Lemonade is a sweet lemon-flavored beverage typically made from freshly squeezed lemon, sugar, and ice.
It has different variations all around the world. Depending on the country and culture, they have various tastes and styles.
According to Wikipedia, lemonade can increase citric concentration which reduces supersaturation in the human body.
Lemonade is a good source of Vitamin C and can also promote hydration.
When it comes to refreshing drinks in summer, there’s nothing better than a freshly pressed lemonade to cool down your system. In fact, there is nothing more satisfying than chugging down cold-pressed lemonade after a long, hot day on the beach or a hot summer day.
Drinking lemonade is also a healthy way to treat and prevent kidney stones.
How long does lemonade last? Read further below to know.
How Long Does Lemonade Last? Does Lemonade Go Bad?
Unrefrigerated lemonade bought from the store is usually made from concentrate diluted with water to mimic the taste of actual lemonade.
Besides the concentrates, they also add some preservatives and pasteurization to kill any bacteria that might be inside the lemonade.
This production process makes the juice last for quite some time and does not require refrigeration when unopened.
Every batch of lemonade would come with a best-before date if you brought them from the store.
It’s impossible to give an exact date or how long it’ll last, but bottled lemonade bought from the store will last about three to six months.
But if you’re talking about homemade lemonade, it’ll easily last for five to seven days at least.
You should tightly close the lemonade in a container and refrigerate it.
Freshly squeezed, you should consume homemade lemonade within a day or two if you don’t store it in the fridge. It’ll also last for two to three months in the freezer.
Even though lemonade is an acidic type of liquid, it can definitely go bad. If it’s a preservative-free lemon juice, it goes bad real quick, especially if stored at room temperature.
Leaving lemonade out in the open at room temperature will hasten the level of spoilage more quickly. It will not last even for a day if it’s not stored in a fridge.
Freezing is the best way to preserve any type of juices and food. This is because freezing stops the growth of bacteria and other pathogens significantly. You can juice your bunch of lemons and freeze the juice too.
Even bottled lemonade can go bad, but they have an advantage – they have a longer shelf life. This is because of the added preservatives and high concentration during production.
An unopened bottle of lemonade could easily last up to a year if refrigerated. The best thing to do is to check on the labels for expiry dates.
How To Tell If Lemonade Is Bad?
Like any other juice, lemonade gradually degrades in quality first before it goes bad. It’s a slow process.
For bottled lemonade, the process is very gradual. As time passes, the quality deteriorates over time. If you don’t open the lemonade at all, the changes are easier to notice.
Some signs of spoilage are:
- Change of smell. If your lemonade smells more sour than average, it has probably gone bad.
- Change of taste. Lemonade, which has been kept unconsumed for an extended period, will gradually change its flavor. The taste will be sourer and sometimes bitter, so be on the lookout for this.
- Change of color. The color of your lemonade could appear off-white and won’t look normal over time. This means that it’s not fit for consumption, and you should throw it away.
- Growth of mold. Some mold may even appear on the surface. It’ll be obvious if you look closely, and will be strictly unfit for consumption.
All these guidelines apply to fresh-squeezed lemonade too except that the degradation process happens much quicker than the bottled ones. Within a few days, the changes will be quite noticeable.
Also, if you’ve stored the lemonade for over a week but looks perfectly fine, dispose of it.
The initial signs of spoilage are difficult to notice, and a week is a long time for fresh-squeezed juice. Better to be on the safer side.
If you have lemonade that is freshly squeezed or store-bought that show signs of spoilage, you should probably discard it as soon as possible.
Wikipedia states that the high concentration of citric acid in lemonade helps prevent calcium-based kidney stones.
Most lemonade has very short shelf lives. If you plan to keep it for a long time, you should find a tight container or pitcher to store it on and freeze it.
But that being said, you should drink the lemonade on the day you make/buy it.
Also, be wary of changes in smell, taste, and color. These signs could imply whether your lemonade is in a good or imperfect condition.