Does oyster sauce go bad?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “Does oyster sauce go bad” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not oyster sauce can go bad. Moreover, we are going to discuss the shelf life of oyster sauce, ways to spot bad oyster sauce, and the proper way to store it.

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.

Does oyster sauce go bad?

So like all other food items oyster sauce also goes bad after a certain time. Once the oyster sauce goes bad, you will feel a difference in its smell, taste as well as appearance.

How long does oyster sauce last?

Commercially bottled, store-bought oyster sauce, lasts for about 2 years in the fridge at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, once it gets opened and that’s quite a long shelf life. But according to the FoodKeeper app, you should consume your oyster sauce within 3-6 months, once it gets opened.

On the other hand, an unopened bottle of oyster sauce stored in a cool, dry, and dark corner of your pantry away from direct sunlight and heat lasts for about 18-24 easily.

It is worth mentioning that these figures are just the estimated shelf life of oyster sauce and oyster sauce can even last for more than this, provided that it was stored properly. 

You can read about how to use oyster sauce here.

Is oyster sauce safe to use after the best-before date?

The “best by” or “best before” date that is written on the bottle of oyster sauce refers to the quality rather than safety so the oyster sauce doesn’t necessarily go bad immediately after the best before date. It is the time during which you can enjoy the peak quality and flavor of oyster but you can still use oyster that is past this date as long as it was stored properly and there is no leakage or mold in the bottle of oyster sauce.

How to tell if the oyster sauce has gone bad?

You should consider the appearance, smell, texture, and taste of oyster sauce to give a final verdict of whether or not oyster sauce has gone bad.

Appearance

If you spot a mold or organic growth on your oyster sauce, then the best thing you can do is to get rid of the sauce as it is an indication of bad oyster sauce but it is a really rare phenomenon. If you consume such oyster sauce, it can cause many foodborne illnesses including food poisoning that is characterized by nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and sometimes even fever. 

Moreover, if you see a green or white fuzz in the bottle of your oyster sauce then it is better to get rid of it.

Smell

If you smell something unpleasant or something that quite does not feel like the oyster sauce itself while taking a sniff test of oyster sauce then it most probably means that your sauce has gone bad and you should get rid of it.

Texture

Cornstarch is added to the oyster sauce during its processing to thicken it, so if you notice that water has started to get separated from the rest of the sauce and there can be seen separated layers based on the difference in densities that don’t make one homogenous layer again even after shaking or swirling the bottle, then it is better to discard such oyster sauce.

Taste

With time, the flavor of oyster sauce begins to get stronger, so if it gets too strong that it begins to mess up the taste of the dish in which you are using it, then it is recommended to get rid of such oyster sauce.

How to properly store oyster sauce?

  1. Oyster sauce darkens in color and becomes stronger in flavor quickly when it comes in contact with oxygen or sunlight owing to the oxidation reaction. Therefore to seal the freshness of oyster sauce for quite a long time, you should close the lid of oyster sauce as soon as you are done with pouring out the quantity that you need and you should always store it away from direct sunlight.
  2. You can store the unopened oyster sauce easily in a cool, dry, and dark corner of the pantry or kitchen cabinet away from direct sunlight and heat.
  3. When you have opened the oyster sauce it is better to store it in the refrigerator at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question “Does oyster sauce go bad” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not oyster sauce can go bad. Moreover, we discussed the shelf life of oyster sauce, ways to spot bad oyster sauce, and the proper way to store it.

Citations

https://www.stilltasty.com/fooditems/index/17852

https://www.doesitgobad.com/does-oyster-sauce-go-bad/#:~:text=All%20in%20all%2C%20oyster%20sauce,is%20the%20way%20to%20go.

https://www.theforkbite.com/does-oyster-sauce-go-bad/

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Mahnoor Asghar is a Clinical Nutritionist with a bachelor's degree in Nutrition and Dietetics. She is compassionate and dedicated to playing her part in the well-being of the masses. She wants to play a fruitful role in creating nutrition and health-related awareness among the general public. Additionally, she has a keen eye for detail and loves to create content related to food, nutrition, health, and wellness.

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