How Long Does Formula Last?

55 hours of research 4 minute read

" Nothing to be embarrassed about - a common mistake some parents make is to mis-read the expiration dates on non-American baby formulas. No stress!  "

European baby formulas have provided parents with the supplemental and alternative nutrients they need to breastfeed.Parents can make sure their children receive everything they need for healthy growth and development while safeguarding their infant from unwelcome threats like bacteria by following proper handling and storage procedures. Safe formula-feeding procedures are among the most crucial things that many new parents need to acquaint themselves with. Your little one might be protected from bacterial infections and food poisoning by having their formula properly prepared.

We've put together a useful guide that addresses the typical formula-feeding questions on how to prepare, store, and serve formula in order to make it easier for you to get the hang of things.

Formula Preparation


Safely prepared infant formula is essential for the health of your child. Just to clear up some fundamentals, please take note of the following:

  • Wash your hands well with soap and warm water before preparing the formula, and make sure your baby bottle and accessories are spotless.
  • Boil 1 liter of water, let it cool for up to 30 minutes, and then strain it to remove any remaining bacteria.
  • Review the feeding chart. Read the feeding schedule that applies to your particular formula. Add the proper amounts of water and formula for your baby's age. In order to ensure precise measures, use the formula scoop that is included inside each box.
  • Use the scoop that comes with the infant formula and follow the directions on the back of the can unless your baby's pediatrician specifies otherwise.
  • After preparing the formula, it is always recommended to use it right away.
  • You must check the expiration date of the infant formula before purchasing it and before giving it to your child. After the expiration date, infant formula is never safe to use.
  • Additionally, you must never give your baby formula if the packaging is tampered with.

Important Information About Feeding

  • There are several mixing ratios for different baby formulas. Use only the scoop that came with your formula.
  • Only mix in water and scoops according to the manufacturer's recommended ratios. Do not add any more components as a supplement to the milk feeding.
  • The formula shouldn't be made in advance. Use the feeds right away, and get rid of any leftovers to preserve the greatest nutritious value.
  • The formula should be utilized within two hours of preparation. The risk of bacterial contamination from sources outside the formula could increase if it is chilled, stored, or heated in any way. Additionally, storage could cause the prepared formula to separate.
  • After opening, the formula must be used within 21 days. No unopened formula should be used after the date the manufacturer has indicated on the box.

How to maintain a formula box that is open


The same spot where you keep your bottles, pacifiers, and sterilizer is where many parents instinctively store their infant formula. Although it's the easiest choice, it's not usually the safest.

Especially if they are close to a sink, stove, or sunny window, kitchen counters, and cabinets can be warm and moist, which is bad for formula. A cool, dry location away from kitchen appliances should be your choice.

Popular Quality European Formulas with Extended Shelf Life

As we know, understanding the shelf life and storage guidelines of infant formula is crucial for guaranteeing your baby receives safe and nutritious feeding. Ensuring your baby always has access to fresh and nutritious feeding options is a priority for every parent. That's why selecting a formula with a long shelf life is vital. Here are three trusted formula options renowned for their quality and extended shelf life:

100% Organic formula with Extended Freshness

With Added Prebiotics and Probiotics to Mimic Breast Milk

HiPP's most popular formula

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HiPP Dutch

Popular With Parents Because: HiPP Dutch goes above and beyond European Union requirements for organic certification. To support a healthy gut microbiome, HiPP Dutch mimics natural breast milk by incorporating added prebiotics and probiotics, as well as immuno-boosting galacto-oligosaccharides sourced from organic lactic acid bacteria cultures. This GMO-free, gluten-free, soy-free, starch-free, corn syrup-free, and sugar-free formula provides optimal nutrition, all while offering an extended shelf life for your peace of mind.

Long Lasting Freshness

Vegetarian-friendly (Contains Plant-Based DHA and ARA)

EU and British Soil Association Certified Organic

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Kendamil Organic

Popular With Parents Because: Kendamil Organic is beloved by parents for its commitment to wholesome, organic ingredients and sustainable practices. Its gentle formula, with an extended shelf life, is free from palm oil and GMOs. It exclusively utilizes full cream cow's milk to create a lactose-based infant formula that closely mimics natural breast milk, making it an ideal choice for parents seeking a high-quality, long-lasting formula option.

Demeter certified (Organic++)

Easy-to-digest Goat Milk Formula with a Long Expiration Date

Popular for babies with sensitivity to cow's milk

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Holle Goat Dutch

Popular With Parents Because: Holle Goat Dutch is made from Organic Whole Goat's Milk, ensuring a wholesome alternative for parents seeking a gentle formula for babies with cow's milk sensitivities. It closely replicates the protein composition of natural breast milk and is enriched with lactose for easy digestion. Additionally, it offers the added benefit of an extended shelf life for your convenience.

Why it is not safe to keep formula in the refrigerator?

The formula shouldn't be kept in the freezer or refrigerator at any time. While it may appear that doing this will increase the shelf life of your formula, the humidity in the room will affect the box and cause the powder to clump. This implies that you're probably going to fill your bottles with more formula than water, which might dehydrate your baby and even harm their kidneys.


At normal temperatures, bacteria reproduce incredibly quickly. Even when a feed is refrigerated, bacteria can still exist and grow, albeit more slowly. It's better to give feeds one at a time as your baby needs them in order to lower the danger of illness.

Does Infant Formula Expire?


All European baby formulas are manufactured and packaged in accordance with strict requirements to ensure the health and safety of your baby. Each box or canister will be clearly marked with the use-by date, storage instructions, and manufacturer-specified factors for shelf life after opening.

A fascinating aspect is that the "European Baby Formula For Export" market seems to favor products with lengthy expiration dates of at least six months and often exceeding six months. Infant formula is shipped from manufacturers who have just created it because our warehouses are restocked daily and ship on a "first in, first out" basis.

After opening, does baby formula powder expire?

Baby formula that is manufactured in Europe is typically stamped with an expiration date that is up to a year if it is not opened. However, an unsealed container expires far sooner than the indicated expiry date, even when the powdered mixture is stored in the best possible circumstances.

Each brand gives recommendations for the ideal time to utilize an opened container of baby formula based on the ingredients and manufacturing process. Each infant receives the greatest quality nutrition by utilizing the box or canister of European powdered formula within the stipulated time frame.

What does the expiration date on a formula mean?

The expiration date printed on each box or can of infant formula is distinct for the particular production batch. Europe uses the day-month-year format for the expiration dates of baby formulas. Instead of using the American style MM/DD/YYYY for dates, it uses DD/MM/YYYY. Rest assured that we will never send out-of-date perishable goods.

American Date Format

Baby Formula Expiration

Manufactured: March 6, 2022
Expires: March 12, 2023

European Date Format

Baby Formula Expiratino

Manufactured: June 3, 2022
Expires: December 3, 2023

How long does formula last once mixed?

Can I store leftover formula for my baby to consume later?

If your child has already drank some of their bottles but doesn't want any more, what should you do? In this case, you have an hour to use it or throw it away. The short answer to the question of whether it can still be used after an hour is definitely no. The formula that has not been completely consumed after feedings should never be used or stored in the refrigerator. This is due to the possibility that saliva from your baby's mouth and infant formula could combine, which could result in the development of dangerous bacteria.

Additionally, it is known that milk-based foods like baby formulas stimulate bacterial development. Before feeding, the bottle should always be thoroughly washed and sterilized, and any leftover formula after feeding should be thrown. This is among the best ways to prepare baby formula.

At normal temperature, how long does baby formula last?

When you combine water and powdered infant formula to make a nutritious meal for your little one, the countdown to spoiling begins since bacteria develop at room temperature.

Infant formula that has been left at room temperature unopened and unheated generally has to be used within two hours. Both ready-to-feed formula and powdered formula usually adhere to the same standard.

Many of the EU organic formulations, however, that we sell in our store are only deemed secure to use up to an hour after being combined and allowed to cool to room temperature. As a result, make sure to review the manufacturer's specific instructions.

Why do formulas go bad after one hour?

Baby formula spoils quickly. Food that spoils quickly is baby formula. If left outside, it can quickly go bad. The temperature risk zone for food safety is defined as the range between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit when germs can start to grow. since of this, you should never keep a baby bottle at room temperature since you run the danger of the milk spoiling.

How long does a can of formula last

Even though it may be difficult to process all of that information, it's crucial to properly prepare your child's formula because small babies have delicate tummies and should be fed with the utmost care. But don't worry; once you get the hang of it, formula preparation will become natural to you. The most crucial thing to keep in mind is to always prepare your baby's formula exactly as directed, store it securely, and avoid reusing leftover formula or using infant formula after its expiration date.

The most crucial thing to keep in mind is to always prepare your baby's formula exactly as directed, store it securely, and avoid reusing leftover formula or using infant formula after its expiration date.

Consult your pediatrician if you're ever unclear about the best procedures for your formula-fed child.

Please be advised that this information is not medical advice and is only based on general tendencies seen in babies. When choosing a formula for your kid and when considering any changes to the formula, you should consult your doctor as your primary source of information and advice. When deciding on your child's diet or if you observe any changes in your child, always see your pediatrician first.

Top 3 Long Shelf Life Formulas

  1. HiPP Dutch Formula
  2. HiPP Comfort Formula
  3. Holle Goat Dutch Formula