Marzipan is a delicious treat that can be served in many ways. But what is the proper way to store it?
Can you freeze marzipan? Yes. Marzipan can be frozen to extend its shelf life. This treat is already shelf-stable at room temperature, but freezing gives it near-indefinite shelf life, provided that you follow all the recommended storage best practices.
Read below to learn more about marzipan, how to store it, and how to get the most out of its shelf life!
What Is Marzipan?
Marzipan is a pliable dough made from a combination of almonds, honey, and sugar.
It is also called “candy dough” and is a very popular treat that originated in Eastern Europe and was introduced by the Turks.
Marzipan is available in many different varieties and is usually paired with other flavoring or coloring ingredients to create fun confectionary art!
This dough is usually sold in elongated log-like shapes, but it can also be sold in brick form and shaped using molds.
Perhaps the best thing about marzipan is that it is very shelf stable on its own. A typical dough made from a combination of sugar, honey, and ground almond can last about 1 month at room temperature and up to 6 months in the fridge.
The reason why marzipan has a naturally long shelf life is that it contains very little moisture, a lot of sugar, and a bit of honey.
Honey, sugar, and a lack of moisture help naturally preserve marzipan by inhibiting the growth of harmful bacteria. But this doesn’t mean that marzipan can’t go bad!
How To Store Marzipan
If not eventually consumed or refrigerated, homemade marzipan can go bad after about 1 month at room temperature.
When we say “go bad,” we mostly mean that it can oxidize via air exposure and harden due to over-drying.
In other words, the flavor and quality of marzipan can go down considerably the longer it is stored.
Fresh marzipan will have a much more pronounced flavor and texture than a dough that has been stored for about a month.
Let’s take a look at some storage strategies to get the most out of the shelf life of homemade marzipan!
Most people leave marzipan in their pantry and don’t bother refrigerating or freezing it — because, let’s face it, no one can resist marzipan.
This treat is seldom stored for longer than a few days.
But if you do plan to refrigerate or freeze it, you might run into a few problems:
- Marzipan can dry over time and can become considerably hard and difficult to work with.
- Marzipan can lose its original texture and flavor if it is not stored properly.
To counter the first problem, the marzipan is usually rolled with cling wrap around it.
Cling wrap locks in moisture and keeps the marzipan from over-drying. But even with this protective layer, air and moisture can still leak out of the marzipan, especially if it isn’t wrapped tightly or has small openings on the side.
So, while this is a great way to slow down the drying process, it isn’t exactly a solution.
The second problem requires a few best practices. When storing the marzipan in the fridge, always keep it away from the door.
The door of the refrigerator is likely to experience the most temperature variance as it will be regularly exposed to hotter temperatures when you open the refrigerator, especially during summertime.
Marzipan stays fresh and retains its original flavor in cool and dry places. This is why we recommend that you tightly wrap the marzipan with a cling wrap and then store it at the back (or coldest) part of your refrigerator.
For peace of mind and added protection, you can store marzipan in an airtight container too. This will keep the almonds from oxidizing and will preserve the natural flavor and texture of the dough.
Consume the marzipan within 1-2 months for the best flavor and always inspect the dough for spoilage before using very old marzipan.
Freezing marzipan is an excellent way of preserving the dough for the long term.
How long? Well, frozen marzipan can remain edible pretty much forever so long it continues to be stored in optimal conditions.
Here are some steps to store marzipan in the freezer:
- After preparing the marzipan, tightly wrap it in cling wrap and allow it to cool at room temperature for at least 2-3 hours.
- Do not loosely pack the marzipan or it might not freeze well and will also not retain its signature log-like shape.
- After the marzipan has cooled, store it at the back of the freezer at 0°F. Leave the marzipan undisturbed during the storage period for the best results.
- You can also store the marzipan in a freezer-safe airtight container for added protection
- To thaw the marzipan, simply move it into the fridge at 40°F and thaw it naturally overnight.
- DO NOT microwave frozen dough!
Properly stored marzipan can last 1-3 years! But please keep in mind that the quality of the dough will eventually go down due to oxidization.
This means that while the marzipan may not go “bad” in the traditional sense, it will likely not taste great and will be way more difficult to work with as it hardens due to lack of moisture.
Things To Consider
Now that we’ve covered how to optimally store regular marzipan, let’s cover some factors that may affect how you should store your marzipan.
Marzipan can be dipped in chocolate or topped with whipping cream or jam.
There are several ways to decorate and pair this delicious dough – but each topping may require a slightly different storage approach.
For most high-sugar toppings, you won’t need to worry about storing the marzipan differently.
For perishable ingredients like cream or other dairy-based toppings, you will need to either consume the marzipan within a few days or store it in the fridge or freezer.
The best practice here would be to use a small portion of marzipan for the toppings and keep the rest of the dough in an airtight container.
If you plan to use all of the dough, then please refrigerate the leftovers and make sure that you consume them within a few days for the best quality.
Here is a quick summary of the storage life of homemade marzipan:
|Room Temperature (68–72°F)||Refrigerator (40°F)||Freezer* (0°F)|
|Homemade Marzipan||1 month||6-12 months||1-3 years|
|Commercial Marzipan||1-2 months||1-2 years||2-3 years|
Commercial marzipan is known to last longer because it is usually sweeter and may also contain preservatives.
Candy dough already contains honey, which is a natural preservative.
However, most homemade varieties (which are healthier) may not contain a lot of sugar, which is another factor that keeps the dough from going bad.
Remember: the higher the sugar percentage in the dough, the more it will resist bacterial growth!
This happens because the sugar removes excess moisture from cells via osmosis, thus dehydrating them and creating an environment that inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria.
Most storebought marzipans will have a combination of preservatives, honey, and high sugar content that will make them extremely shelf stable.
In most cases, if you leave the marzipan unopened, it will be able to last about 6 months at room temperature.
If you do open the packaging and use the marzipan, it will still be able to resist bacterial growth for months — but it will have to be refrigerated to keep it from oxidizing.
The best way to store commercial marzipan is to keep it in an airtight container.
Store the container in a cool and dry place in your pantry and enjoy the marzipan over the coming months — provided that you can resist the urge to eat it within just a few days!
Marzipan is a naturally shelf-stable treat that can resist bacterial growth, but it still requires proper storage to get the most out of its quality.
Now that you know how to store and freeze marzipan, here are some related questions.
Can you eat 3-year-old marzipan?
If the marzipan was stored properly and has a high-sugar content, then you might be able to consume old marzipan without worrying about its safety — the real question you need to think about is whether it’s worth it.
Marzipan is a very simple treat that can be prepared within a few minutes. Other than out of curiosity (or frugality), there’s no reason to eat marzipan that’s 3 years old.
It’s better to just eat fresh marzipan from the store or to make a fresh batch at home!
Does marzipan contain eggs?
Yes. Although marzipan can be made without eggs, some commercial and homemade varieties can also be made using egg whites. The egg whites provide a fluffier texture and give the marzipan a smoother mouthfeel.
The reason why it doesn’t endanger the marzipan is that the dough is generally dry, contains honey, and has a high sugar content, which keeps it from going bad.
However, you should always keep an eye out for signs of spoilage when dealing with homemade and less sweet marzipan.