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How Long Does Oyster Sauce Last? Can It Go Bad?

How Long Does Oyster Sauce Last? Can It Go Bad?

Oyster sauce is a popular flavor-packed condiment used in Chinese,

Thai and Vietnamese dishes. If you love or are just familiar with the taste of Asian cuisines, you might also be familiar with oyster sauce.

Oyster sauce is a thick, rich dark brown sauce made from caramelized oyster extract. Its smell and taste can remind you of the sweet caramel with a hint of the salty ocean. Add in the umami flavor to make it savory-tasting. Yes, that is the unique blend of oyster sauce. Oyster sauce does not taste or smell funky and fishy as the fish sauce is. And, it is also not too salty as soy sauce. Culinarians suggest to avoid cooking it in high heat whenever you are going to use oyster sauce because it will lose its umami flavor. Instead, the sauce should be added whenever you are about to finish cooking your dish so that it can preserve its savory taste.

Oyster sauce is available worldwide. You can grab a bottle of this savory thick, velvety brown sauce at the Asian section of the grocery store or in Asian shops or online. If you haven’t tried using oyster sauce, especially when you are not allergic to oysters, then you should consider it adding to your cart the next time you go grocery shopping. Try to explore the flavor of oyster sauce and use it in your dipping sauces, glaze, stir-fries, salad dressings, soups, or add it in your meat or vegetable marinade.

So, how often do you use oyster sauce in cooking? How do you store it after opening a pack of it? What do you do with the leftover oyster sauce that was packed in cans or pouches? How can you tell if it is still usable after you have stored it for an extended period since you usually use other kinds of sauces for cooking?

Here, in this article, get to know about the storage, shelf life, and spoilage attributes of oyster sauce. Let’s find out!

How to store oyster sauce?

Take note of these following tips on storing oyster sauce correctly:

1.Look for a cool, dry, and dark place to store your unopened bottle of oyster sauce. A cabinet in the kitchen or the food pantry would be the best place for your oyster sauce.
2.See to it that you should store your oyster sauce away from sources of heat. Particularly away from appliances that produce health such as the oven, stove, toaster, or the dishwasher.
3.If you have some leftovers from a pouch or can of oyster sauce, you will have to find a jar with a good lid and transfer the sauce into it. Seal it tightly, then refrigerate it.
4.The refrigerator is another storage option for your oyster sauce, especially after opening it. Apparently, it is recommended to refrigerate your oyster sauce but, at the same time, not necessary. It is good to refrigerate oyster sauce because cold temperatures can help preserve this thick brown sauce for an extended time. You might also notice that some oyster sauce products come with labeling that says “refrigerate after opening.”
5.Make sure to inspect the oyster sauce before you are going to add it to your dish.

Providing the ideal storage condition for your food can help cut food costs and contribute to the environment by minimizing food waste.

Can oyster sauce go bad?

Yes, it can. Oyster sauce is prone to mold growth, and the texture gets ruined when you have it kept in the wrong storage condition.

Also, note that it is natural for the oyster sauce to darken over time. That indicates that its flavor also gets stronger because of oxidation. If the taste of your oyster sauce has become too strong for your liking, feel free to discard that. However, that does not mean that it is already spoiled, though. The taste just got stronger to the point that using it for cooking is already useless.

How long does oyster sauce last?

The shelf life of oyster sauce depends on the manufacturers’ production, and it also relies to a large extent on storage conditions. That is why you have to check the “Best-by” date on the label to give you an idea of how long it can still hold its prime. Basically, an unopened pack of oyster sauce has a shelf life of 18 to 24 months.

Generally speaking, the oyster sauce can last up to two days or weeks at room temperature after opening it. However, the quality degrades faster, which is why it is recommended to store it inside the refrigerator. This thick sauce’s shelf life made with oyster extract depends heavily on the producer and the quality. In other words, the higher the quality or kind of oyster sauce you got, the longer you can expect to last.

If you have your oyster sauce refrigerated after opening it, it can last from three to six months. Again, the higher the quality, the longer its shelf life to last.

How to tell if it has already gone bad?

Identifying whether or not your oyster sauce has already gone bad is quite tricky. Check for these following signs:

1.Mold growth. Dispose of the oyster sauce if you see some white or green fuzzy stuff growing on the surface. Never use it for cooking!
2.Off-smell and taste. If your oyster sauce gives off a strange odor, or its flavor is not the same as you first opened it some time ago, there is no way to save it but to just throw it away.
3.Watery. If you see that the water of your sauce has started to separate, this shows that this bottle is already old. The reason why your oyster sauce is thick is that it contains cornstarch as its thickener. Over time, the starch may reach a point where it can no longer hold water. So, it separates and makes your oyster sauce watery. You may also discard it and just get a new oyster sauce

Generally, an old-stored oyster sauce undergoes changes in its flavor, color, or texture. But, it should not be harmful for consumption unless it starts to give off bad characteristics such as foul odor or mold growth.

Remember that there are health risks involved with consuming foods that have already gone bad. Hence, always bear in mind to apply food safety practices and consume your foods before it spoils!

Is it still safe to use oyster sauce that has already expired?

Yes. It is relatively safe to use that expired oyster sauce, granting that you have stored it correctly and that there should be zero signs of damages in its packaging. Again, just make sure to always check for signs of spoilage before using it.

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