Can butter go rancid in the fridge?

In this article, we are going to answer the question “can butter go rancid in the fridge?”.

Can butter go rancid in the fridge?

Yes, butter can go rancid in the fridge. However, its shelf life is increased by 3 months when it is stored properly in the refrigerator.

According to studies, butter has a lengthy shelf-life even when stored at room temperature. It will, though, keep longer if refrigerated. Refrigeration retards the oxidation process in butter that results in rancidity.

Butter is almost 80 percent fat and has a very low water content. Therefore it provides an unfavorable environment for bacterial growth. It is quite simple to determine whether butter is rancid or not. We are going to elaborate on all the concerns related to this problem.

What is the best way to know if the butter has gone rancid?

Discoloration implies that the butter has spoiled. Good butter is evenly yellow in hue from the inside. If the inside of a small amount of butter appears to be brighter or lighter in color, it has become rancid. The formation of mold is seen by black specks on the butter. Butter that has become moldy should be discarded.

Is it possible to become sick from stale butter?


While rotting butter would not make you sick, it will smell and taste foul. Rancidity occurs when a substance is exposed to air, light, or heat. Therefore, to prevent rancidity, store your butter in a translucent glass container with a lid.

Is it possible for butter to go bad?

Despite being composed of dairy, which isn’t known for its extended shelf life, butter is a rather robust product because butter has low water content. Water provides a favorable environment for microorganisms to grow.  Butter can last up to two weeks at room temperature before spoiling.

You may also store it for a long period if you keep it in the fridge. Butter can be kept in the refrigerator for up to three months, according to USDA. It can also be preserved in the freezer for 6-9 months to use later. “Freeze butter is not meant to be used within 2 or 3 days,” according to a USDA booklet from 1995 titled “How to Buy Butter.”

How long can butter be left in the fridge?

Butter is used frequently, sometimes regularly. However, we are all guilty of leaving the butter in our refrigerator and worrying about it. Sure, if we’re talking about a few weeks, it’ll probably be alright. Butter should be kept refrigerated at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. 

If left at room temperature for an extended period, the oil in it grows rancid. Freeze butter for 6 to 9 months of long-term storage. It should keep in the fridge for a month after the printed date if untouched and two weeks once it’s been opened. Preserve by putting it in the fridge, cover it as soon as you get it again after each use. 

How do you tell if the butter has gone bad?

Spoiled butter is easy to spot. It will become too soft or too firm, and may even mold. If you’re not sure, look for discoloration, a sour odor, and/or a bitter taste.

You are now aware that butter expires, yet it still has a long shelf life. You’ll probably complete it before it goes bad, so just keep that in mind when storing it.

How long can butter be stored in the refrigerator?

It can be stored in the fridge for months, according to the USDA. It’s also feasible to freeze it for more than one year. After that, the flavor and texture will have changed significantly. You should buy only the amount that you can finish in one year.

Is it possible to eat rotten butter?

Although butter is resistant to bacterial growth, it is susceptible to rancidity due to its high-fat content. When fat spoils, it emits a foul odor and may become discolored, indicating that it should not be eaten.

What does it smell like when the butter has gone rancid?

If you take a whiff, you could discover that it smells slightly sour. This, together with the darker yellow layer, indicates that the butter has begun to go rancid. This smell is due to butyric acid. It results from oxidation.


In this article, we answered the question “can butter go rancid in the fridge?”.


What was missing from this post which could have made it better?

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.