Cranberry sauce is great as a side dish for Thanksgiving and Christmas but can also be enjoyed on sandwiches or in other recipes throughout the year. The only downside is that cranberry sauce doesn’t have a very long shelf life once opened.
Canned and homemade cranberry sauce can last up to 2 weeks in the fridge when stored in an airtight container and up to 2 hours at room temperature. You should never store cranberry sauce in the can and always check for signs of spoilage before consuming.
Here is what you need to know about how long cranberry sauce is good for in and out of the fridge and how to store it properly.
How Long Does Homemade Cranberry Sauce Last?
If your homemade cranberry sauce is made with fresh ingredients, it can last up to two hours sitting on the table at room temperature before it needs to be refrigerated.
If your kitchen or dining area is extra warm, that time shortens because as the temperature goes up, the quicker bacteria multiply.
If your homemade cranberry sauce has been sitting out all night, throw it out along with other turkey leftovers.
I always follow the 2-hour rule set out by the USDA. Using that, we know that cranberry sauce sitting out too long may contain harmful levels of bad bacteria and cause food poisoning when eaten.
How Long Does Homemade Cranberry Sauce Last In Fridge?
According to Real Simple, homemade cranberry sauce can last up to fourteen days in a covered container in the fridge.
Because cranberry sauce contains quite a bit of sugar and acidity from the berries, it might help maintain a longer shelf life, but not for long. The germs that can harm us always find a way to adapt quickly.
I’m always wary about consuming cold food that has been in the fridge for more than five days, so I always recommend using it as soon as possible or freezing it for later.
How Long Does Canned Cranberry Sauce Last?
Canned cranberry sauce usually has a manufacturing date or a use-by date labeled on it. And it may last for years past that date if stored in a cool, dry place.
However, the quality of your cranberry sauce will likely start to decline around the use-by date labeled on it.
To be safe, it’s best to consume canned cranberry sauce within two years of the canning date or use it by the use-by date as labeled.
If the can has any signs of damage, it may no longer be safe to use. Once air gets inside the can, spoilage bacteria, germs, and molds will take up residence and cause whoever consumes it to become very sick.
How Long Does Opened Cranberry Sauce Last In The Fridge?
Once opened, jellied cranberry sauce can last ten to fourteen days in the fridge.
Store your cranberry sauce in an airtight container and place plastic wrap directly on the top of the sauce to prevent it from drying out and forming a hard layer.
The question about storing opened food in a can is always brought up, and I recommend removing it from the can. By removing your cranberry sauce from the can, you can place it in a clean container and seal it much better.
How To Store Cranberry Sauce In The Fridge
- 1 Airtight Container
- 1 Sheet Plastic Wrap
- 1 Jar Cranberry Sauce Can be homemade.
- If your cranberry sauce is hot, you should cool it first. It will be easier to work with and help prevent moisture buildup and spoilage bacteria from growing while in the fridge.
- Transfer your cooled cranberry sauce to an airtight container and place a single sheet of plastic wrap on top of it. Press gently on the plastic wrap to help remove as much air from the surface as possible to prevent your cranberry sauce from getting a hard layer.
- Close your container, squishing out any excess air if possible.
- Label your container with the date and store it in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.