A glass or two of margaritas on hot summer days is incredibly relaxing, isn’t it? And, when it comes to Cinco de Mayo, margaritas are the life of the party. However, sometimes, a bottle or even a bucket of margarita mix might be left over from the party.
So, what do you do if you have left over margarita mix from the party? Does margarita mix go bad? How can you store margarita mix safely? Well, let’s dive deep and find out!
Does Margarita Mix Go Bad?
Margarita mix is basically water with a lot of sugar and preservatives added. So, is it something that goes bad right away? It’s definitely not. However, though margarita mixes have quite a good shelf life, they will go bad eventually.
It’s unlikely that they will spoil, but the mix’s flavor and quality are sure to degrade as months go by, more rapidly if it’s opened or homemade.
However, there’s nothing to worry about as you’ll have plenty of months to make some refreshing glasses of margaritas using the mix before they start degrading. However, a major disclaimer, you have to store them properly!
How Long Does Margarita Mix Last?
|In the pantry|
In the refrigerator/freezer
Margarita mix (Unopened)
|‘Best By’ + 1 year|
|Margarita mix (Opened)|
Margarita mix (Homemade)
As we’ve discussed, margarita mixes are quite shelf-stable. So, the chances that your margarita mix will last much longer than the ‘Best before’ or the ‘Best By label’ in the bottle is quite high. However, though margarita mixes don’t necessarily spoil, it does lose its flavor and quality.
An unopened bottle of non-alcoholic margarita mix will last you for about 1 year when stored in the pantry.
An opened bottle, however, has a much lesser shelf life comparatively. It will last for about 6-9 months, only if you store it in the refrigerator or the freezer. If stored in the pantry, the shelf life will be decreased to a few weeks or even days.
The same is the case for homemade margarita mix. What’s more, you’ll probably not be adding industrial preservatives to your homemade margarita mixes. So, be extra careful with your homemade mixes and refrigerate or freeze them at all times as they only last for a few weeks.
If the margarita mix you’ve in your pantry or the fridge has tequila in it, the shelf life might even be longer. Also, as alcohol is quite prone to spoilage and is highly shelf-stable, margarita mixes containing tequila are more stable in the pantry than those that lack tequila.
3 Tips to Tell if Margarita Mix has gone bad
But how do you tell that if your margarita mix has gone bad? Well, here we’ve mentioned some of the tips that will come in handy if you ever see a bottle of months-old margarita mix in your pantry or the fridge.
1. Give it a quick sniff
No wonder margarita mixes smell so wonderful – a perfect combination of sweet and sour. The sugar and lime in the mixes really do their job good. But if your margarita mix smells too sour or too off, you might probably have to throw it away.
2. Does it still taste good?
Margarita mix tastes refreshing and citrusy sour – with or without tequila. So, before serving your guests with margaritas, or before making glass for yourself, taste the margarita mix and decide on whether or not it tastes good. If it doesn’t, you know what to do!
On the other hand, you margarita might taste flat, and you’ll probably realise that it didn’t quite hit the spot. If your margarita’s quality is your top-most priority, you might need to make a short trip to the store in such cases.
Else, you can try to revive the taste by adding some fresh lime or lemon juice. As it’s just a quality issue, you can experiment with the mix. If not, back to plan A – trash them! Why would anyone destroy margaritas with awful tasting margarita mix anyways, isn’t it?
3. Are there any foreign particles in the mix?
We’ve said it before, the chances of your margarita mix spoiling are very slim. But we can’t rule out on that entirely. If you see something inside the bottle, it might not be a good idea to use the mix in your margarita.
4 Tips to store Margarita Mix
Now, as we’ve talked about whether or not margarita mixes go bad, their shelf life, and how to tell if they’ve gone bad, let’s talk about how to store them properly.
1. Store your margarita mix in an air-tight container
It goes without saying; syrups, liquors, and even mixes including margarita mix must always be kept in an air-tight container. Moisture not only increases the chance of contamination (which is extremely low in case of margarita mixes) but also degrades the quality of such mixes rapidly.
2. Heat and sunlight are a big No-No!
Both heat and sunlight are believed to degrade the quality and flavor of margarita mixes. Moreover, not only storing but also mixing your margaritas in sunlight is not safe either.
If the lime juice drops in your skin in the presence of UVA rays, a skin condition called phytophotodermatitis, also called ‘Margarita burn’ might occur, which might even result in second-degree burns.
Even though margaritas are the favourite summer drinks, it looks like they don’t have a good relationship with the sun. So, always keep your margarita mixes in the dark and cold place in the pantry. And remember – the temperature must be as constant as possible.
3. Refrigerate once opened
An opened bottle of margarita mix, unless it has tequila in it, must always be refrigerated. Even if the mix contains tequila, it’ll only increase the shelf life by a few weeks and no more. So, the best option for you will be to refrigerate it.
Moreover, homemade margarita mixes also lack enough preservatives and are not as shelf-stable as the store-bought ones. So, if you’ve freshly made a pitcher of margarita mix, we’d recommend you pour it in an air-tight container and store in the refrigerator right away!
4. Freeze the margarita mix
You can definitely freeze the margarita mix. What’s more, the freezing margarita mix also provides constant temperature, which is great for its quality and flavor.
The Risk of Consuming an Expired Margarita Mix
By now we know that margarita mixes are safe to consume way past their expiry date. So, if you’re a few weeks or months past the ‘Best before’ date, it isn’t that big a deal.
However, as we cannot rule out completely on the spoilage factor, margarita mixes that are way off their expiry date must probably be thrown away. Moreover, expired margarita mixes that are emitting off-odor don’t probably taste either.
So, the extreme that might happen is that your tastebuds might hate you for punishing them with a flat or worst quality margarita mix and your guests might not be on your side either.
Can You Freeze Margarita Mix?
Well, you might’ve heard about frozen margarita recipes, or you might’ve tried on your own and loved it. But, did you know that you can even freeze margarita mix?
Freezing margarita mix provides it with dar, cool environment and constant temperature, thus helping to retain its quality and taste for longer.
When freezing your margarita mix, we’d recommend you to freeze in different containers, one for each batch of margarita. This way, you won’t have to keep defrosting and refreezing the mix, which is obviously not a good idea if you want your mix to last long.
Next hack is to freeze your margarita mix in cubes and then store it in a container. This way, you don’t have to worry about measurements and defrost as many cubes as you want. How amazing is that?
But if you don’t want to deal with frozen margarita mix, add the tequila beforehand. This way, the mix freezes as a slushie as alcohol doesn’t freeze in the freezer and thus, it will be much easier for you to work with.
One quick fun recipe for you – mix all the margarita ingredients including tequila, freeze it for about 24 hours, and blend it with some frozen fruits to enjoy a glass of fresh margarita slushie. You can even serve refreshing glasses of delicious margarita slushie to your guests.
Margarita mixes last you quite a long time, meaning they’re good for your wallet as well as your mood, well, after making margaritas they will. But the most important tip is to store them properly – air-tight and away from heat and sunlight.
So, the bottle that you’ve just discovered in your pantry or the fridge might still be good to consume, which you’ll figure it out as we’ve provided you with all the necessary tips.
We’ve shared with you so much on margarita mixes, and now, we’d like to know about you. What’s your most favorite margarita recipe?