog is likely to motivate its quick expiry. Of course, eggnog’s shelf life is relatively very short compared to other seasonal drinks because of the perishable ingredients used to manufacture it.
Like any other dairy product, eggnog comes with a best before date on its package from the manufacturer. The date indicated is the one that the manufacturers expect the eggnog should be on the shelf. Behind that date, any change in flavor or smell is your responsibility. The following tips are crucial in extending the shelf life of eggnog and maintaining its quality;
- You should never store your eggnog in your kitchen pantry, especially if it is already opened. Eggnog is quite perishable, and keeping it in a warm environment is likely to hasten the spoilage process. Instead, you should keep the eggnog bottle in the fridge immediately you are done with it. Keeping it refrigerated all along will, without doubt, increase its shelf life awesomely.
- You should be keen on keeping eggnog away from heat and light sources such as direct exposure to the sun. When you decide to keep the bottle unopened and place it in the pantry, you should ensure that the shelf is enclosed and dark inside. Additionally, the pantry should be very far from direct heat sources that can speed the drink’s fermentation.
- Whenever you keep your eggnog on the fridge, you should be keen to place it in a corner that does not experience frequent temperature fluctuations. For instance, never keep it close to the fridge door because the temperature there is not stable. The instability and fluctuation are caused by frequent opening and closing of the door. Instead, you should focus on keeping the deep compartments of the fridge where the temperature is stable.
- Also, you should not change the container when storing leftovers of eggnog in the fridge. Rather, you should keep the drink in its original container and keep it tightly sealed and protected. The step is meant to prevent cross-contamination of the drink during the transfer.
- Lastly, you should never think of freezing eggnog unless it is very necessary. The drink is at its best when stored in the refrigerator, where the temperature is optimally regulated. Consequently, freezing the eggnog causes destabilization of its structure, and once thawed, the drink’s consistency is altered. It starts forming small clumps that never stir in. However, you can freeze the drink when it has gone three months beyond its best before dates.
The Risk of Consuming Expired Eggnog
Have you been wondering what could happen if you drunk expired eggnog? Or worse, have you ever consumed eggnog that has expired consciously or unconsciously? Consuming expired eggnog exposes you to numerous health risks. Almost all the ingredients used to manufacture eggnog are highly perishable, explaining its relatively short shelf life.
In your good senses, you would not want to drink eggnog that has been sitting in the fridge for a long time. In the first place, you will have it in mind that the eggnog is manufactured from raw eggs and milk, and that expires quickly. Further, expired eggnog will have visible characteristics that turn you off whenever you think of consuming it.
Despite the drink being pasteurized, bacteria can still survive in it. Consuming eggnog that bacteria have invested in is likely to cause food poisoning. The milk and egg components in the drink are likely to host bacteria tones, and thus there is a high chance of suffering health complications when you drink expired eggnog.
Can You Freeze Eggnog?
The simple answer to this question is yes. You can freeze eggnog. However, freezing eggnog is quite unnecessary. Since the drink is the quick expiring type, it is best when stored in the fridge rather than the freezer. Commercially produced eggnog is pasteurized to make it last longer, unlike homemade eggnog that lasts for only one day.
When frozen, the structure of the drink is altered, and clumps start forming. All in all, the decision on whether to freeze your eggnog lies is your sole responsibility. Frozen eggnog should last for about six months. When freezing, follow the simple steps below to get the best result;
- Since you can’t freeze the eggnog in its original glass bottle, you should transfer the drink to another resealable container. However, to avoid cross-contamination, always ensure that the container is thoroughly cleaned and sterilized.
- When filing the container, always be keen to leave some space on the top. Space is meant to allow for expansion of the drink when it reaches its freezing point.
- Place the container in the freezer and maintain temperature.
Eggnog is a winter that is a darling to many during festive seasons. The drink is quite perishable and spoils easily when not stored properly. We have offered above several tips and tricks that will help you keep your drink fresh and irresistible for the longest time possible.