How Long Can Miracle Whip Sit Out?

There is a great debate about which is better: Miracle Whip spread or mayonnaise. Some people believe that these are interchangeable, while others swear that one or the other is truly evil.

When you start exploring, you will find all kinds of opinions about the safety of leaving foods made with Miracle Whip and mayonnaise out at room temperature. 

Miracle Whip, like most mayonnaise-based salad dressings, requires refrigeration after opening to maintain its quality and safety. The cool temperature of the refrigerator helps to slow down the growth of bacteria and prolongs the shelf life of the product. While unopened Miracle Whip can be stored in a cool, dry pantry, once opened, it should always be kept in the fridge. Adhering to this storage guideline ensures that the product remains fresh and safe for consumption over its usable life.

Continue reading for specifics about storing Miracle Whip, the difference between Miracle Whip and mayonnaise, and some interesting facts and recipes for using Miracle Whip or mayonnaise.

Storing Kraft Miracle Whip

Refrigerating Miracle Whip

Miracle Whip should be refrigerated after it is opened. If you are serving a meal that has dishes made with Miracle Whip as an ingredient, they can sit out at room temperature for up to 2 hours before being refrigerated.

The Kraft FAQ website notes that if you’ve spread Miracle Whip on a sandwich, it will be good unrefrigerated for up to 3 hours.

Miracle Whip

Kraft recommends using an insulated lunch bag with a reusable ice pack to keep your lunch cold and preserve Miracle Whip’s best quality, taste, and safety.

Room Temperature Storage Of Unopened Miracle Whip

Kraft notes that the best by date on the label shows when Miracle Whip will be at its best flavor and freshness.

Stored properly in a cool, dark place, like your pantry, unopened Miracle Whip will be safe to eat for a month past the best by date.

You can extend the shelf life of an unopened container of Miracle Whip by refrigerating it as it nears expiration.

Refrigerating the bottle will add 2-3 months to the proper quality and taste of the Miracle Whip. 

Freeze Extra Miracle Whip

Finally, if you find yourself with too much Miracle Whip you can freeze it, although Kraft doesn’t recommend it.

Thawed Miracle Whip will be safe to eat, although it may lose some texture and flavor.

It will not retain its quality if you try to thaw and re-freeze Miracle Whip. Therefore, you might consider freezing Miracle Whip into smaller amounts of just a few ounces. 

A key to keeping frozen Miracle Whip tasing good is to keep it covered in layers to prevent air from getting to it.

For example, fill a small snack-sized bag with Miracle Whip, then wrap it in heavy-duty foil to help protect it from freezer burn.

When you defrost the Miracle Whip, you may need to whisk it to ensure that all the ingredients are well combined and haven’t separated in the freezer.

Miracle Whip Is NOT Mayonnaise

Now for the great debate — and the facts. Miracle Whip does not qualify as mayonnaise according to the FDA.

Mayonnaise has to be 65% vegetable oil by weight, and Miracle Whip does not have that much oil.

The FDA definition of mayonnaise is emulsified oil, vinegar, lemon juice, egg yolk, seasonings, and stabilizers. 

Miracle Whip contains water, soybean oil, high fructose corn syrup, vinegar, modified cornstarch, eggs, salt, seasonings, and a preservative.

The big difference in flavor between Miracle Whip and mayonnaise is the sugar from the high fructose corn syrup. Miracle Whip is sweet and tangy, whereas mayonnaise is tangy. 

Miracle Whip has less fat and fewer calories than mayo, but it has considerably more sugar.

When it comes to health benefits, you have to pick your battles. Remember that eating things in moderation is the key to a healthy diet.

How Long Can Mayonnaise Sit Out

Miracle Whip and mayonnaise are similar, so do they have the same kind of shelf life? Many people have heard that dishes made with mayonnaise, like tuna salad, can’t be left out at room temperature for long because of the mayonnaise.

The fact is, the chance of these foods spoiling is more likely due to the meat or eggs in the cold salads rather than the mayonnaise. 

Mayonnaise has a high percentage of acidity from lemon juice or vinegar. According to the USDA, this makes mayonnaise a little less likely to grow harmful bacteria than other foods when left at room temperature.

Due to this acidity level, an opened jar of mayonnaise may be safely left at room temperature for up to 8 hours.

If an opened jar of mayonnaise is left above 50 degrees longer than 8 hours, it should be thrown out.

An opened jar of mayonnaise will be good when continuously refrigerated for 2-3 months past the best by date on the label. 


Unlike Miracle Whip, mayonnaise doesn’t freeze well. It is safe to eat after freezing, but it tends to separate in the freezer, and whisking it back together doesn’t return it to the original texture.

Recipes With Miracle Whip

1.Vintage Yule Log Miracle Whip Recipe

If you have ever looked for a Miracle Whip or mayonnaise recipe, you might have found a classic recipe from the 1950s and 60s.

In the spirit of the season . . . and weirdness . . . consider this vintage “Yule Log” recipe. You will need an old-fashioned 2-pound coffee can for this one to make it round.

Combine 1 cup of Miracle Whip salad dressing, ¼ cup of honey, and 2 cups of whipped cream in a bowl.

Add 1 cup of quartered maraschino cherries and 1/4 cup of the syrup from a can of sliced pineapple. Drain the rest of the pineapple syrup. 

Stack the pineapple slices in the can and fill the middle and around the pineapple with the cream mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for at least 2 hours.

When it is frozen solid, cut the bottom off the can and run a spatula around the edges to remove the yule log.

Remove it from the can and roll it in chopped almonds. Keep it in the freezer until ready to slice and serve.

One commenter on this recipe suggested substituting cream cheese for Miracle Whip, and it might actually be good!

2.Miracle Whip Chicken Skillet

For a more contemporary recipe, try this one-skillet meal with chicken and cheese. In a large skillet, combine 1 ½ cups of white rice, 1 ½ cups of chicken broth, ¼ cup of Miracle Whip, and 1 Tablespoon of chili powder.

Add 4 chicken breasts. Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 25 minutes until the rice finishes cooking. 

Miracle Whip Chicken Skillet

Remove the lid and cook until the chicken is done, about 10 more minutes. Top with shredded cheddar cheese.  Serve immediately.

Miracle Whip Party Dip

Try this quick and easy dip for your next get-together. Combine 1 cup Miracle Whip, 1 cup of sour cream, ½ cup of bacon bits, 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, 1 tablespoon of finely chopped onion, and 1 teaspoon of dried dill.

Mix well and serve chilled with cur veggies and crackers.

Other Household Uses For Miracle Whip

Miracle Whip is good for more than just a sandwich spread or a salad dressing. Try some of these unusual tips for Miracle Whip around the house.

Miracle Whip is a good hair conditioner. Apply ½ a cup of Miracle Whip to dry hair and let it sit for 30 minutes. Shampoo it thoroughly and repeat once a week. 

Use Miracle Whip for a facial. Apply Miracle Whip and leave it on for 20 minutes, then wash your face with warm water.

While you have the Miracle Whip out, use it as an exfoliant on your rough elbows and heels.

Rub it in, let it sit for a few minutes, then rinse it off. It will also moisturize your skin and soothe a sunburn. 

Another interesting use for Miracle Whip is to remove grease or tar from your skin. Slather on some Miracle Whip on grease-stained skin, then wash it off to remove grease and grime.

Fun fact

Miracle Whip will remove other sticky things as well. It will take off the glue from sticky labels, a bumper sticker from a car, or chewing gum from a tangle of hair. 

You should also try rubbing it into your wood surfaces that rings have marred from people setting wet cups on them. 

Concluding Thoughts

It is probably still safe to eat if you have accidentally left your Miracle Whip out for longer than you intended.

However, Kraft recommends that Miracle Whip not be left out for more than 2 hours. They also recommend that foods made with Miracle Whip be refrigerated within 2-3 hours.

An open jar of miracle whip will be good in the refrigerator for 1-2 months past the best by date on the package.

You can keep an unopened jar of Miracle Whip in the pantry for about a month past the expiration date.

However, you can extend it to 3-4 months by storing an unopened jar in the fridge. Keep your Miracle Whip stored properly so it will add the perfect tangy zest to all your favorite recipes.

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