Can you get sick from eating expired jelly?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “can you get sick from eating expired jelly” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not you can get sick from eating expired jelly. Moreover, we are going to discuss tips to properly store jelly.

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.

Can you get sick from eating expired jelly?

When it comes to jelly, you do not necessarily get sick from eating expired jelly as long as it was stored appropriately. 

Jelly has a very high sugar content and sometimes also has preservatives added to it therefore it does not provide suitable media for microbes to grow. 

Sugar is hygroscopic in nature which means that it has the ability to soak in water (it attracts the water molecules). Osmosis is the process in which water moves from a region of low solute concentration to a region of high solute concentration. The solute in this case is sugar. 

So the water content of sugar itself is almost nil, so what happens is that when bacteria land on the surface of the sugar the process of osmosis sets in. Thus, the water starts to move from the body of the bacteria to the sugar, thereby dehydrating the bacteria and killing them and that is the very reason lying behind why you do not potentially get sick after eating expired jelly.

So no doubt jelly can still be eaten once they go past the date printed on them but you can feel a change in its texture and flavor after a certain time so as long as you are okay with it, you can eat the expired jelly, it won’t make you sick.

It is worth mentioning that instead of the “expiration date”, you will find a “best by” or “best before” date written on the packet of jelly. 

The “best by” or “best before” date that is written on the pack of jelly refers to the quality rather than safety so the jelly doesn’t necessarily go bad immediately after the best before date. 

This date refers to the time during which you can enjoy the peak quality and flavor of the jelly but you can still eat jelly that is past this date as long as it was stored properly.

The shelf life of jelly can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. Unopened commercially processed jelly lasts for about 24 months when stored in the fridge at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. But it is recommended that once opened you should use it within a year to enjoy its peak flavor and quality.

It is worth mentioning that the figures mentioned above are the estimated shelf life of jelly and jelly can even last longer than this provided that they are stored properly.

But you should remember that if you see some mold or some yeast growth on your jelly then the best thing you can do is to get rid of it because it is an indication that your jelly has gone bad. Moreover, if you notice some off-smell (sour smell or something that smells like yeast) while taking a sniff test of your jelly then it is an indication that your fruit jelly has gone bad and you should discard it.

It is worth mentioning that when in doubt, it is better to get rid of the jelly because it is better to be safe than sorry.

So what you gotta do is to do the sensory evaluation of your jelly and if your sensory evaluation gives you a green flag, you are good to eat the jelly without the risk of getting sick.

Tips to properly store jelly

  1. You can store an unopened jar of jelly in a cool, dry, and dark place away from direct sunlight. You can store it in the cool dry part of your pantry or it is even good if you can store it in the refrigerator.
  1. You should always store the opened jar of jelly in the fridge.
  1. You should never open the jelly jar beforehand and should always close the lid immediately after scooping out some jelly. 
  1. You should never use a wet or dirty spoon to scoop out the jelly from its container.
  1. You should always use dry and clean cutlery to scoop out jelly.

You can read healthy homemade jello here.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question “can you get sick from eating expired jelly” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not you can get sick from eating expired jelly. Moreover, we discussed tips to properly store jelly.

Citations

https://www.smuckers.ca/Faq

https://www.stilltasty.com/fooditems/index/17293

http://www.eatbydate.com/other/condiments/how-long-does-jam-last-shelf-life-expiration-date/

https://phys.org/news/2015-08-sugar-added-food.html

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.

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