In this brief guide, we will address the question, “does molasses go bad” as well as other related questions pertaining to the subject at hand like how much time does molasses take to go bad or what are some of the storage practices needed to prolong the shelf life of molasses.
Molasses is obtained as a by-product from the sugar-making process of sugar beet or sugar cane juice. Molasses is a thick and dark syrup used as a sweetener. It is mostly used in baking and confectionery industry.
Types of Molasses
- Blackstrap molasses is a thick and dark-coloured form of molasses obtained by vigorously boiling the thick syrup.
- Light molasses is a lighter colour and less thicker than blackstrap molasses.
- Unsulfured molasses does not contain Sulphur dioxide as a preservative which prevents it from spoiling, so it will not last as long as sulphured molasses. It’s best to use within six months and keep it refrigerated once opened, instead of keeping it in the cabinet at room temperature.
Does Molasses go bad?
Yes, molasses can go bad. Any food item will go bad if you are not storing it properly. Molasses can have a long shelf life; it can be stored from few to several years depending upon the storage and handling practices.
Usually, the labels on the molasses jars indicate a life span of 2 years. It can be prolonged by storing it properly. The best by dates do not tell that products have gone bad. These dates do not have anything to do with its safety but with flavour and freshness.
How to tell if your molasses is rotten or spoiled?
It is hard to determine the age of molasses as it looks and smells the same even after a long period of time. Though a bit of flavour can be changed.
Spoiled molasses has mold growth on the surface or around the container and it has noticeable fermented odor. Moreover, if the consistency is thick and it becomes more viscous due to crystallization or grainy structure, the colour gets darkened. It indicates that your molasses has gone bad.
If the texture and smell of molasses is fine, try testing its taste. Spoiled molasses does not cause any food borne illness or make you sick. but it can affect the taste of the end product that you are preparing using it.
Molasses can last long even after the mentioned best by or expiry date if handled properly. But if you observe any of the above signs, immediately discard the whole container and buy a new one for yourself.
3 Tips to store molasses
Unopened jars of molasses should be stored in a cool, dry, dark area and will last for up to one year. 3 things to keep in mind when storing molasses are:
Humidity and heat are major threats to food materials and to molasses as both of these can accelerate the growth of bacteria into moulds. To avoid the microbial spoilage, store the container in a dark and dry place. Ensure proper sealing and cleaning of the lid prior to sealing to prevent insects and rodents from contaminating the product.
Molasses can be stored at refrigeration temperature: Refrigeration provides consistent temperature in a warm climate. Though refrigerated molasses will have thick consistency, you can use it after gently heating to reduce its viscosity.
Molasses loses its quality if it gets free access to moisture, so make sure that the container is covered with a lid or tightly sealed.
Can molasses be frozen?
You can place molasses in the freezer, but it is not recommended as it won’t freeze due to high sugar content. The water present in it will be crystallized and it will have a thick consistency. On thawing, it might have a grainy structure in it like that of honey, which may compromise the quality of molasses.
Tip to transfer the molasses: spray the opening of the container or jar in which you are going to transfer the molasses with cooking spray. This will make it less messy and easier to clean.
After all that we have discussed, it is safe to say that molasses can go bad. I mean, any food item will go bad if you are not storing it properly. In the case of molasses, the chances are highly unlikely because there is no special method involved.
In this brief guide, we have addressed the question, “does molasses go bad” as well as other related questions pertaining to the subject at hand like how much time does molasses take to go bad or what are some of the storage practices needed to prolong the shelf life of molasses.