How to Properly Store Honey

Should I store my honey in the fridge?
Why are cool dry places recommended for storing honey?
Must I use glass containers?
My honey has become sugary, has it gone bad?

Firstly, cloudy or crystallised honey is nothing to worry about.

The great news about honey is that it never goes bad, and it’s very easy to store. Thanks to the high concentration of sugars, honey is one of the most stable, natural foods you will find. It doesn’t spoil even though no preservatives or additives of any kind have been mixed into it. If it’s stored properly, honey can have an almost indefinite shelf life.

Even if your honey begins to crystallise, there’s a very simple way to restore it.

Shelf life of commercial honey

You may have noticed that honey producers do put a “best by” date of about two years on their labels. This is done for commercial purposes. In reality, the shelf life of honey depends on how it’s manufactured, packaged and stored. Some natural chemical changes that can occur over time. You might notice your honey darken or crystallise. It may also lose some of its flavour and aroma, though it will not go bad in the typical food spoilage sense. Honey can be stable for decades, even centuries.

Should I store my honey in the fridge?

It is not necessary to refrigerate honey. If you like your honey syrupy, smooth, and slick then you probably shouldn’t put it in the fridge. When cold, honey will crystalise and can eventually become as hard as rock, making it difficult to use when you need it.

Honey may also be frozen, although there is really no need to do so.

Why are cool dry places recommended for storing honey?

The most damaging thing you can do to honey is expose it to heat and allow moisture inside the container. Storing honey at normal room temperature is the ideal. If your house tends to get warm, find the coolest spot in the pantry for your honey. Also, be sure to keep it away from the stove, any heat-producing appliances, and sunlight.

To avoid introducing moisture to your honey, make sure the container has a tight seal and use a dry spoon whenever you dip into a jar.

manuka honey five plusShould honey be stored in glass containers?

Not necessarily. It’s recommended that when storing honey, you use the original container the honey came in, though any glass jar or food-safe plastic container will work. Just avoid storing honey in metal, because it can oxidize. Our raw manuka honey comes in dark containers to keep it away from too much light.

How to fix crystallised honey

Do not be alarmed if your honey becomes cloudy during storage. Crystallisation is a process whereby the honey appears to thicken, become lumpy and grainy. It is in no way harmful, nor is it any indication of deterioration. Crystallisation is easily reversible and does not affect the taste and quality of the honey at all. So, please don’t throw away sugary-looking honey, it hasn’t gone bad!

Raw honey, like the honey we sell at Manuka Corner, or honey with high pollen content will crystallise faster than many commercially produced honeys.

If your honey crystallises, you can easily re-liquify it. You could put grainy honey on hot toast, the granules will melt as you eat. You can also place a granulated jar over hot water (about 40 degrees C). As soon as the granules are dissolved, remove the honey from the heat and let it cool as quickly as possible. Do not overheat it. Excessive heat may alter the flavour and colour if the sugars begin to caramelise.

Never boil your honey or vital nutrients will be lost.

Avoid the microwave as this can get too hot too quickly.

Honey that has been processed and heated will remain liquid for a few months. For this reason, some manufacturers carry out pasteurisation whereby the honey is heated very quickly and then rapidly cooled to slow down the granulation process. This is done so the honey will last longer in its liquid state and look more desirable on the shelves.

We do not pasteurise our honey. Our honey is raw, which means it has not been processed. It still contains the beneficial substances and heat sensitive antioxidants that are destroyed through pasteurisation and the beneficial nutrients like pollen, enzymes and antioxidants removed though filtration.

Knowing that honey is natural rather than synthetically altered is reassuring. At Manuka Corner, when you buy our honey, you can rest assured that is all you’re buying: raw, unpasteurised, lovely, natural honey. Raw honey is more nutritious and does not have any added sugars or sweeteners, which can be present in some commercial honeys.

Our raw honey is in its purest form, the way nature intended. Follow our recommendations for storing honey, and it last for ages, unless of course you eat it all – which you will!


Manuka Honey 20+ (MG 829+)

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