In this brief guide, we will answer the question “How long does coconut milk last after expiration date?”, tell you how to properly store coconut milk, and how to thaw frozen coconut milk. We will also tell you what to do if coconut milk starts to curdle while reheating it.
How long does coconut milk last after expiration date?
Coconut milk can last for upto three to four weeks past its expiration date given that it has not been opened and stored properly. Once opened, it will last for seven to ten days when placed in the refrigerator.
“Expiry” date or “best before” date are just dates provided by the manufacturer that tell us how long the product will be in its best condition. After this date, the food does not necessarily go bad or get spoiled. It may just lose its texture or taste.
The key to keeping coconut milk for longer periods of time is to store it properly. You should keep it inside the fridge at all times to help protect it from harmful pathogens that can grow in it at room temperature.
You can not get sick from expired coconut milk given that it has no signs of spoilage. The most evident signs of spoilage of coconut milk are sour taste and an offensive odor.
If none of these signs are present, and the texture seems fine to you, then the chances of you getting sick after using it are very less.
Mold does not necessarily grow on coconut milk, but if it does, it can be easily spotted. So, remember to inspect the coconut milk for any mold before using it.
How to properly store coconut milk?
Coconut milk can be stored in the pantry, refrigerator, or freezer.
In the pantry
Coconut milk can be stored in the pantry in a cool, dry and dark place when it is unopened. Keep it away from moisture and light. Do not keep it near the stove top.
Canned and store bought coconut milk have preservatives added to them so they are shelf stable and kept in the pantry for a couple of months.
Homemade coconut milk, on the other hand, will not last in the pantry and will have to be kept in the refrigerator or freezer.
In the refrigerator
Once opened, coconut milk has to be stored in the refrigerator to avoid getting spoiled and contaminated.
Store it in an airtight jar and then place it inside the fridge. Coconut milk will last for about 7 days in the fridge.
In the freezer
Freezing coconut milk is a good option for when you want the coconut milk to last for a couple of months. Make sure to pour into an airtight container before placing it in the freezer.
You can also store it in ice cube trays if you want to use it for curries, stews or soups.
However if you wish to drink it every day then freezing is not a good option since it will take a long time to thaw.
One other drawback is that when you decide to thaw the frozen coconut milk, it may split up and become grainy.
How to thaw frozen coconut milk?
You can thaw coconut milk by taking it out from the freezer and placing it in the fridge. It may take a few days to completely thaw the coconut milk.
Alternatively, you can also place the coconut milk in a water bath and place it in the fridge or countertop.
Coconut milk frozen in ice cube trays will take much less time to thaw.
However, the texture of this milk may be too grainy or lumpy if you reheat it.
What to do if coconut milk starts to curdle?
Higher temperatures cause the coconut milk to curdle and form curds. Curds do not necessarily alter the taste of coconut milk but may alter its texture.
Small curds may even go undetected but if you are suspecting that the coconut milk is starting to curdle then keep stirring until they dissolve and blend. Constant stirring is the way to prevent coconut milk from splitting up.
If you are using coconut milk for something else for example in a curry, it is most likely to curdle owing to higher temperature.
In this case, add a tablespoon of cornflour to a bowl and mix it with water. Stir it to make a paste. Now gradually add this paste to the curry while stirring. Cornflour paste will bring the milk together again.
Learn more about cooking with coconut milk here.
In this brief guide, we answered the question “How long does coconut milk last after expiration date?”, told you how to properly store coconut milk, and how to thaw frozen coconut milk. We also told you what to do if coconut milk starts to curdle while reheating it.