Oyster sauce is considered a pantry staple in many households, especially if you love making Asian recipes. However, not many people consider the shelflife of their sauces and whether their sauces are still safe to use.
If you have oyster sauce in your home, you may be wondering if oyster sauce goes bad. I did the research, and here is what I discovered!
Does Oyster Sauce Go Bad?
Oyster sauce can go bad, especially if the oyster sauce is old or improperly stored. How long oyster sauce takes to go bad will depend on the storage conditions and age, but normally opened oyster sauce lasts for a few days or weeks unrefrigerated at room temperature or up to two years if kept continuously refrigerated.
Do you want to learn about what bad oyster sauce smells like, how to properly store oyster sauce, and if oyster sauce can grow mold? Keep reading!
How Do You Know When Oyster Sauce Goes Bad?
Generally, a good way to tell if your oyster sauce has gone bad is by looking for any changes in the original appearance, smell, taste, or texture of the oyster sauce.
For instance, oyster sauce typically has a syrup-like and rich texture with a deep brown color. Moreover, the oyster sauce tastes salty, earthy, and a little sweet, and oyster sauce usually smells meaty, fishy, and rich.
If your oyster sauce develops an odd appearance, flavor, or odor, it is best to throw your oyster sauce away.
For example, oddly thin and off-colored oyster sauce is a sign that the oyster sauce has gone bad.
What Does Bad Oyster Sauce Smell Like?
Normally, the bad oyster sauce will smell moldy or putrid upon opening the bottle. While oyster sauce may naturally have a meaty or fishy smell, the bad oyster sauce will smell distinctly putrid.
Therefore, if you notice a very strong and nearly unbearable smell when opening an oyster sauce bottle, your oyster sauce is probably bad.
How Long Is Oyster Sauce Good After Opening?
Typically, the oyster sauce can last for several days or weeks at room temperature after you open the bottle. However, opened bottles of oyster sauce can last for two years or longer if you keep the bottle refrigerated.
Therefore, your oyster sauce could be useable for a longer time given that the oyster sauce looks, smells, and tastes fine.
Does Oyster Sauce Go Bad If Unopened?
Oyster sauce can go bad if the bottle is unopened, but it will take several years and improper storage conditions to make the unopened oyster sauce go bad.
While there is no exact time, it is always recommended to check the label of your oyster sauce bottle to see the best-by date or expiration date.
However, the unopened and properly stored oyster sauce can still be good past the best-by date, usually still being fresh for 3-6 months after the best-by date.
Moreover, using oyster sauce past the best-by date can only be done if the oyster sauce looks, smells, and tastes like regular oyster sauce.
How Long Is Oyster Sauce Good For In The Refrigerator?
Generally, opened oyster sauce can last for up to two years if you keep the bottle of oyster sauce in the fridge. However, the opened oyster sauce will only keep for two years if you keep the bottle continuously refrigerated.
If you leave your opened oyster sauce out of the fridge for several days, there is a chance that the oyster sauce can go bad even if you kept it refrigerated before that.
Is Oyster Sauce Good If Not Refrigerated?
Oyster sauce can still be good even when the oyster sauce is not refrigerated for an extended period.
Occasionally, the oyster sauce can still be good after being opened and unrefrigerated for a few days or even several weeks depending on the temperature.
However, it is always best to keep your oyster sauce refrigerated once opened to ensure the oyster sauce’s freshness and preserve the quality.
Is It OK To Use Expired Oyster Sauce?
It is possible to use expired oyster sauce but only if the oyster sauce was properly stored in a cool, dark environment with an untampered bottle or if the oyster sauce was constantly refrigerated.
Another way to know if it is fine to use expired oyster sauce is by looking at the quality of the oyster sauce.
When the oyster sauce looks, tastes, and smells the same as regular oyster sauce, you can use expired oyster sauce.
Can You Get Food Poisoning From Oyster Sauce?
Like any other food, you can get food poisoning from the oyster sauce if your oyster sauce has been contaminated by bacteria.
Typically, bacteria is what causes food poisoning, so leaving a bottle of uncovered oyster sauce in the fridge or on the counter can contaminate the oyster sauce.
Therefore, it is important to keep your oyster sauce tightly closed after each use to prevent germs from touching the oyster sauce.
How Do I Make Oyster Sauce Last Longer?
Ideally, the best way to keep unopened bottles of oyster sauce is in a dark and cool area, such as a cupboard, away from heated appliances or any sudden temperature changes.
If you have an opened bottle of oyster sauce, it is ideal to keep the bottle in the fridge at all times to preserve the oyster sauce’s quality.
Can Oyster Sauce Grow Mold?
Oyster sauce can grow mold, especially if germs invade your oyster sauce and if you have old oyster sauce.
You may notice that your oyster sauce has grown mold if there is odd white, green, or yellow growth on your oyster sauce and if your oyster sauce smells moldy.
If you notice mold on your oyster sauce, you must throw your oyster sauce away immediately.
Check out our other articles to learn if oyster sauce contains shellfish, if the oyster sauce is the same as fish sauce, and what oyster sauce is used for.
Oyster sauce can stay in a cool environment at room temperature for several days or weeks after you open the oyster sauce bottle.
However, you can preserve oyster sauce’s quality and extend the shelf life by up to two years by keeping opened bottles of oyster sauce refrigerated.