Worried that your sesame oil has gone bad?
Well, don’t sweat it. Today’s article is short and sweet – and that’s a reflection on the simplicity of storing sesame oil and telling if it’s gone bad.
Want the super-short summary?
Sesame oil should be stored in a cool, dry, dark place before it’s opened. After you’ve opened the bottle, keep it in the refrigerator for the longest storage life (a whole year!). If you’re worried your sesame oil has gone bad, give it a smell and a taste – any bitterness and that means your sesame oil has gone rancid.
The Signs That Sesame Oil Has Gone Bad
First thing’s first. Your sesame oil probably won’t go bad, as in moldy bad.
Instead, your sesame oil will go rancid after a while. Rancidity is a term used to describe food that’s changed in odor and has a bitter taste. These effects are caused by oils and fats oxidizing, reacting with the oxygen in the air.
Whilst rancidification isn’t unsafe, you won’t want to use rancid oil as it will ruin your whole dish!
It’s pretty easy to tell if your oil has gone rancid. First up, smell it. Any weird odors and it’s time for the bin. If you don’t smell anything, feel free to taste a little. If it’s rancid, you’ll know about it!
Storage Recommendations For Sesame Oil
Once you know how to store one vegetable oil, you know how to store them all.
Just like every other vegetable oil, you should store your sesame oil in the pantry or kitchen cupboard. Just make sure it’s away from light and heat sources.
Once you’ve opened your sesame oil, reseal it tightly. If you’re planning to use it within 6 months, you’re fine to chuck it back in the cabinet.
Any longer than 6 months, and you should store your sesame oil in the refrigerator.
Now: it’s not a good idea to freeze your sesame oil. It will become thick and unusable, and you’ll have to warm it up first.
Storage Periods For Sesame Oil
Your sesame oil will come with a best by date. To benefit from that delicious nutty flavor, you should use it by this date.
However, unopened sesame oil, provided it’s been stored in decent conditions, as specified above, should last 1 year after the expiration date.
Once your sesame oil has been open, you should use it within 6 months if stored in the pantry and 1 year if stored in the refrigerator.
Of course, there’s some common sense to be used here. If you’ve just opened a bottle of sesame oil that’s a year past its expiration date, don’t expect it to last another year in the refrigerator.
Sesame Oil: The Key Takeaways
Here are the key points to note when it comes to sesame oil storage:
- Store sesame oil like any other vegetable oil. Before opened, it should go in the pantry. Afterward, you can choose between the pantry or the refrigerator – the latter if you want your oil to last longer!
- Check for signs of rancidity to tell if your sesame oil has gone bad.
- Unopened sesame oil should be okay a year after its best by date.