Honey can be kept for many, many years. It is not necessary to throw it away even if it crystallizes. Crystallization, incidentally, is a perfectly natural process that helps preserve the honey's flavor. However, to get the honey out of the bottle without difficulty, you will need to decrystallize it. To return the honey to its original state, you can use sink water, boiling water, or a slow-cooker. It all depends on the honey container.
Method 1 of 3: Using Sink Water to Decrystallize Honey in a Small Plastic Bottle
Step 1. Fill a pot with hot water from the sink
Open the tap corresponds to hot water to the end, without adding cold water. Do not boil or heat water in the microwave. Otherwise, you run the risk of melting the plastic. Just use hot water from the sink.
Plastic begins to lose shape at temperatures above 60 °C. Fortunately, most home heaters don't reach that temperature
Step 2. Place the plastic bottle upright in the water
The mouth of the bottle must be outside so that water does not enter the honey. For the same reason, never lay the bottle aside.
Step 3. Take the bottle out of the water as soon as it cools down
Test the water by hand to see if it is at room temperature. When that happens, take the honey out of it and see if it's still crystallized. Shake the bottle back and forth and see if the contents move without difficulty, or try squeezing the honey into a mug. If it takes too long to come out, it's probably still crystallized.
Step 4. Repeat the procedure as many times as necessary until the crystals dissolve
After each sauce, take a look at the honey and see if it is moving and coming out of the bottle smoothly. After the crystals disappear, use the honey and store it in a warmer part of the kitchen, with little change in temperature.
You may need to use boiling water if the honey doesn't describe in the sink
Method 2 of 3: Soaking a glass pot in boiling water
Step 1. Spoon the honey into a glass jar
Most brands of honey come in small plastic bottles these days. Remove the cap from the bottle, if that's the case, and pour or spoon the honey into a glass jar. A preserve jar, for example, is a great option. If the honey is too hard, place the bottle under hot running water to soften it before trying to pour it into the pot again.
- Most plastics cannot withstand temperatures above 60 °C. The material will deform on contact with boiling water.
- The water in the sink, on the other hand, is not hot enough to deform the plastic.
Step 2. Boil a pot of hot water in the oven
Fill a pot halfway with water and light the fire at water temperature. Then wait for the water to boil well.
You can also boil water in an electric kettle and pour it into a pot
Step 3. Take the pot off the heat and pass the honey pot inside it
Once the pot is off the stove, place the honey pot upright in the water. Be careful that it doesn't get submerged.
The water level should be close to the mouth of the pot. However, the container must not be submerged. Discard some of the water so that it does not cover the pot, if applicable
Step 4. Take a look at the honey after five minutes and repeat the procedure if necessary
Take the pot out of the pan and stir it from side to side without removing the lid. Watch out for chunks of honey that don't move when the liquid starts to run down the sides of the pot. When in doubt, repeat the procedure of boiling water and heating the pot.
Step 5. Dry the pot and store the honey in a warm place with few changes in temperature
Put the honey in a warmer cupboard. Avoid areas with high temperature fluctuations, such as around windows and heating appliances.
Method 3 of 3: Using a Slow Cooker to Decrystallize Honey
Step 1. Partially fill the pot with water
The ideal is to fill it up to ¾ of the height of the pot so that it doesn't get submerged. This will prevent water from entering the honey.
Step 2. Place the pan on “low heat” and check its temperature
Put a thermometer in the water to take the temperature or look at the pot manual to find out the lowest temperature it reaches. If it drops below 60 °C, you can put the plastic bottle inside the pan. Otherwise, transfer the honey to a glass jar before pouring it into water.
- Most slow-cookers have a minimum temperature of around 50 °C. In this case, it is not necessary to pass the honey into a glass container.
- Placing a small plastic bottle in water above 60 °C can cause the material to melt.
Step 3. Place the honey pot in the pan and let it soak for eight hours
It is not necessary to submerge the honey. Just fill the pot to the top of the pot. Check it every two hours to make sure the water is still below 60 °C. If it goes beyond that temperature, turn off the pan and let it cool. Then turn the pot back on and continue heating the water.
Step 4. Take a look at the honey after eight hours and heat it some more if necessary
Make sure the pot is not too hot and take it out of the pan. It is best to protect your hands with gloves. Turn the pot from side to side and look out for crystals or solid pieces that don't move as freely as the rest of the honey. If the crystals are still there, heat the honey pot a little more in the pan and take another look after an hour.
The duration will depend on how many pots of honey you need to decrystallize, as well as the intensity of crystallization
Step 5. Dry and store the honey in a warm place
To avoid having the same problem again, keep the honey in the warmest place you have. Avoid windows and never put honey near the oven, where the temperature tends to fluctuate a lot.