I just made shrub syrup, by cooking fruit in sugar water (~0.5-1 cup of water and ~0.5-1 cup of sugar), sieving it, and mixing vinegar into it (~3 tablespoons of 10% vinegar on 1 cup) and I'd like to know how long I can roughly keep it when storing it in the refrigerator after I filled it into clean (but used) screw cap bottles.

What I maybe should add is, that I don't intend to store the syrup for a very long duration without using it. I will open the bottles now and then to take some of it out.

I am aware of this canonical question, but since it is a mixture of various things and since I'm not that well-versed in the intricacies of food storage (or cooking in general actually), I wasn't too sure what to take from it and maybe there might be a more detailed question possible applying to this type of food.

  • Did you sterilize the bottles? While, in general, vinegars retard the growth of certain bacteria (botulism), some allow the growth of others that are harmful. You can avoid by sterilizing the bottles (boiling clean jars for 10 minutes and scalding the caps in boiling water) and your shrub should last about 6 months, tightly sealed, in the refrigerator.
    – Giorgio
    Aug 21, 2016 at 19:06
  • @Dorothy Oh, I didn't consider this. You might want to flesh this out into a proper answer. Aug 21, 2016 at 19:29
  • Though, what I might should have added, I don't particularly look for a long-term no-use storage situation. I inted to use the syrup now and then from the bottles. Aug 21, 2016 at 19:30
  • I'd still recommend that you sterilize as a safer method, particularly when re-using containers. Once opened, I would think they'd keep for 6-8 weeks.
    – Giorgio
    Aug 21, 2016 at 19:44

1 Answer 1


While, in general, vinegar retards the growth of certain bacteria (botulism), some allow the growth of others that are harmful. You should sterilize the glass containers by first washing them in hot water and soap, and then boiling for about 10 minutes and scalding the caps in boiling water. Filled and tightly sealed, your shrub should last about 6 months in the refrigerator. Opened and used occasionally, they should last 6-8 weeks, not unlike similar condiments that are kept refrigerated. Keep in mind that, should you include fruit in your original batch, it will age and, eventually, become a fruit vinegar.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.