Canned chicken broth has various culinary applications that need effective storage methods for long-term usage. Leftovers of chicken broth are a common concept since they cannot be emptied in one go.
Canned chicken broth can be kept a week or two after its use-by date. It does not go bad as it is not opened. So a chicken broth is good in the fridge for 4 to 5 days, provided it is sealed and stored in an airtight container.
The shelf life of chicken broth varies with different brands. Even the expiration date of chicken broth varies with different brands and their preservation methods.
In this article, we will dive deep into the factors that affect the storage of chicken broth and the duration for which it can be stored when it comes to a fridge or freezer.
The timings could be more accurate and precise as they vary with the conditions and brands of the product in general.
Let us jump right in.
Does Chicken Broth Ever Go Bad?
Before we come to know the duration of the shelf life of chicken broth, we need to make sure whether chicken broth ever goes bad. It usually comes as a canned product with a shelf life of 6 months or more.
If the cork is unsealed, then the broth should stay good until the printed-by date or even longer in some cases.
The date that is specified in the can is an indication to retain its freshness to the maximum. It does not mark the expiry of the product or guarantee its spoilage. So the chicken broth can remain together for months without any spoilage if preserved the right way.
How Long Does Chicken Broth Last In The Fridge?
1. Canned Broth
Store-bought canned chicken broths last in the fridge for up to 4 or 5 days. This applies if the chicken broth is preserved in a tight can and sealed from air intrusion.
Some brands of chicken broth recommend longer storage duration. In contrast, some of them are not intended for storage at all.
If you plan to store the chicken broth any longer than 4 or 5 days, it is better shoved inside the freezer. The timelines specified are tentative and subject to change depending on the brand, quality, and how the broth is stored.
If you have any doubts about retaining the chicken broth, you should finish it within a week or two. Looking at the date is very important when it comes to canned broth.
A half-open chicken broth cannot be preserved in the fridge for more than 4 or 5 days. It is very unsafe as it tends to go bad when it is not sealed well.
2. Homemade Broth
Homemade chicken broth is more susceptible to spoilage with no added preservatives and hence can be stored for up to 3 or 4 days in the fridge. It has to be again stored in a sealed container with airtight packaging that prolongs the shelf life of the broth.
Recipes also differ when it comes to homemade chicken broth. Some recipes recommend a longer storage time, but the thumb rule is that it cannot go longer than 4 days if made at home.
If you plan to use it a little longer, then go ahead and freeze it without any second thought. This might retain not only its life but also prolongs its shelf life.
How Long Does Chicken Broth Last After The Expiration Date?
There is no exact time duration for a chicken broth to retain its life. It varies according to brands, conception, and sometimes how fresh the chicken broth you have purchased is or even how you store it post-purchase.
Boxed chicken broth does not have a longer shelf life. It can retain its quality for up to 4 to 6 months maximum. Three months is ideal if you intend to store it any longer.
At any given point in time, if you choose not to have chicken broth for a long time like this, you can always toss it out and avoid the risk of consuming spoiled chicken broth.
Jarred chicken broth lasts longer for up to 4 or 6 months maximum. Using canned chicken broth for 6 to 9 months cannot be an issue.
Of course, if you are using expired chicken broth, make sure it is preserved in a sealed bottle or can without any exposure to the minimum extent possible. If the chicken broth is opened, use it as early as possible.
How Long Does Chicken Broth Last In The Freezer?
Chicken broth lasts in the freezer for two to three months maximum and not more than that. You can preserve the chicken broth however long you want, but the quality would go for a toss.
Its freshness would degrade slowly, and it is only possible to consume a quality-compromised broth if you have it after the specified timeline.
It also depends largely on how you are going to use the broth. If you plan to use a minimal quantity to cleanse a pan, then storing it in an ice cube tray and freezing it would be a good option.
If you plan to use the broth in a larger quality, as an addition to any recipes, then storing it in the freezer bag is the right choice.
Wherever you store it, make sure you give some head space in the can for the liquid to expand.
How To Tell If The Chicken Broth Has Turned Bad?
The smell of the chicken broth is the obvious sign of spoilage which radiates a funny smell to indicate that it has gone bad and cannot be used further. Sometimes the smell is so subtle that one needs to take a whiff to recognize that it has turned bad.
2. Opened Longer Than Suggested
Opening a chicken broth for a longer time than the specified timeline will spoil the chicken broth. If you know for sure that you have tossed the broth open for a longer time, it is important to discard it immediately.
3. If It Is Not Sealed Properly
Even though your chicken broth is well within the shelf life, if there is any bulging or swelling of the can, it is good to toss out the chicken broth. A chicken broth not sealed properly cannot have a longer shelf life.
4. Visible Signs
This may be a rarity, but chicken broth can show signs of spoilage if it is kept longer. There may be some deposits to indicate that it has gone bad, which also radiates an unbearable smell.
Fat Accumulation At The Surface Of The Broth
When chicken broth is refrigerated for a long time, some fat deposits settle on the surface, which is absolutely normal. It can be used without any issues, and if it has to be removed, the top layer can be scraped off carefully.
Sometimes the broth also leaves some residues as sediments which get accumulate in the bottom with a cloudy appearance. This is also normal, and the sediments can effectively be discarded.
Store-bought broths usually have a manual specifying how long a broth can be used and whether it will accumulate fat or sediments after some time. Reading them is useful in knowing when to discard them and retain them.
Should The Chicken Broth Be Refrigerated?
The unopened chicken broth, which is canned, should be refrigerated to retain a longer shelf life. The chicken broth has to be cooled after being cooked for at least two hours before it can be refrigerated.
The 2 hours rule should be followed to perfection without fail. If you have accidentally kept the chicken broth for longer than 2 hours, it is better discarded soon. If the canned chicken broth is not refrigerated for longer, bacteria multiply, rendering it unuseful.
Chicken broths last in the fridge for 4 to 5 days, depending on the brand and quality. It can be frozen for months together without any hassles. Storage has to be done in an airtight container that is sealed properly.
There can be no compromises to its storage because it may eventually spoil the broth. If you have kept the broth for more than 4 or 5 days, toss it out without second thought.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Does chicken broth ever go bad?
It usually comes as a canned product with a shelf life of 6 months or more. If the cork is unsealed, then the broth should stay good until the printed-by date or even longer in some cases.
How long does chicken broth last in the fridge?
Store-bought canned chicken broths last in the fridge for up to 4 or 5 days. This applies if the chicken broth is preserved in a tight can and sealed from air intrusion. Some brands of chicken broth recommend longer storage duration. In contrast, some of them are not intended for storage at all.
How long does chicken broth last after the expiration date?
Boxed chicken broth does not have a longer shelf life. It can retain its quality for up to 4 to 6 months maximum. Three months is ideal if you intend to store it any longer. At any given point in time, if you choose not to have chicken broth for a long time like this, you can always toss it out and avoid the risk of consuming spoiled chicken broth.
How long does chicken broth last in the freezer?
Chicken broth lasts in the freezer for two to three months maximum and not more than that. You can preserve the chicken broth however long you want, but the quality would go for a toss. Its freshness would degrade slowly, and it is only possible to consume a quality-compromised broth if you have it after the specified timeline.
How to tell if the chicken broth has turned bad?
If the chicken broth is opened longer than suggested, or if it is not sealed, odor and visible signs are the indication to tell chicken broth has turned bad.