Cranberries 101: How Long Do Fresh Cranberries and Cranberry Sauce Last?


Tangy-sweet cranberry sauce is a must-have when it comes to the holidays. And since fresh cranberries last a fairly long time in the fridge (and even longer in the freezer) you can always have the ingredients for homemade cranberry sauce on hand when you need them. Here’s what you need to know about storing cranberries and cranberry sauce:

How Long Do Fresh Cranberries Last?

In the fridge: You can keep fresh, raw cranberries in the refrigerator for 3-4 weeks. Refrigerate in a plastic bag or covered container.

• In the freezer: You can also freeze fresh cranberries; they’ll keep well for about 10-12 months in the freezer. 

• To freeze fresh cranberries: place in freezer in original plastic packaging, or if cranberries were purchased in bulk, place in airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags.

• There’s no need to defrost the frozen cranberries before using them for cooking or baking. 

How Long Does Homemade Cranberry Sauce Last?

• In the fridge: You can keep homemade cranberry sauce for 10-14 days in the refrigerator. Refrigerate the cranberry sauce within two hours of cooking and keep refrigerated in a covered container.

• In the freezer: You can also freeze homemade cranberry sauce. For best results, use the frozen cranberry sauce within 1-2 months. (See here for information on how to defrost food safely.)

How Long Does Commercially Canned Cranberry Sauce Last?

• An Unopened Can: Will stay at best quality for about 12-18 months when stored in the pantry in a cool, dry area. Bear in mind that “Best By,” “Best if Used By,” and “Use By” dates represent the manufacturer's estimate of how long a product will remain at peak quality; they aren't safety dates. So unopened cranberry sauce will usually remain safe to consume after that date, as long as it has been stored properly and the can is not damaged

• An Opened Can: Will keep for about 10-14 days in the refrigerator. Transfer the cranberry sauce to a covered glass or plastic container after opening. You can also freeze canned cranberry sauce, although the texture may become somewhat watery after thawing. Freeze in covered airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags. For best results, use the frozen canned cranberry sauce within 1-2 months. 

See Also:

How Long Do Thanksgiving Leftovers Last?

Does Pumpkin Pie Have to Be Refrigerated?

Guide to Storing Fruit: Where to Keep It



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