When you begin seeing new cranberries in the create aisles of the grocery stores you frequent, you recognize they’re in season. And it’s every too simple to purchase one bag too many when they look so fresh and yummy, and the price is reasonable.

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If you’ve bought an ext cranberries than you need, you have to know just how to store them and what’s their shelf life. No issue if you’re do cranberry sauce as a side because that Thanksgiving, or any kind of other food that has those shining red fruits, friend don’t desire the rest to go to waste.

This write-up is below to aid you avoid that. In it, we cover storage (and freezing), shelf life, and also going negative of cranberries. After analysis it, you should recognize what come do about your cranberries, so friend use all of them. Let’s dive in.

(credit: Henk valve der Steege)

How To keep Cranberries

Cranberries call for refrigeration (PSE, NCFHP, USC). Sure, they aren’t in the refrigerators in the grocery save or farmer’s market, yet they won’t sit there for too long. And also you most likely want to retain the top quality of the berries for the longest, so keep them chill in the fridge. If you’re buying bagged cranberries, throw them right into the crisper drawer in your refrigerator.


If you’re to buy cranberries in bulk, carry them to an airtight container or resealable freezer bag before chilling in the fridge.

While cranberries have actually a much longer shelf life than various other berries, freeze them is likewise an option. And also a perfect one if you currently know the you have an ext than you need within a pair of weeks.

Alternatively, girlfriend can constantly make homemade cranberry juice. That’s a great way to use a bunch of cranberries in no time.

(credit: Marina Khrapova)

How To freeze Cranberries

Cranberry is among the fruits that anyone agrees have the right to be frozen, no matter if friend ask us Cranberries (USC) or colleges such together Pennsylvania (PSE) or Michigan (MSUE).

When it pertains to how to carry out it, there are two famous options: dry freezing and freezing cranberries in your packaging.


If you’ve bought bagged cranberries, just chuck the bag into the freezer (MSUE, USC, PSE). If you’ve bought lock in bulk, carry them come a freezer bag first, then perform the same.

The second, somewhat more involved, method of freeze these fruits is dry freezing. There’s nothing complicated or at sight time-consuming about it, yet it’s tho much an ext hands-on than simply putting the bag into the freezer. Here’s exactly how it goes:

Prep the cranberries. sort out any type of bad ones, and also place the an excellent ones on a cookie tray in a single layer.Flash freeze the fruits. placed the tray right into the freezer and also leave the there because that a pair of hours. Ns usually put it over there in the evening and have the fruit frozen solid in the morning.Transfer frozen berries to a freezer bag or airtight container. The packaging protects the fruit from the cold, and it’s an ext convenient than maintaining a tray in the freezer. Label the package if you like.Put it back in the freezer.

Frozen cranberries retain high quality for 8 come 12 months ().

(credit: Anna Auza)

How come Defrost Cranberries

If you’re cooking with cranberries, there’s no require for thawing the fruits (USC). Instead, take it them native the freezer, rinse v cold water, drainpipe the overabundance water, and add to the food you’re whipping up. You re welcome remember about washing the berries, unless, that course, you’ve to wash them prior to freezing. Virtually all cranberries come unwashed.

If friend actually need to defrost the fruit (e.g., for a salad), put it right into the refrigerator for a couple of hours, climate wash and dry. Again, save in mind that cranberries have to be washed prior to you eat them.

How long Do Cranberries Last

If you buy cranberries in bulk and also leave castle in an open up bag in the fridge, castle retain quality for around two weeks (PSE). If you’ve bought lock bagged or followed the advice around putting them in a freezer bag, lock keep quality for around a month (USC, NCFHFP, PSE).

As usual, pre-packed cranberries come with a date on the label, and that date is a pretty great estimate of exactly how long they will store up for. That course, the red fruit will more than likely last a pair of days, perhaps a week, previous that date, however that’s about it. The longer you keep them, the much more soft and also bruised persons you will certainly find.


When buying cranberries in bulk, transfer them in a freezer bag, and label with purchase date. This method you won’t have to remember once you’ve purchase them and know about how lot time you have until you should use all of them.

CranberriesBest-by date + 5 – 7 days or 2 – 4 weeks

Please keep in mind the periods above are just estimates.

(credit: Alison LaFortune)

How come Tell If Cranberries are Bad?

For starters, allow me make certain we’re ~ above the exact same page as soon as it comes to how a ripe and also fresh cranberry have to be like. National center for home Food Preservation defines it as adheres to (NCFHFP):

The berries have to be brightly colored: fully red or yellowish-red with a smooth, glossy and firm skin.

Everything that doesn’t fit that summary is a bad cranberry, and also you have to sort it out. In particular, discard berries that:

are soft, shriveled, or wrinkled (i.e., look at dried out)have surface blemishes, bruises, signs of moldsmell off, sour, or funny

If you’re not certain that the cranberries that you have actually are perfect fine, discard them. Whenever you feel there’s miscellaneous off around a food product, you’re usually right. And it’s much better to it is in safe than sorry.

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Marcin is the guy behind invernessgangshow.net. ~ writing an ext than 300 write-ups on food storage, shelf life, and spoilage, he"s learned a point or two on the topic.