Sign In  |  Register  |  About Corte Madera  |  Contact Us

Corte Madera, CA
September 01, 2020 10:27am
7-Day Forecast | Traffic
  • Search Hotels in Corte Madera

  • ROOMS:

Why does fruitcake last so long? Ingredients and preparation of the dessert play into its longevity

Fruitcake can last quite a while after it has been made. Factors that play into the dessert's longevity include the ingredients and how it's made — here's what to know.

Fruitcake has built quite a reputation. It is known for its longevity, but also as a gift not widely preferred — although you can always regift. 

The origins of fruitcake date back to the ancient Romans, where a version of the dessert was made as a sort of energy bar to keep soldiers fueled for battle. 

These original fruitcakes were often made with pomegranate seeds, raisins, honey and wine. 


Fruitcake lasts for six months when kept in the pantry and up to a year when it is put in the fridge, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. 

Even though this is a typical length of time, the dessert is good for even longer. 

In 2017, a 106-year-old fruitcake was left by members of an Antarctic expedition in 1911. 

The main reasons a fruitcake lasts so long are the ingredients and the process of putting it together. 

An ingredient that contributes to the longevity of a fruitcake is the alcohol that is often used, according to Bryan Quoc Le, a food scientist, per Scientific American. 

Many fruitcake recipes include soaking the cake in rum, brandy or bourbon. This process makes the cake more acidic. 

There are fruitcakes that are made without alcohol, but these won't last as long as the boozy alternative.


When it comes to the fruit in a fruitcake, fresh ingredients are not traditionally used. 

Instead, dried fruit is ideal for this dessert. Since the fruit is not fresh, this ingredient reduces moisture in the cake, giving it a much drier texture. 

"Foods with low amounts of moisture, like fruitcakes and Twinkies, are resistant to the growth of microorganisms because you need a certain amount of moisture for spoilage and pathogenic microorganisms to grow," Le said per Scientific American. 

"If you can get rid of the moisture, you have something that’s nearly indestructible."

Fruitcake is not a light, fluffy delicacy. It is instead very heavy and dense. 

This allows the cake's freshness to remain many weeks, months and even years after it is originally made. 

Though eating a year-old fruitcake isn't likely to make you sick, according to Scientific American, the flavors won't be ideal after long periods of time. 

Fruitcake that sits for anywhere for a week to a few months is ideal for eating. 

For more Lifestyle articles, visit

Data & News supplied by
Stock quotes supplied by Barchart
Quotes delayed at least 20 minutes.
By accessing this page, you agree to the following
Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions.
Copyright © 2010-2020 & California Media Partners, LLC. All rights reserved.