When you have a recipe calling for fresh lemon juice, there are two options: You can buy a bottle of pre-squeezed lemon juice (which is cheaper), or you can make your own fresh lemon juice from lemons.
If you’re like me, making your own lemon juice will save you money and time.
Plus, it will give you more control over how much sugar goes into your dish.
However, it’s important to know how to tell when lemon juice starts going bad.
Lemon juice isn’t just a single ingredient, but rather a mixture of different ingredients.
And as with most mixtures, some ingredients may spoil faster than others.
How long does lemon juice last?
To answer this question, we need to look at the ingredients in lemon juice.
The first thing you should note is that lemon juice contains water.
Water is an excellent preservative, so lemon juice won’t spoil quickly.
However, lemon juice also contains citric acid.
Citric acid is a natural preservative, which means that it keeps food safe from bacteria and other harmful organisms.
But it doesn’t do anything to keep lemon juice from spoiling.
Citric acid is acidic, which means that it reacts with other chemicals.
In lemon juice, that reaction causes the citric acid to break down into its component parts.
When citric acid breaks down, it releases carbon dioxide gas, which makes the lemon juice taste sour.
This is why lemon juice goes bad.
It loses its ability to preserve because the citric acid has been broken down by the oxygen in air.
The good news is that lemon juice isn’t very sensitive to oxygen, which means that it only takes a few hours for it to start losing its effectiveness.
That said, once your lemon juice starts to lose its flavor, it’s probably time to throw it out.
What about the citrus itself?
Leaving citrus on the countertop can cause it to rot.
Citrus can be preserved using various methods, including freezing, drying, and canning.
But the easiest way to store citrus is in the refrigerator, where it can stay fresh up to three days.
Does lemon juice go bad in the fridge?
Lemon juice does go bad in the fridge.
But knowing what to do about it depends on whether you are using bottled lemon juice or homemade lemon juice.
Let’s look at each option separately.
Zaalouk is a mixture of water, lemon juice, salt, and sugar.
It is used to flavor soups, stews, sauces, and other dishes.
Zaalouk is very popular in North Africa and Middle Eastern countries.
It is also sold commercially in grocery stores in those regions.
The problem is that zaalouk spoils quickly.
The longer it sits, the less effective it becomes.
This is because the lemon juice starts to oxidize and lose its acidity.
Once this happens, the zaalouk loses its flavor.
To avoid this problem, you should use zaalouk within three months of opening the container.
If you need to store it for longer than that, you should refrigerate it immediately after opening it.
Then, transfer it to an airtight container right away.
Bottled Lemon Juice
Unlike zaalouk, bottled lemon juice doesn’t go bad in the fridge.
However, it does start losing its effectiveness after about six months.
That’s why it’s always better to purchase freshly squeezed lemon juice instead.
In addition, you shouldn’t keep it in the fridge for longer than one year.
If you want to store your lemon juice in the fridge for longer than a year, you should freeze it first.
To do so, you should pour the lemon juice into ice cube trays and place them in the freezer.
After they have frozen, remove them from the trays and put them back into the original containers.
They won’t freeze solid, but they will be easier to handle.
Can lemon juice be frozen?
The short answer is yes, lemon juice can be frozen.
However, the process is slightly different than other types of food because of its acidic nature.
The acidity in lemon juice can actually cause it to freeze more easily than other foods, so you should avoid freezing lemon juice at all costs.
Here’s what you need to know about freezing lemon juice:
- It is recommended that you add the juice to your freezer immediately after squeezing it.
- Once it is frozen solid, it can be transferred to an airtight container and kept in the freezer indefinitely.
- This method works well for small amounts of juice, but larger containers may require more time.
- Because lemon juice contains citric acid, which helps preserve other foods, it can react with other foods and cause them to become spoiled.
- Afterward, it will continue to lose its flavor and turn brownish.
How can you tell if lemon juice is bad?
The first thing to check is the expiration date on the container.
If the lemon juice was bottled in September, then it probably won’t be good by January.
The longer it sits, the worse it gets.
But even if the lemon juice is labeled “Best Before” or “Use By”, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it is safe to use past those dates.
There are many factors that affect the shelf life of food products—including temperature, humidity, light exposure, and air pressure.
To see if the lemon juice is still good, try it out! If you pour a small amount onto a plate and taste it, you should get a pleasant citrusy flavor.
If you don’t, then you need to throw it away and start again.
Next, look at the color.
If the lemon juice looks yellowish or brownish, then it is likely spoiled.
It could also have a foul odor.
If this happens, then it is time to toss it out.
Lastly, take a look at the texture.
Does the lemon juice feel thick and grainy? This means that it has gone bad.
Sometimes, lemon juice with mold on top will look fine until you cut into it.
When you do, you might find that the inside is mushy and slimy.
That’s an indication that the lemon juice is no longer safe to eat.
How long does lemon juice last in the fridge?
There are three main components to lemon juice: water, citric acid, and pectin.
The amount of each varies depending on the type of lemon used.
A lemon with a higher concentration of pectin will be more tart than one that has less.
The first thing to look at is the expiration date on the package.
Pectin degrades quickly, and because this is the component that gives lemon juice its tartness, it will start to lose its flavor within a few days after opening.
As for water and citric acid, they don’t degrade any quicker than other food products.
Citric acid breaks down slowly, so it should keep for months, and water doesn’t break down at all.
So, the shelf life of lemon juice depends mostly on the quality of the lemon used.
For instance, I use Meyer lemons, which contain a high concentration of pectin.
They are also very sweet, so they tend to produce a lot of juice.
This means that my homemade lemon juice lasts longer than the average lemon juice.
But even though I use a super-sweet lemon, I still like to squeeze extra lemon juice into dishes whenever I can.
It adds a nice citrusy punch without adding too many calories or carbs.
So, how long does lemon juice last in the fridge? Well, it depends on how long you want to store it before using it.
For example, if you plan to use lemon juice within a couple of days, then you can keep it in the refrigerator for up to five days.
But if you want to store it for longer periods of time, then you need to refrigerate it immediately.
You can keep lemon juice in the freezer for up to six months, but I wouldn’t recommend freezing it if you plan to use it within a day or two.
Freezing lemon juice changes the texture and consistency, and it can become grainy.
And while we’re talking about storing, here are a few tips on how to store your lemon juice safely.
How long does lemon juice last in the freezer?
Lemon juice doesn’t really freeze well.
The acidity of lemon juice causes ice crystals to form on the surface of the liquid, which means that the lemon juice will separate out of its solution and become solid.
This makes it hard to store lemon juice in the freezer without spoiling it.
Because of this, lemon juice freezes best when it is frozen completely.
Once it gets to this stage, it can be stored in the freezer indefinitely.
However, lemon juice will still start to lose its potency after about six months of storage.
This is why it’s so important to use lemon juice within six months of buying it.
If you don’t use it up before then, you risk losing its effectiveness.
And because lemon juice is a very acidic substance, it’s prone to spoilage.
What happens if you drink bad lemon juice?
Lemon juice spoils quickly.
According to the USDA, lemon juice should last up to six months in a refrigerator.
But if you don’t keep an eye on it, lemon juice can start going bad after only a few days.
According to Food Safety News, lemon juice spoils because of bacteria.
The bacteria that causes the sour taste in food comes from “the genus Leuconostoc.” When the lemon juice is exposed to air, these bacteria grow and multiply rapidly.
As they do so, they produce acids that cause the lemon juice to become unpalatable.
So, what should you do if you find your homemade lemon juice is no longer palatable?
Here are the answers to frequently asked questions about lemon juice.
Will lemon juice spoil if it’s exposed to heat?
Heat can actually help prolong the shelf life of lemon juice.
In fact, heat speeds up the rate at which lemon juice spoils.
So, if you plan on preserving lemon juice, it’s best to cook it with food, such as meat and vegetables, instead of just leaving it out in the fridge.
The Lemon Juice Liver Cleanse – Step by Step
- 1 Pot
- 1 Milk thistle
- 1 Dandelion root
- 1 Lemon
- 1 Water
- 1 Maple syrup
- 1 Burdock
- 1 Beetroot
- 1 Cinnamon
- 1 Turmeric
- 1 Ginger
- The first step is to gather all of the ingredients.
- You will need milk thistle, dandelion root, lemon, water, maple syrup, burdock, beetroot, cinnamon, turmeric, and ginger.
- Next, you will need to make a tea using the milk thistle and dandelion root.
- Add 1 cup of boiling water to 1 teaspoon of milk thistle and 1 teaspoon of dandelion root.
- Allow the tea to steep for 10 minutes, then strain it.
- Next, you will need to make the lemon juice mixture.
- Combine 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of maple syrup, and 1 cup of water.
- Mix well and set aside.
- Now, it is time to begin the cleanse.
- Start by drinking the milk thistle tea.
- Then, drink the lemon juice mixture.