Cheesecake makes the best dessert. It’s sweet, decadent, and surprisingly filling! If you bought a whole cake to enjoy for later or got some leftovers, how do you store this dessert? More importantly, does cheesecake go bad?
As you know, cheesecake is made from dairy products, particularly cream cheese. These ingredients are quite delicate. This means cheesecake is susceptible to spoilage much more than other desserts. When it comes to figuring out the shelf life of cheesecake, the crust used as well as the different topping may affect the cake’s storage life. Cream cheese, being a high protein ingredient, is also susceptible to bacterial and mold growth. The eggs in cream cheese could also shorten its shelf life.
Image used under Creative Commons from Claire Thompson
Proper storage is a must especially if you bought a whole cake with no plans of eating it immediately or if you made a large batch of cheesecake from scratch. Just to avoid any nasty surprises, do not wait for a week before eating the cake; consume the cake or any leftovers right away to minimize the risk of spoilage.
How to Store Cheesecake?
Storing Cheesecake in the Refrigerator
The best way to extend the shelf life of cheesecake is to store it in the refrigerator. This goes for store-bought and homemade cheesecake. The ingredients are sensitive to heat and light and fridge protects the cake from unstable temperatures and light exposure.
One thing to keep in mind, store the cheesecake in the fridge as soon as possible. If you are storing store-bought cheesecake, make sure it does not get too warm on your way home. Otherwise, the risk of bacterial growth will be too high even if you store the cake in the fridge.
For homemade cheesecake, store the cake in the fridge as soon as it cools down completely. Letting the cake sit for too long at room temperature increases the risk of spoilage and bacterial growth. If the cake has been left sitting at room temperature for more than 2 hours, discard the cake. It’s best to store the cheesecake in an airtight container to protect it from fridge odors. However, if you have plans of eating the cake immediately, using the original packaging should be fine.
Image used under Creative Commons from Ella Olsson
Storing Cheesecake in the Freezer
This isn’t the recommended method of storing cheesecake but it can be done if only to avoid wasting an entire cheesecake. It’s a pricey dessert, after all! But be warned, freezing the cheesecake may alter its texture. The cheesecake’s once creamy and smooth consistency could turn grainy or crumbly once thawed. In addition, the milk solids may separate from the liquids, causing a watery texture. The flavor of the cheesecake may also change. If the cheesecake has toppings, thawing may cause the cheesecake to turn soggy.
We recommend dividing and transferring the cake slices in an airtight, freezer-friendly container to minimize flavor or texture changes. Freezing should only be done for short-term; we still recommend consuming the cake as soon as possible for optimal flavor and quality.
Shelf Life of Cheesecake
Generally, the shelf life of store-bought cheesecake is 5 to 7 days in the fridge unless the packaging label specifies a shorter shelf life. For homemade cheesecake, it will keep for 3 to 4 days in the fridge. To consume the cake as soon as possible, divide the cake into slices, take what you can eat and then freeze the rest for later. In the freezer, cheesecake will keep for at least 3 months. Some had great success storing the cheesecake longer than 3 months although the texture and taste of the cake won’t be the same after freezing.
Image used under Creative Commons from ponafotkas
How to Tell if Cheesecake Has Gone Bad?
The eggs in cheesecake increase its risk of salmonella and most times, there are no signs that betray the presence of bacteria. If the cake has been left sitting on the kitchen counter for more than 2 hours, discard the cake even if still looks good enough to eat. If the cake has taken on an off-color or it is giving off an unpleasant odor, throw the cake in the trash. Cheesecakes are prone to mold growth so if you are seeing specks of greenish blue, the cake has gone bad.
Does cheesecake go bad? Unfortunately, this yummy dessert goes bad pretty quickly so we don’t recommend storing the leftovers for too long. If you made cheesecake from scratch, it’s important to pack and store the cake properly and immediately to extend its shelf life!