How Long Can Coffee Creamer Sit Out?

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As you probably already know, coffee can be taken to a whole new level when mixed with the right kind of creamer. But how long can coffee creamer sit out? You might be surprised to find out the answer! Join us as we navigate the multifaceted topic of how long coffee creamer can sit out.

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coffee creamers

Why Does Creamer Not Have to Be Refrigerated?

Actually, there are many times when coffee creamer does need to be refrigerated!

If you’re new to the world of coffee, you likely have many questions. Inquiries like, “Is coffee good for sore throat?” and “How many ML in a cup of coffee are there?” are bound to eventually come up.

But what about coffee creamer? Does it have to be refrigerated?

Yes and no.

Coffee creamer that comes refrigerated should be kept chilled,  however, there are types of creamers that do not require refrigeration.

Creamers that don’t require refrigeration often come in powder form. Though there are a few liquid creamers that can sit at room temperature, too. For example,  Coffee-Mate French Vanilla Liquid Creamer Concentrate –which lasts nine months on the shelf– does not require refrigeration.

Still, you should always check the label of your creamer. Ensure that refrigeration is not required before continuing to store your creamer at room temperature, especially once you’ve opened it.

Creamer Non Refrigerated

Remember that some creamers come unrefrigerated, which typically means that these creamers are shelf-stable.

These shelf-stable creamers often last a couple of years. In some cases, even longer when stored in the right conditions. These creamers aren’t typically liquid. Rather they are powders that can easily be mixed into your morning brew without the looming threat of making you ill like other creamer products containing dairy. 

How Long Can Coffee Creamer Sit Out of the Fridge?

How Long Can Coffee Creamer Sit Out Before It Is No Good?

Generally speaking, coffee creamer that is meant to be refrigerated can sit outside of the fridge for no more than two hours before it is no longer good. 

That’s because traditional liquid creamers that need refrigeration most often contain dairy. As such, they need to be kept cool to keep bacteria from making an appearance in the creamer bottle.

Drinking a creamer that’s dairy-free? Even so, stick to the script if your coffee creamer came refrigerated.

Just because a creamer is dairy-free doesn’t mean it isn’t susceptible to spoiling or becoming contaminated with bacteria if left out too long. 

Thus, the rule of thumb is that you refrigerate all refrigerated liquid creamers within two hours of using them. 

How Long Can Liquid Coffee Creamer Sit Out?

Liquid coffee creamer can sit out no more than two hours at room temperature, assuming that it needs to be refrigerated.

Remember that some versions of liquid creamer don’t actually need to be refrigerated. This is why you may see liquid creamers sitting on restaurant tables at room temperature. 

However, your best bet is always to check the package if you are unsure. Even if the creamer was sold at room temperature. In some cases, you may still need to refrigerate the bottle of a creamer after you’ve opened it.

How Long Can Non-Dairy Coffee Creamer Sit Out?

Non-dairy creamer may or may not need refrigeration, depending on the package directions and how it was sold.

A non-dairy liquid creamer that was sold refrigerated, or that indicates that it must be refrigerated after opening, will generally begin to grow bacteria after about two hours.

There are plenty of non-dairy creamers that will need refrigerated and some that won’t. Just be sure to read the package. Remember that if the creamer was sold chilled, you will need to keep it that way.

Check out a few of these popular dairy-free coffee creamers: 

creamer pouring over tea

How Long Can Coffee With Creamer Sit Out?

Coffee that has creamer that is powdered or that was sold at room temperature typically can sit out indefinitely until it expires, which is usually a year or two later.

Coffee that has creamer that is liquid or was sold refrigerated, however, can only be left out no more than two hours; after this, you will likely need to pitch your creamer as you run the risk of becoming ill or getting food poisoning by consuming coffee with creamer that was spoiled. 

How Long Can Coffee Sit Out With Non Dairy Creamer in it?

Coffee that has non-dairy creamer in it may be able to sit out longer than the two hours generally recommended for all dairy creamers, but this will depend on a few factors. 

If the non-dairy creamer came unrefrigerated to begin with, then it is likely safe to leave your coffee out for a little longer than two hours without experiencing harmful side effects. 

If, however, your non-dairy coffee creamer came refrigerated, you will want to place your coffee in the fridge within two hours of making your coffee.

How Long Can Coffee Sit Out With Dairy Creamer in it?

If the dairy creamer was refrigerated, you can expect your coffee to last only two hours before needing refrigerated. 

If you are at a coffee shop and are unsure about what type of creamer was used, try asking the barista or simply placing your coffee in the refrigerator after a couple of hours to be on the safe side. 

Typically, however coffee shops use cold dairy products to add creaminess and froth to your brew, so a powdered creamer is rarely used in these scenarios. Thus, it is best to finish your drink before a couple of hours is up; otherwise, you’ll either need to chill your drink or throw it out. 

How Long Can Coffee Sit Out With Powdered Creamer in it? 

Coffee that has powdered creamer in it can typically sit out for quite some time without making you sick, although there isn’t a definitive answer as to exactly how long your coffee can sit this way. 

Because powdered creamer can sit out indefinitely until its best by date — and sometimes a while after that– your coffee with powdered creamer isn’t likely to spoil quickly.

And though you may not need to refrigerate a coffee that has powdered creamer in it as quickly as you would one that has a liquid or otherwise perishable creamer in it, you will still need to exercise caution and use common sense. 

Remember never to consume your coffee with creamer after it has sat out for more than 24 hours. Most sources agree that even black coffee should be pitched after sitting out this long.

Will Creamer Go Bad If Left Out Overnight?

Creamer that indicates that it should be refrigerated after opening should abruptly be discarded if it sat out overnight.

Whether it be a creamer that contains dairy or a creamer that doesn’t, the fact is that if you consume a coffee with creamer in it that was left out at room temperature overnight, you are asking for trouble.

At room temperature, a creamer that is meant to be refrigerated can begin to grow all sorts of harmful bacteria that can lead to food poisoning. 

If you drank creamer that you think might have been spoiled or rancid, be on the lookout for the following signs of illness:

  • Stomach Cramping
  • Low-Grade Fever
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
Cold latte in a glass cup

How Do You Know If Creamer is Bad?

Creamer that has gone bad will likely yield the same signals that would spoiled milk: curdles, a sour smell, and an awful taste. If you notice any of these changes in your coffee creamer, especially if it sat out for over two hours, be sure to throw it away. It has the possibility to make you very sick. 

Remember that powdered creamer may not necessarily curdle or smell sour, however, it may change in color, consistency, or taste.

Instead, the powdered creamer that has gone bad likely won’t be as flavorful and potent as it had once been. If the powdered creamer contained dairy, it just might give you a stomach ache, depending on how old it was.  

Can Old Coffee Creamer Make You Sick?

Old coffee creamer can make you sick.

No matter if your creamer contains dairy or not, any product that is consumed after it has gone bad has the propensity to make you sick.

A rule of thumb is to always inspect the package for directions on proper storage of your coffee creamer. Do not to assume your creamer doesn’t need to be refrigerated just because you bought it at room temperature.

Be sure also to store any refrigerated liquid creamers in the fridge after no more than two hours of being left out. This will cut down on any bacteria that could potentially grow in your creamer. 

How Long Coffee Creamer Can Sit Out Depends on the Type

Remember that different types of coffee creamers will dictate how long the coffee creamer can sit out. Though refrigerated creamers will always need to be chilled within two hours of use, this isn’t always true for all liquid or powdered creamers. To know for sure, always read the instructions and package directions before storing. We hope this has helped! 

By Anna

Hey, I’m Anna; writer, editor and amateur cook extraordinaire! Food has been my life and my passion for the most of my life – it’s crazy to think I didn’t pursue a career in cooking. I’m obsessed! However, keeping cooking as an obsessive hobby has worked for me – my passion grows as the years pass by – maybe I wouldn’t say the same if it was also my day job! I hope you find cooking inspiration, entertainment and “stop and think interesting tid-bits” throughout my writing – and I’d love to hear from you if you’ve got anything you want to share. Food feeds the soul – so get eating!

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