How To Store Leftover Canned Cranberry Sauce In The Fridge

There's always an ongoing debate over whether canned cranberry sauce or a homemade version is supreme, especially during the holidays. Everyone has their own answer, but if you appreciate the version served straight out of the can with the ribbed markings and jelly-like texture, you need to know how to properly store leftovers. It's even more essential if you're one of the few in the family who likes canned cranberry sauce, because you don't want those leftovers to go bad before you can use it on a sandwich or fresh waffles.

To properly store that leftover canned cranberry sauce, it's best to keep it out of the can because the metal can rust in the fridge. Instead, store it in an airtight plastic or glass container with a lid that fully seals so that it doesn't start to grow mold and so the flavors remain as fresh as possible for a canned food. As a reminder, your fridge should be set at 40 F or lower, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

How to extend the lifespan of cranberry sauce

When you properly store leftover canned cranberry sauce, it can last up to two weeks in the fridge. If you don't think you can eat the leftover sauce within that time frame, try to use it in different ways, like as a topping for granola, an ingredient for salad dressing, or thrown into a fruit smoothie. Still not able to use all of those leftovers? Freeze them in a freezer-safe container, and they will last for about three months.

If you have an unopened can of cranberry sauce, there's no reason to open it and store it in the fridge. The best part about canned foods is their extended shelf life, so check the can's expiration date. For reference, an unopened can of cranberry sauce should be stored out of direct sunlight in a place like your cupboard or pantry, and it will last for a long while. According to the USDA, canned foods can last for years after their expiration dates, though the quality might decrease. But, if the can is leaking or rusty, it's time to throw it out regardless of age.