What is the Shelf Life of Frozen Yogurt Toppings?
Owning your own frozen yogurt franchise is a fun way to make a living, but it also comes with a great responsibility to the health and safety of your customers. Although a frozen yogurt shop is not necessarily a full-fledged restaurant, there are still many rules and regulations that your store must comply with so that you make sure that your customers are not potentially being exposed to bacteria. Not only do you need to make sure that the yogurt itself is safe and has been kept cold for your customers, but you also need to make sure you are storing your toppings and other food items at appropriate temperatures. Here is a quick guide to the shelf lives of some popular items that may be in your fro yo shop. (Remember, these are just quick tips for the frozen yogurt novice or a refresher for old pros. Always be sure to check the guidelines of your frozen yogurt franchise or supervisor to make sure you are meeting all their requirements first and foremost.) Here are a few examples of the shelf lives of certain toppings according to eatbydate.com.
- Nuts (such as peanuts, walnuts, pecans). Most nuts can be stored in a pantry for about 6-9 months and can be stored in a freezer for up to one year. Always be sure to keep nuts contained in their own dishes and make sure that utensils touching nuts are not used for another type of topping as to help protect people with severe nut allergies.
- Canned fruit. Many frozen yogurt shops use canned fruit at their toppings bar such as maraschino cherries, mandarin oranges or pineapple. Canned fruit typically has a shelf life of seven days after it has been opened. Store in an airtight container in temperatures below 75 degrees.
- Fresh blueberries. Fresh fruit doesn’t have as long of a shelf life as canned fruit, so blueberries will last about 2-3 days if not refrigerated. Keep blueberries in a container with a lid to keep out moisture until ready for use.
- Fresh strawberries. Fresh strawberries should be consumed on the same day of purchase. Be sure to wash strawberries thoroughly before sitting out on toppings bar. If frozen, fresh strawberries can typically have a shelf life of six months.
- Fresh bananas. Once fresh bananas have been cut, they will start to brown within a few hours. Unopened bananas have a shelf life of about 2-3 days, depending on how ripe you prefer your banana.
- Chocolate. Although it depends on the type of chocolate you set out, chocolate usually has a fairly long shelf life. Chocolate chips have a shelf life of two to four months when just stored in the pantry. As long as chocolate chips are stored in a cool, dry place in a clean container it will last you quite a long time. Chocolate candy bars also have a shelf life of about two to four months when stored in a pantry in a cool, dry climate. When chocolate is frozen it can have a shelf life upwards of eight months.