Shelf Life of a Fruit Cake

It is a long tradition to give family and friends fruitcakes during the holidays. But since many people regift fruitcakes it is important to know how long they can last.


Fruitcake first became common in the Roman era because soldiers would take them to battle. In the centuries since, more ingredients have been added to the cake and they have remained popular with soldiers because of their long shelf life.


On average, a fruitcake weighs 2 pounds and can serve 7 people. It has a high density of sugar, which allows it to stabilize moisture and resist mold, which increases its shelf life.

Shelf Life

If fruitcakes are stored in tightly closed tins they can last up to 25 years with the proper preservatives, although they have the best taste if consumed before three years and have been refrigerated.

Fun Fact

Because there is a fine line between love and hate toward fruitcakes, residents of Manitou Springs, Colorado, meet every year for the annual Great Fruitcake Toss.

Fruitcakes and Weddings

Many couples save the top tier of their wedding cake to eat on their one year anniversary. Some couples choose to make this tier fruitcake so that it will still taste good at that time.

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