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Old 09-21-2006, 10:58 PM   #1
rella's fan
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Very OT - dumb question but does food coloring expire?

I wasn't sure where to post this but everybody here is so helpful I thought I'd give it a try. I am not a baker by any means but I just made my nephew his first birthday cake for daycare tomorrow. I used a Winnie the Pooh pan that I had and I also used the food coloring package by Wilton to get Pooh the right shade. It turned out very cute if I do say so myself but I just started getting anxiety that "what if the coloring I used expired?" I can't find an expiration date anywhere on the package but I've probably had the package in my cupboard for a couple of years. I am worried now that if the icing isn't good all the babies at daycare will get sick - should it be o.k.?
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Old 09-21-2006, 11:03 PM   #2
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I really don't think food coloring expires. I know when I was a kid we had the same bottles for years on end. Mine are at least 4 years old now, and I'm still here.

**Updated to since I had time to kill before DH gets home and I'm bored/curious, I did a pretty darn exhaustive search on the topic and found nothing to indicate that there is any kind of stated shelf life for food coloring drops. I think you're in the clear!
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Last edited by pearlieq; 09-21-2006 at 11:13 PM.
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Old 09-21-2006, 11:29 PM   #3
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I'm still using a package that I bought the first holiday season I lived in this house, which was 1994. No one has ever gotten ill.
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Old 09-22-2006, 12:36 AM   #4
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My mom used to decorate cakes for a living and no food coloring does not expire. Just don't get any sugar in it or it will harden and be useless. If useing it for frosting use a toothpick to put the food coloring into the frosting and throw the tooth pick away after each use
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Old 09-22-2006, 07:30 AM   #5
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Thanks so much everybody for the replies, I had a feeling I was being a little paranoid but wasn't sure!
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Old 09-22-2006, 08:20 AM   #6
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I have to laugh at that. I never even thought it could. My food coloring is at least 20 years old!!!
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Old 09-22-2006, 09:56 AM   #7
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If you have food coloring that is in the little jars and it goes hard, you can add a few drops of glycerin to it to make it a little smoother and easier to mix into your frosting. (No "clumps") But my mom has had food coloring for 10-15 years and it does not go bad. She has liquid and solid kinds.
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