Honey is one of the simplest foods to store at home, it is known that honey never goes bad. This is due to the low moisture content, antibacterial and acidic properties of honey. Even so, honey does become spoiled if you store it incorrectly.
When you purchase a bottle of honey, it is best to keep the honey in its original container that it came with. If the original container is leaking or damaged you can transfer the honey to a glass jar or food-safe plastic container. Do not allow the honey to have long contact with metal as honey is acidic and will react with metal by oxidation. Which means that it is best not to store honey in a metal container or leaving a metal spoon in the honey jar after using.
Simply store your honey in room temperature. Keep it in a kitchen cabinet that is away from direct sunlight while making sure you seal the container tightly. Do not try to refrigerate the honey as it is not needed and it will promote crystallisation of honey.
Avoid Heat and Moisture
Keep in mind that the two most detrimental things to honey are heat and moisture. Therefore, when using a spoon to scoop the honey, make sure it is dry before dipping into the bottle. Air contains moisture, thus, the bottle needs to be airtight to prevent moisture from entering the bottle. Mead is formed when Honey is fermented with small amounts of water, which lowers the quality of your honey. If you’re honey is exposed to excessive sunlight or high temperature it can cause the darkening of honey and at the same time cause the honey to lose it original smell and taste.
Honey Shelf Life
Honey in general has a very long shelf life that last from years to decades and even centuries. The difference in shelf life depends on how it is manufactured and also how it is stored. Usually, when you buy a honey, it will state a best before date which is usually around 2 years. This is needed for retail reasons as once it reaches the consumers hands the storing and handling of honey if not proper can reduce its shelf life. However, do not worry, as long as you know that heat and moisture are honey’s worst enemy, your honey will last a long time.
How to Fix Crystallized Honey
Crystallisation occurs much quicker when raw honey is stored in cold temperatures. Which is why it is not recommended to store honey in the fridge. However, there may be those who like to eat crystallised honey for its texture.
If your honey is crystallised it does not mean that it is spoilt. Simply put the bottle of honey in warm water and the honey will slowly turn to liquid. As mentioned before, heat is honey’s worst enemy, make sure you use warm water of temperature not more than 48 Degree Celsius. Do not leave your honey in the warm water for too long as you may accidentally pasteurise your honey and kill the nutrients that are stored in the honey.
Further Extend Shelf Life
You should not store your honey in the fridge but you can store your honey in the freezer. Storing honey in the freezer stops all activity in the honey which helps to lengthen the shelf life. Take note that honey expands when being stored in the freezer, therefore allow some space in the bottle when freezing. Once you are ready to use the honey, simply take it out and thaw it at room temperature.
Honey is very easy to store and hardly gets spoiled. You are also likely to use finish your honey much earlier than the best before date on the bottle. Even so, storing honey correctly is still important. Simply store your bottle of honey in a cabinet that is away from sunlight and heat, prevent moisture from entering the bottle by using dry utensils when scooping honey and making sure that the lid is tightly sealed. There you have it, the correct way to store honey.