Evaporated milk is the milder, unsweetened version of condensed milk – perfect for those not a fan of the intensely sweet flavor of condensed milk.
Fresh milk is dehydrated until 60% of the water is removed, creating this creamy milk product.
Let’s say you bought evaporated milk as a substitute for condensed milk but never got around to using it.
Now your pumpkin pie recipe calls for a can but you start to worry: Has my evaporated milk gone bad?
Here’s the deal: an unopened can of evaporated milk can last 3-6 months if stored correctly. Whereas, opened evaporated milk should be used within 3-5 days regardless of the best-by date.
Signs Of Evaporated Milk Spoilage
With usual dairy products, look out for changes in the texture, smell, color, and overall appearance of your evaporated milk.
If the color changes from the usual slightly gold color to a darker brown, it is best to toss it out. If your evaporated milk is spoiled, it will have a sour or bitter smell to it. You may also find lumps or a general off-taste to your evaporated milk if it has gone bad.
If your evaporated milk shows any of these signs, be sure to discard it.
Storing Evaporated Milk
When it comes to storing your cans of evaporated milk, keep it in a cool, dry area.
If the cans have rust or bulges, throw them away immediately.
When you open your can of evaporated milk, store it in the fridge under a tight seal. A good idea is to empty it out into an airtight container. However, consume it in the next few days.
Maybe you’re thinking about freezing your evaporated milk to prolong its shelf life. This probably isn’t the way to go as it will separate once it is thawed after freezing. This will result in a greater loss of quality.
Although you can try freezing your evaporated milk and see if you’re content with the quality after use.
The Shelf-Life Of Evaporated Milk
Because evaporated milk is canned, it can last a longer time than regular milk. An unopened can last 3 to 6 months past its best-by date.
However, as soon as you open your can of evaporated milk, its lifespan becomes much shortened. You should finish it within 3-5 days of opening. This is regardless of whether you keep it in the fridge in an airtight container, or if you haven’t yet reached the best-by date.
You may be completely lost on what to do with your evaporated milk, but there are so many recipes that will leave your mouth-watering and you coming back for more.
But it is important to remember to inspect your evaporated milk for any signs of it going bad before use, especially if you’ve gone past the best-by date. A can of evaporated milk lasts pretty long but be sure to use it all once you open the can within a span of 3-5 days.