What To Do With Leftover Formula Powder

Breastmilk in breast milk bottles

If you have some leftover formula powder and are wondering what to do with it, you’ve come to the right place. I’ll let you in a little secret; there’s a lot you can do with formula powder.

And just in case you are still in awe, feeding your baby on expired leftover formula is not an option. Here is what to do with leftover formula powder. But first;

How Long Does Formula Powder Last Once It’s Opened? 

As a new parent, it’s essential to know how long formula powder lasts once the can is open.

Most experts say once the bottle of formula is open, it must be used within one month. 

Sealed formula will last longer than one month, but you must not use it after the expiry date. It’s important to remember that the expiry date is not a suggestion.

And here’s why – the nutrients in the formula will start to degenerate after a while.

So in effect, the formula loses its nutritional content. This process is much faster once you have opened it.

Pumped breastmilk in bottles

NEXT READ: Does Diaper Rash Cream Expire?

Why You Should Not Give Your Baby Leftover Formula Powder If It’s Expired

It has no nutritional value

Once it starts to deteriorate, there’s no nutrition in the formula. 

You wouldn’t want to give your baby ineffective milk, would you? It won’t help to save money at the expense of your baby’s health. 

It may separate 

After the expiry date, the milk may not be the same consistency as before. So when you mix the formula, you won’t get an even mixture.

The milk may become lumpy, and it won’t flow evenly through the bottle making your baby suck twice as hard.

It may even cause the nipple of the bottle to get blocked.

It can make your child sick

 Just like you would when you eat bad food, babies can get sick from drinking spoiled milk.

Your little bubba may get diarrhea or vomit from milk that stays too long. 

NEXT READ: Baby Sucking Bottom Lip: Here’s Why It Happens and What to Do

Serious infection

Leftover milk may put your baby at risk of a severe infection known as Cronobacter Infection.

This infection loves to grow in dry places like your baby’s formula.

It potentially has horrible effects like blood poisoning, and can be life-threatening. 

What To Do With Leftover Formula Powder?

Surprisingly there are many things that you can do with leftover formula powder.

Here are other uses for powdered baby formula. 

Milk bath 

If you are a breastfeeding mom, you already have heard about the fantastic effects of milk baths.

From moisturizing dry skin, healing diaper rash to soothing itchy skin.

To make a milk bath, you substitute the water with your breastmilk.

Since the formula has pretty much the same nutrients as breastmilk, it could work just as well. A luxurious bath for the price of leftovers sounds good to me. 

Coffee or hot chocolate

It’s just milk. You can make your favorite warm beverage using the baby formula. It might taste a little funky if you’re not used to it.

But if you’ve got a whole can of good leftover formula powder, there’s no harm in treating your taste buds to something new.

Just make your coffee as you usually would and add the formula instead of your regular milk.

If you are going to do this while entertaining, remember to disclose to your guests.

Not everyone will appreciate your newfound love for formula milk.

hot chocolate with leftover powdered formula

For gardening 

Some of the nutrients in the formula are the same ones that plants need to grow. 

You may want to consider using it as a fertilizer for your plants. 

As long as it hasn’t gone entirely bad, it will help your plants grow.

Cracked hands  

If you don’t use gloves in the garden, your hands likely get dirty and cracked.

The formula milk powder can work as a cleanser and moisturizer for your hands.

Simply add some lemon juice to the powder. The lemon helps to clean while the powdered milk scraps off the dirt.

Wash your clothes 

To get rid of tough stains, mix the formula with water. Then put in your clothes to soak through the night. Some swear by this method to remove ink stains.

Works for white cotton too. Once it’s done soaking, wash it like you usually would and watch as the stains quickly get off.


All you have to do is mix the leftover formula powder with water to make a very thick paste.

Add colors of your choice and choose your canvas.

You can use it to make artwork or craft. Maybe even repurpose an old piece of furniture (yes, it works). Just paint it on and let it dry completely, and you’re good to go.


A woman shaving feet

Odd, I know, but it is a great idea. In case you run out of shaving cream, you make a milk powder paste.

Then rub the paste on the area you want to shave, and voila, you have shaving cream. 

Makeup remover 

You can use leftover formula powder for your nighttime makeup routine.

Just make a thick paste, and it’s good to use. The moisturizing effect of the milk will help your skin.

However, if you are lactose intolerant, do not try this.

Eat it 

If the milk is still fresh enough, there’s no point in throwing away perfectly good milk, right? You might just as well eat it yourself.

Some mothers say they enjoy formula even share with baby.

If your leftover milk is still good, there’s no reason why you can’t enjoy it yourself.


Can I use baby formula for baking? Oh, sure you can! Give yourself a treat and do some baking with the leftover formula.

It’s essential to make sure that the milk hasn’t gone bad before you try this.

Whip up a batch of muffins or cookies with the formula powder.


pancakes made with powdered formula

I know you might be wondering how. Well, let me tell you, you can make all sorts of yummy food using formula powder.

All it takes is substituting the milk in the recipe for the powdered formula!

From pancakes, ice cream to anything else you like. There are many different recipes that you can try.

Word to the wise, the milk should be reasonably within the one month period after opening.  

Put it on Craiglist or Facebook Marketplace

If the leftover powder formula is not past it’s expiry date, you could put it on craiglist or Facebook marketplace for free.

Someone may be in dire need of it and it will help them.

Donate it to a food bank in your area

If the leftover powdered formula is unopened, you can donate it to a food bank in your area or give it to your local church that has food shelters.

To Sum It Up

There’s no need to throw away leftover milk. You have plenty of other things you can try with the formula but within reason.

You don’t want to risk exposing your baby or yourself to sickness.

So if it’s gone past its expiry date or left open for a long time, the only logical thing to do is to trash it.  


Malt Ovaltine For Breastfeeding: Does It Increase Milk Supply?

Does Crawling Hurt Baby’s Knees?

Does Diaper Rash Cream Expire?

What Does It Mean When a Baby Looks Through Their Legs?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top