Does Worcestershire sauce go bad? (+3 things you need to know)

In this brief guide, we address the question, “Does worcestershire sauce go bad”, as well as other related questions pertaining to the subject at hand, like what is the optimal time for consumption, and what are the conditions that should be maintained to prolong the shelf life of this product.

Does worcestershire sauce go bad? 

Yes, worcestershire sauce does go bad. Worcestershire sauce is a food item, and all food items will eventually deteriorate.

The time it takes to go bad depends on various environmental factors and the composition of the sauce. Some of these include: 

  • Refrigeration 
  • Sunlight 
  • Proper sealing
  • Cross contamination 

What is Worcestershire sauce? 

It is a fermented food product that is made from a base of vinegar and flavoured with anchovies, molasses, garlic, tamarind, onion, and other seasonings. These ingredients give rise to a unique flavour that is both sweet and tingy. 

How much time does worcestershire sauce take to go bad?

Worcestershire is rich in natural preservatives Therefore the time it takes to develop a stale taste varies depending on the factor involved. 

Usually, the minimum time period it takes to go bad when opened and stored under normal conditions is 18 months. 

If proper conditions are maintained, and cross contamination is avoided then it can stay fresh for as long as 3 years (opened) to 5 years (unopened) 

You can read more about the storage conditions and taste here. 

Should you refrigerate Worcestershire sauce? 

It is not always recommended that you refrigerate worcestershire sauce if you plan on consuming all of it within the next 6 months. 

Depending on the storage conditions, your worcestershire sauce has a minimum shelf life of 6 months if it is not directly contaminated by an environmental factor. 

If you don’t know when you will be using it, then keeping it in the refrigerator is advisable. Refrigeration temperature ensures maximum shelf life of worcestershire sauce and it may last up to five hours. 

An interesting thing about fermented products is that you can never define a limit for their shelf life. Moreover, the dates mentioned on these products are not expiry dates. They are estimated dates for how long the food product will remain fresh and safe to consume. 

If you open a product after this date, there are chances that the product may not be expired and can be used. 

Other FAQs about Sauces which you may be interested in.

How long does spaghetti meat sauce last in the fridge

Interesting facts about Worcestershire sauce

Many different brands of worcestershire sauce are available. It is because of this reason that there exist different ingredients for the same sauce. 

Gluten Free Worcestershire sauce

Should you consume worcestershire sauce if you have gluten allergy? Yes of course! Different manufacturers are producing this product, therefore there is also gluten free worcestershire sauce. 

You just need to be careful in selecting the brand that clearly mentions it on the label. Just looking at the main label of the bottle isn’t enough. One needs to make sure by checking the Ingredients and the sources used that make up the sauce. 

Once you know that the brand is reliable and trustworthy, take it home and start seasoning! 

Vegan Worcestershire sauce

One of the ingredients in Worcestershire sauce is anchovies which is fish sauce. Due to this reason, it violates the boundaries of a vegan diet. However, replacing the anchovies with apple cider or soy sauce gives you the desired taste as well as keeping the sources vegan.

Vegan worcestershire sauce is also available in the market, but if you’re looking for a homemade recipe, here is a link 

3 Things you need to know about fermented products 

  1. Most fermented products like kimchi, sauerkraut, and pickles are high in salt. Salt acts as both a preservative and also promotes the growth of good bacteria. 

It must be kept in mind that high amounts of sodium are not ideal for health, and should therefore, be avoided. Increased sodium intake puts the person at risk of elevated blood pressure and negatively affects heart health.

However, these products have many beneficial roles if consumed in appropriate quantities.

  1.  Fermented products like yoghurt and cultured milk are rich in probiotics. Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that our body needs. Consuming these promotes digestive health.
  1. Although fermentation is a preservation technique employed in food items to enhance shelf life, yet the time required for deterioration is different for each food product. 

For example Kimchi is a fermented product that stays fresh for only 3-5 days. People usually consume it fresh. On the other hand, hot sauce can last upto 6 months in a cool and dark location. 


In this brief guide, we addressed the question, “Does worcestershire sauce go bad”, as well as other related questions pertaining to the subject at hand, like what is the optimal time for consumption, and what are the conditions that should be maintained to prolong the shelf life of this product.


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.