Honey is one of nature’s greatest gifts to mankind, and it’s something we’ve all grown up thinking we have an absolute right to consume.
But if you’re not sure if your honey is still good, there are a few things you can do to check.
First, give the jar a sniff.
If it smells off or fermented, it’s probably bad.
Next, take a look at the color.
If it’s darker than usual or has started to crystallize, it’s probably bad.
You might also notice little black dots in the honey, which are actually dead bees.
The longer the bee lives inside the honeycomb, the more likely it is that those little bits will appear.
But if you find yourself wondering whether or not your honey is still OK, read on! Here are some ways to know if honey is bad.
- What are the signs that honey is bad?
- How can you tell if honey has gone bad?
- Is it safe to eat honey that has been sitting out for awhile?
- How long does honey last?
- What should you do if you think your honey is bad?
- Can bad honey make you sick?
- What does bad honey look like?
- How can you tell if honey has been tampered with?
- Is there a way to test honey to see if it’s bad?
- What are the consequences of eating bad honey?
What are the signs that honey is bad?
There are several things that can indicate that honey is bad.
The first thing you should do is smell it.
If you get any kind of funky smell — sour, fermented, or just plain nasty — chances are your honey is bad.
There are some exceptions, though.
For example, if you live near a beehive or have a lot of wildflowers nearby, it’s possible that the bees’ natural scent is going to seep into your honey.
That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s bad, but it could be.
It’s best to avoid this scenario by leaving your honey in a dark place (like the back of your fridge) where no light can reach it.
Next, look at the color.
If your honey looks dark enough to be considered amber or brown, it could very well be bad.
Dark honey means that the sugars in the honey have turned into caramelized sugar crystals.
These crystals don’t dissolve as easily when heated, so if you heat your honey, they’ll remain intact and won’t dissolve.
When you open the jar, the honey will be thick and sticky, much like syrup.
You might also notice that your honey has changed from liquid to solid.
This is called “curdling” and it’s another sign that your honey is bad.
Again, this is because it hasn’t dissolved as easily after being stored.
In fact, when you heat up your honey, you’ll notice that it gets thicker and sticks together.
Finally, if your honey crystallizes, you should definitely throw it away.
Crystallization is caused by too much moisture in your honey.
How can you tell if honey has gone bad?
There are a couple of other signs to keep an eye out for.
One of them is fermentation.
Fermentation occurs when yeast consumes alcohol in the honey and turns it into vinegar.
The result is often a strong smell, and sometimes a slimy texture on the top of the honey.
Another indicator is mold.
Molds thrive on food sources with high sugar content, so they love honey.
They can grow quite quickly, especially if the honey was exposed to air.
Molds can cause honey to taste musty and earthy, and it may even start to have a mildew-type odor.
Is it safe to eat honey that has been sitting out for awhile?
In general, yes.
The only time you should worry about your honey being old is if it smells strongly of mold, or if it’s become crystalline and hard.
In these circumstances, it would be unwise to consume it.
How long does honey last?
Honey lasts indefinitely.
However, since honey is made up largely of water, it does go stale over time.
The fresher your honey, the longer it will last.
You can store honey in an airtight container, and it will stay fresh for months or years.
Just don’t let it sit in direct sunlight, which can degrade its flavor and turn it rancid.
What should you do if you think your honey is bad?
The best course of action is to throw it out.
If you try to use it, it will most likely spoil or ferment, depending on how old it is.
Some people recommend storing it in the refrigerator, but that’s not necessary.
Just leave it alone, and it will continue to age naturally without spoiling or fermenting.
Can bad honey make you sick?
Most experts say that ingesting spoiled honey is generally harmless, although some people may experience gastrointestinal distress.
Because it contains bacteria, it may increase your risk of infection, but this risk is fairly low unless you eat large amounts.
If you suspect that your honey is bad, it’s best to throw it out before you get sick.
What does bad honey look like?
It depends on what type of honey it is.
Raw honey is usually clear and yellow.
Some varieties of raw honey have a stronger aroma and can have a slightly bitter taste.
Raw honey is great for cooking and baking.
Manuka honey is a particular variety that’s harvested from New Zealand and is prized for its medicinal properties.
It’s usually colored a deep gold and has a distinct smell and taste.
It’s used mostly as a nutritional supplement.
How can you tell if honey has been tampered with?
One of the biggest signs that your honey has been tampered with is small particles floating in it.
These are most likely pieces of wax, which are left behind from the comb that the bees constructed when harvesting their honey.
Since beeswax is incredibly useful, it’s understandable why people would want to steal it, but it makes the honey difficult to digest.
So don’t worry if you find tiny bits of wax floating around in your honey; it’s not harmful.
Another tip is to make sure that the hive from which your honey came from was not robbed recently.
A hive that’s been robbed will have dead bees in it, which could end up in your honey.
Finally, never buy bulk honey from someone who offers it for sale without checking the packaging.
Bulk honey comes in plastic bottles or containers that are not airtight.
This means that you cannot refrigerate it or freeze it safely.
It’s important to inspect the containers carefully before you buy it.
Is there a way to test honey to see if it’s bad?
Yes, if you find yourself worried about the quality of your honey, there are tests you can perform to determine if it’s good or bad.
First, you can pour a bit of it into a cup of hot water.
If it dissolves completely, the honey is fine.
If it remains undissolved, it’s probably bad.
What are the consequences of eating bad honey?
Honey is a product that’s packed full of nutrients, but it’s also full of sugar.
Too much sugar can lead to serious health problems, including obesity and diabetes.
If you have either condition, it’s imperative that you limit your sugar
Eating bad honey can also make you feel sluggish and tired, and it
can trigger mood swings.
If you have any of these issues, it’s wise to toss out the honey and replace it with a healthier alternative.
Honey BBQ Wings using Air Fryer
- 10 Chicken Wings whichever you prefer.
- 1 Avocado Oil canola, or peanut oil.
- 1 Salt
- 1 Black Pepper
- 1 tsp. Garlic powder:
- 1 tsp. Onion Powder
- 1 tsp. Smoked Paprika
- 1 cup Sauce
- 1 cup Barbecue Sauce
- ¼ cup Honey
- ¼ cup Hot Sauce I like something with a little kick, such as Frank’s RedHot
- 1 tsp. Garlic powder
- 1 tsp. Onion Powder
- 1 Salt
- 1 Black Pepper
- Preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees F.
- In a large bowl, combine the chicken wings, avocado oil, salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and smoked paprika.
- Toss to coat the wings evenly.
- Spread the wings in a single layer in the air fryer basket and cook for 20 minutes, flipping halfway through.
- While the wings are cooking, make the honey BBQ sauce by combining all ingredients in a small bowl.
- Once the wings are cooked, remove them from the air fryer and toss them in the honey BBQ sauce. Serve immediately.