Does peanut oil go bad? is a question often asked by people who use this oil is for baking, cooking and frying to give food a nutty crunchy flavor. Fortunately enough, the shelf life of peanut oil is similar to other oil, which means they last quite a long time. Let’s discuss storing peanut oil, its shelf life and how to tell if it has expired or gone rancid. Read on!
Shelf life and storage of peanut oil
Peanut oil purchases in its original packaging and left unopened can stay fresh for up to 3 years in the pantry safely. If the oil is open, it is wise to store it in the refrigerator to keep it fresh for up to 3 years as well. However, an open container or jar of peanut oil stored in the pantry or on top of the counter will last for a shorter period – about 2 years. That depends on the quality of the peanut oil itself. If this fat is combined with other oils, it will typically last the longest, but pure peanut oil left open is best in terms of quality if you use it up before the expiration date on the bottle it comes in.
Image used under Creative Commons from ratna rajaiah
How long does peanut oil stay good for in frying appliances?
Whenever you are using peanut oil to cook food in fryolators it is wise to only use the only three to four times because it tends to take on the flavors of the foods you cook in it and loses its quality quickly after coming in contact with foods and being heated repeatedly. For example, you fill your fryolator with a gallon or two of peanut oil and the first night you heat it up and use it for cooking up a batch of onion rings in it. That counts as one use. The next night you fry chicken wings in the same oil you fried the onion rings in and that counts as two uses. After that you fry donuts for snacking on in the same oil again, making it the third time you have used the oil for frying purposes. Then, you use the same oil a forth time for frying corn fritters. After the fourth time you should replace all the oil and start fresh to prevent getting a rancid tasting oil.
Please note that you should never fry food with a batch of peanut oil , wait a month in between and use that same oil in the frying appliance for frying more food later on. By the time you get to use the peanut oil again for frying it would have turned rancid.
Therefore, if you are going to use peanut oil for frying it is best to plan out a week where you are just going to make fried foods as a treat, or only purpose the amount of peanut oil required for frying up what you need to for a one time use. Otherwise, there is no sense of purchasing a large jug of it to get one use out of it and leave the rest sitting about for long period of time giving it the chance to go rancid. Peanut oil is expensive and you don’t want to waste money on buying large amounts you will never use up before the best by date on the bottle or jug.
When should peanut oil be thrown out?
Peanut oil should be thrown out when it become darker in color and has a rancid scent to it that smells anything other than peanuts. It should also be tossed out if there are food particles left in the oil for long amounts of time such as the peanut oil in your frying appliances or large pots you use for frying foods. Food particles left in peanut oil used for frying purposes can cause it to spoil quickly.
Otherwise as mention peanut oil can last up to 3 years unopened safely in the pantry with no spoiling, but again it is always best to use the oil up before it expires and purchase it in small amounts if you do not plan on using it often.