How long will condensed milk keep?

how long will condensed milk keep?- Call Me Fudge

When it comes to condensed milk shelf life, there are many important factors to keep in mind. Is it canned condensed milk or another variety? Was the sweetened condensed milk stored properly? How long does condensed milk keep when opened? These are all important questions to explore when determining how long will condensed milk last?

Sweetened condensed milk should keep for at least a year or possibly even two years past the sell-by date on the can, as long as the can has not been opened. An opened can of sweetened condensed milk can last up to a week in the refrigerator due to the sugar content within the milk.

If you are currently wondering about the shelf life of sweetened condensed milk, this is the guide for you. We will discuss how long you can expect a can of condensed milk to last depending on whether it is opened or unopened condensed milk, as well as tips to follow to ensure a long shelf life providing the condensed milk is properly stored.

Read on to find out more.

Does condensed milk go bad?

Like any type of milk or dairy product, sweetened condensed milk does go bad. The good news is that you do not have to have the same worries as regular milk.

How long condensed milk lasts depends on various different details. But since this variety of milk is canned, it works within the benefits that come with canned goods that are tightly sealed.

The additional sugar in sweetened condensed milk gives it a slight edge in this area over its unsweetened counterpart – evaporated milk. The sucrose in sweetened condensed milk aids in the shelf life process, since the sugar can act as an additional preservative.

Since this dairy product is in an airtight container, condensed milk is protected from the chemical reaction processes in the air that can trigger once milk is exposed.

How can you tell if condensed milk has gone bad?

An easy way to check and see if condensed milk has gone bad is to smell the milk.

Smelling the milk for a rancid or off odor is important since sweetened condensed milk, when unopened, can last for years – even a year or two past the sell-by date. It is important to store the cans in a cool and dry place.

Opened sweetened condensed milk can last from one to two weeks as long as the can is refrigerated.

If you cannot gather any signs from the odor, and the sweetened condensed milk has a creamy, yellowish color, this is a good sign. A pale creamy color could indicate that the sweetened condensed milk has gone bad.

Fresh condensed milk will always have a thick texture when compared to evaporated. So it is also important to study the texture as well.

Ways to store condensed milk

There are numerous ways to ensure sweetened condensed milk lasts longer within food storage guidelines.

Homemade sweetened condensed milk should be treated the same as opened condensed milk, as the storage and sterilization process is a bit less since even an airtight container cannot mimic the effects of canned products.

So always try and use homemade condensed milk in a timely manner.

Frozen condensed milk, if stored in an airtight container, can keep for about a year in the freezer since you will have to watch out for a reduction in quality if you freeze it longer than that. So if you need to freeze sweetened condensed milk, keep these guidelines in mind.

Unopened condensed milk does not need any special food storage precautions since you do not need to freeze unopened cans, so it is perfectly fine to leave these cans in a cool and dry area and preferably a dark place such as a pantry to ensure the best quality.

Let’s take a look at some of the options you have for storing condensed milk.

Airtight container

If you have leftover condensed milk, you can always put the remainder of the liquid in an airtight container to increase its overall shelf life. In this method, the milk can last up to two weeks.

After about two weeks, and if not used, the milk should be discarded to prevent mold growth. If you smell sour milk, discard it.

Reusable jar

You can also use a reusable or resealable jar or an unopened tin which you can use solely for storing condensed milk. Make sure the jar or tin is sterilized to ensure prolonged shelf life.

Creating a seal with plastic wrap

You can also create a seal with plastic wrap or aluminum foil to create a sterile environment to help condensed milk last longer. You can either use a rubber band to ensure the wrap is sealed tightly to the container and stays intact, or press down the sides of the foil or wrap.

Can you freeze leftover condensed milk?

Yes, however, we suggest you use it in easy chocolate fudge recipes as the sugar crystals in the condensed milk after freezing may be manipulated. This may cause traditional fudge recipes to either not set or become very brittle and crumbly.


Can you get sick from expired, opened condensed milk?

The important distinction to keep in mind here are the differences between spoiled condensed milk and expired condensed milk. When determining how long does condensed milk last, first check to ensure the can have no holes or punctures of any kind.

If it doesn’t, the milk should be safe.

Spoiled milk or even milk past its expiration date can lead to a range of different ailments up to and including food poisoning.

Why is my sweetened condensed milk brown?

This type of milk can also turn brown if it is long past the sell-by date or has been exposed to air for too long. Always look for a yellowish, creamy color and a creamy smell that is distinctive to milk and sugar.

It is simply not safe to consume condensed milk that has turned brown.

Can you get botulism from condensed milk?

Botulism is a type of toxin that can attack your body with potentially fatal consequences. One way to tell if canned milk is infected with this toxin is the presence of swelling.

Additionally, dented can of sweet or evaporated milk are thought to be potential vectors for this toxin.

Make sure you always inspect the milk to ensure none of these factors are present. Apart from dents, botulism in condensed milk is also caused by milk that has gone far past its expiration date. Look for the characteristic swelling of the can when looking for signs of botulism.

In summary

Condensed milk can keep very well thanks to both its sugar content as well as its being stored in a can. Always inspect the milk to ensure it’s the proper color and smell if you are ever in doubt.

At call Me Fudge, we love a fudge recipe involving condensed milk. Make these fudge recipes today:


Hi, I'm Sarah and welcome to Call Me Fudge! From a younger age I've always pottered about in the kitchen and even selling my fudge in the high school grounds. Cooking and baking to me is like second nature and I want to share this passion with you.

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