Does Eggnog Go Bad? How Long Does Eggnog Last?

If it is around the holiday season, you may be wondering if eggnog goes bad. Eggnog is a festive beverage that has its place on any holiday menu, but the amount of time it is useable will surprise you.

Quick Answer

Yes, eggnog does go bad. Eggnog has a short expiration date of less than a week if it is opened or unopened. Since homemade eggnog is not pasteurized and does not have preservatives, it can go bad quickly and easily. Store-bought eggnog also has a short lifespan but can extend the date by up to a week if stored correctly.


Read on to determine how to best store your eggnog and keep it fresh for as long as you can.

Does Eggnog Go Bad? How Long Does Eggnog Last?

Eggnog has a short life span, whether it is homemade or store-bought. The dairy products used in eggnog, especially egg yolks, make this only good for a week after it is made or bought.

How Long Does Eggnog Last Outside?

Eggnog should never be stored outside of the refrigerator. The ingredients of milk, egg yolks, and cream require refrigeration.

Eggnog placed in a pantry can cause the ingredients to spoil because of constant temperature rapidly. If you are not paying close attention, eggnog without proper refrigeration can spoil in a matter of hours.

If you are hosting a party and are serving egg nog out of a bowl, you need to make sure it stays cold by placing ice in and around the bowl. Unchlled eggnog can cause health concerns.

How Long Does Eggnog Last in the Fridge?

Eggnog should always be stored in the refrigerator. This ensures the ingredients have more time and can avoid spoiling.

Homemade eggnog will only last in the fridge for two to three days past when it was made. This kind of eggnog is unpasteurized and does not contain preservatives, making it have a fast spoilage rate.

Store-bought eggnog can last a little while longer in the fridge. If a carton is unopened, it can last up to a week from its sell-by date. Opened egg nog should be used within 2-3 days of its sell-by date.

How Long Does Eggnog Last in the Freezer?

Eggnog can be frozen indefinitely in the freezer. Just like other dairy products, lumps and separation can occur when frozen, causing it not to be an ideal solution.

The frozen eggnog should be used for baking or frozen as ice cubes to be used as a creamer. These recipes will not be impacted by the separation but will keep the taste.

The indefinite timespan that eggnog is good can make the freezer an attractive option, but you must check on the goodness of the eggnog before you use it.


Eggnog should not be stored anywhere but in the fridge. The expiration date can be extended by a little bit, but eggnog still has a short expiration date due to its ingredients.

How To Tell If Eggnog Has Gone Bad / How To Know Eggnog is Fresh

There are a couple of easy ways to tell if eggnog has gone bad. Each one is important to making sure your eggnog has not spoiled.

Appearance: It can be challenging to determine if homemade eggnog has gone bad only by its appearance. But if you notice lumps in your eggnog or the color has changed dramatically, there is a good chance it has expired.

Smell: Just like any other dairy product, if the eggnog is giving off a sour smell, it has more than likely gone bad. The smell will be sharp and a sudden odor.

Taste:  If you are unsure, you can always have a small taste of the eggnog. It will taste sour and have a lumpy texture, rather than its usual smooth one if it has gone wrong.

Time: Finally, if your eggnog has been sitting in your fridge for a week or more, it should be thrown out. The fresh dairy products will have expired by then because of the lack of preservatives.

How to Store Eggnog?

To properly store homemade eggnog, you need to follow the following steps:

Cool: After making eggnog, you need to let it cool down before storing it to ensure the eggs don’t cook.

Container: Pour the eggnog into an airtight container. A mason jar or another airtight container will keep the air from getting to your eggnog and spoiling it quickly.

Fridge: Place your eggnog in its container in the refrigerator. When it is placed in the refrigerator, you need to make sure it stays at a constant temperature.

Time: The eggnog will only be good for 2-3 days after being placed in the fridge.

Can You Freeze Eggnog? How?

Yes, you can freeze eggnog, and the process is quite simple. Follow these easy steps:

Choose how to freeze: First, you need to choose how you will freeze it. If you are going to use it as creamer, you can freeze it in ice cube trays. For other recipes, you can use an airtight container. 

Place into the freezer: Depending on what method you chose, make sure you place the prepared eggnog in a climate-controlled freezer. Make sure it does not change in temperature, which can cause freezer burn and make it unusable.

How to Thaw Eggnog?

To thaw eggnog, you need to make sure it is melted in a cool place. 

Refrigerator: To thaw eggnog, it is best to place it in the fridge overnight and allow it to melt properly. This will make sure it does not spoil.

Blender: You can also blend the frozen eggnog to make it have a creamy consistency, allowing it to thaw, but it still may have a watery texture.

Frequently Asked Questions About Eggnog’s Shelf Life

What happens if you drink expired eggnog? Aged eggnog that has not been pasteurized or mixed with alcohol should not drink. This is because raw eggs can cause salmonella or other food-borne illnesses. But when combined with alcohol, it has a longer shelf life and can last longer due to alcohol preservatives.

How long can you keep unopened eggnog with alcohol? Eggnog that has been mixed with alcohol can last up to 18 months if it is unopened and left out of the refrigerator. Opened eggnog can last a couple of weeks in the fridge. The alcohol helps preserve the eggnog for a more extended period.

Wrap Up

Eggnog should be stored in the fridge and only kept for a couple of days. If you follow these guidelines, you can keep your eggnog from spoiling and enjoy it for a couple of days.

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