Does Maple Syrup Go Bad? How Long Does Maple Syrup Last?

Millions of families love maple syrup, and it often doesn’t stay in the pantry or fridge long enough for most consumers to know whether or not it goes bad.

Quick Answer

A sealed glass bottle of maple syrup will last indefinitely, due to its high sugar content. Once opened, maple syrup will stay fresh for one year or more, if you keep it in the fridge. It can last indefinitely in the freezer. Stored at room temperature, an open bottle of maple syrup may begin to grow mold, but there is no predictable time-frame for it.


Many people seem to be divided on whether or not maple syrup truly “goes bad”. You might have to come to your own conclusion based on your experience.

Does Maple Syrup Go Bad? How Long Does Maple Syrup Last?

There are two types of breakfast sauce for your table, maple and pancake syrup, and there are significant differences in their shelf-life and nutritional value.

How Long Does Maple Syrup Last On The Shelf?

If left unopened, a glass bottle of pure maple syrup will last many years (if not indefinitely) in a cool, dry place. In a plastic container, it is recommended you refrigerate or consume it within a year. If packaged in tin, use within six months.

With the water boiled out, pure maple syrup is concentrated sugar, a natural preservative. Open and left at room temperature, water accumulates and creates the environment for mold to grow. This is also debated, as some will tell you they have never experienced a problem.

Pancake syrup is made mostly of corn syrup and stays fresh indefinitely in the pantry. It also consists of up to ten other ingredients, all lending to its imitation maple taste and its shelf life.

How Long Does Maple Syrup Last in the Fridge?

Pancake syrup does not need to be refrigerated to last. You can store it in the fridge, but you will need to microwave and warm it before you can use it.

Pure maple syrup keeps well in the refrigerator once the bottle has been opened. It is said to be able to last about a year, but it may begin to grow mold after about six months.

It is believed mold does not necessarily mean the syrup has gone bad, in the fridge or the pantry. It is said you can scrape off the mold, boil the syrup, and rebottle in a new, clean container. Only, try this at your own risk.

How Long Does Maple Syrup Last in the Freezer?

There is no evidence to suggest pure maple syrup can spoil in the freezer. Some manufacturers will still recommend you consume it within a year, to retain the best quality.

It is possible nobody has ever let maple syrup stay in the freezer for longer than a few years. Hypothetically speaking, it could potentially last decades. But why would you try it if not just for science?

If your container is damaged, the best thing you can probably do is to just throw it away. It will be contaminated by the moisture in your freezer, and because maple syrup does not freeze solid, it will certainly make a huge mess to clean up.

It can be a challenge to make sense of all the information about maple syrup’s shelf life. Basically, it can grow mold or lose quality if it is not stored properly, but it will not likely make you sick.

How To Tell If Maple Syrup Has Gone Bad / How To Know Maple Syrup is Fresh

It is rare to find maple syrup old enough to question if it is still good. But if somehow you do find yourself wondering, there are a few things you might notice.

Odor – Maple syrup should smell as sweet and delicious as you expect it to taste. If it smells a little off, such as a yeasty, fermenting, sour odor, go ahead and throw it away.

Flavor – Chances are, if you have been using the same bottle for a while, you may eventually notice a change in the flavor of your maple syrup. This could be a sign of spoilage, but may also just mean the manufacturer’s process was off.

Appearance – If you bought light brown maple syrup, and it begins to darken over time, this could be a sign that it has been sitting around too long. Maple syrup can also crystallize, but more often than not, this just means it was not processed to the highest quality.

Mold – If yellowish-gray mold begins to form on the surface of your maple syrup, or cloudy looking lumps float inside the syrup, it is usually recommended to throw the bottle away. Most experts believe this mold is not harmful, and the syrup can still be salvaged by removing the mold and boiling the syrup.

How to Store Maple Syrup? 100+ words

There are a few things to know about storing maple syrup so that you can maintain its freshness for as long as you desire. Proper storage is key in keeping any food product from going bad.

Pancake syrup can be stored, tightly sealed, in any pantry, cupboard, or cabinet indefinitely. It is made with preservatives, as well as concentrated corn syrup, and there is no evidence to suggest it will ever go bad even after it has been opened.

Store pure maple syrup in a pantry or cupboard until it is opened. It will not spoil until it is exposed to oxygen.

It is safe to store maple syrup in an airtight glass or plastic container in the freezer indefinitely. In the fridge, also in an airtight container, maple syrup can resist mold for several months or more.

Can You Freeze Maple Syrup? How?

You can freeze maple syrup and effectively retain its freshness for several years, or forever. If you happen to accumulate maple syrup that is no longer commercially sealed, freeze it.

Separate the maple syrup into glass jars. Maple syrup does not freeze solid, but instead will thicken and expand. Make sure you have enough room in each container to accommodate for this.

Airtight plastic containers will also be acceptable. Some people pour their maple syrup into freezer-safe bags or Tupperware to store it in the freezer. As long as air and moisture cannot touch it, your maple syrup will be safe for a long time.

Do not freeze in tin containers or ice cube trays. Maple syrup will take on the metallic taste of tin. And since it does not freeze solid, you will not be successful freezing it in ice cube trays and then transferring it to freezer-safe containers, as you can with other liquids.

How to Thaw Maple Syrup?

Pure maple syrup is not supposed to freeze solid. If it does, it usually means there is something different about the process used to make it. There are two common ways to thaw it for use.

Leave it out or in the refrigerator. If you leave it on the counter, it may take only a few hours. If you put it in the fridge, it may take up to a day.

Microwave the maple syrup slowly. Some prefer to microwave it about 30 seconds at a time, checking often that it does not overheat.

Frequently Asked Questions About Maple Syrup’s Shelf Life

You may still be wondering if the old bottle of syrup in your pantry has spoiled, and you may need some more information.

Can moldy maple syrup make you sick? The type of mold known to grow on maple syrup is typically harmless. Most often, mold on maple syrup will not harm you, but it is not recommended to eat it if you can help it. Many people are confident you can scoop any mold out of the syrup and consume it with no worries.

Can an opened bottle of maple syrup stay fresh in the pantry? In some cases, people choose not to store their pure maple syrup in the fridge, and have no negative experiences to date. It is not ever recommended, but if your maple syrup does not look, smell, or taste wrong, it is probably fine to continue using, even if it has been stored in your pantry.

Wrap Up

If properly stored, maple syrup can stay safe consume indefinitely. In most households, however, it is often consumed long before you need to wonder about whether or not it has gone bad.

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