So you’re in the store looking at a can of evaporated milk, and you don’t know what it’s used for, it’s not sweet like condensed milk, and it’s not the same as powdered milk so that you can prepare normal milk. You heard that this is milk that was partially dehydrated and that it can be used in some foods, so you decide to take a couple of cans to prepare something at home.
Evaporated milk is very similar to condensed milk in terms of texture and color, but it does not have sugar, making it just as sweet. However, you can still use it in baking if you add some sweetener afterward and even for savory dishes that use cream or milk.
You may already know some things like that, but you still do not know how long it lasts in good condition and how you should keep it so that it does not get damaged, do not worry because here you will find the information you need.
How to store Evaporated Milk
Once you have bought your cans of evaporated milk, you should make sure you store them properly so they do not get damaged. After all, if you don’t take care of evaporated milk, it will inevitably end up going bad, and you have lost the opportunity to use it and would have to buy more.
Luckily this situation can be avoided if you are careful enough and follow a series of steps that will ensure that they will remain in good condition as time goes by, this way. You will not have to worry about them going to waste and that you have to replace your supply of evaporated milk.
You can recompile everything you have to do to properly store the evaporated milk in a couple of rules that will explain what to do and how to do it. These rules are:
Keep it in an appropriate place.
The fact that evaporated milk comes canned is good support for it to last long, but that does not prevent it from being damaged anyway. It is necessary to find a suitable environment to store the cans; it must be a cool, dry, and dark place to be kept in good condition.
Avoid heat sources
The can may protect evaporated milk from contaminants as long as it remains inside, sure, but it can’t protect it from temperature changes. Exposure to heat will eventually damage the condition of evaporated milk even though it is in a can.
Once again, the can is the center of attention because it plays the most important role when keeping the evaporated milk in good condition. It is the first and only line of defense. For it to do its job effectively, we must make sure that not be damaged. The main enemy of cans is humidity. They corrode it, cause it to rust, and damage it. That is the reason why moisture must be avoided at all costs.
Now, all of the above applies when the evaporated milk is sealed inside the can. If it is opened, the seal is lost. Although it is possible to improvise a seal with an elastic band and some wrapping material such as plastic or aluminum foil, it may not be very effective in the end.
When you open the can of evaporated milk, what you should do is the same as you do with other dairy products; you must refrigerate it. In this case, it is best to pour the evaporated milk into an airtight container before refrigerating it. Never keep it in its can if it is open.
Can You Freeze Evaporated Milk?
When it comes to long-term food preservation, freezing is usually an effective solution in most cases. Some foods can be frozen and defrosted without problems, others have problems when they are defrosted, and finally, some are damaged if they are frozen.
In the case of evaporated milk, you can freeze it once you have opened it, and in this way, you will extend the duration in which it is kept in good condition, but when you want to defrost it, the liquid will have separated, and there will be lumps at the bottom. This situation can be solved by mixing everything again, but the result will not be as good as an evaporated milk that has not gone through this process.
How Long Does Evaporated Milk Last
Because evaporated milk is a canned product, it benefits from a long shelf life because it is protected by a seal that, while it remains intact, will keep it safe from impurities from the outside and contact with the air. It is what allows any canned product to stay good for so long.
Usually, cans of evaporated milk come with a label on the outside that indicates the date on which it is no longer in its best quality. Even if it has passed this deadline, it is still suitable for a while longer. If you find a can without this label in a store, you won’t even be able to identify how long it’s been there, so it’s best not to buy it.
Regarding specific dates of duration, evaporated milk cans last a year while they are kept sealed in their can and three to six months more once they have passed the date indicated on the label. Evaporated milk that has been opened and kept refrigerated can last three to five days in good condition.
How to Tell If Evaporated Milk Is Bad
Before entering the subject, a situation that must be clarified, and that is that when an evaporated milk is opened, and it spends some time refrigerated, it tends to form a layer on the surface that is more solid than the liquid, this is not a sign of that it has gone bad, it just means that the fat you have has been separated. This situation can be solved if you heat the evaporated milk for a while, then all the components are mixed again by themselves.
Talking about the signs that if they tell you that evaporated milk is in bad condition, you can find significant color changes, such as darkening. For example, you should also pay attention to if the texture changes, becomes lumpy, and acquires an unpleasant smell. If your evaporated milk has any of these characteristics, you should discard it immediately.
If you take all the pertinent precautions so that the can is not damaged and if after opening it you refrigerate the evaporated milk, you will be making sure that it remains in good condition for as long as you have it in the storage on the indicated expiration dates.