Shelf Life of
Alcohol

How Long Does Liquor Last?

How Long Does Alcohol Last?

How Long Does Alcohol Last?

How long does alcohol last? A better question might be does liquor go bad? Alcohol is made by fermenting the sugars from a variety of foods including (but not limited to) grain, barley, potatoes, beets, sugar cane, and molasses. Alcohol can be used to accompany your meal, as an ingredient in your meal, or by a skilled chef to set your meal on fire! The shelf life of alcohol depends somewhat on factors such as the sell by date, the preparation method and how the alcohol was stored. Because of the relative certainty of side effects, alcohol is one of the most used (and abused!) beverages in the world.

So, the answer to does liquor go bad, when you are talking about hard liquor (or pure alcohol), is … not really, but still be careful! How long does liquor last? When properly stored, the shelf life of pure alcohol is approximately …

(Opened/Unopened) Pantry
Vodka lasts for Indefinite
Tequila lasts for Indefinite
Rum lasts for Indefinite
Gin lasts for Indefinite
Whiskey lasts for Indefinite
Brandy lasts for Indefinite




Of course, alcohol lasts for a shorter period of time if it is not stored properly. In addition, drinks that have a low percentage of alcohol will decline in quality over time because of the other ingredients in the bottle – the above dates are for pure alcohol. But remember, liquor, like a lot of other drinks, does not have a sell by date or a use by date so you must rely on your senses.

How to tell if alcohol is bad, rotten or spoiled?

Although not a perfect test, your senses are usually the most reliable instruments to tell if your alcohol has gone bad. Some common traits of bad alcohol are discoloration and a foul smell.
Properly stored pure hard liquor that has not been opened should not go bad and remain forever.
There are, of course, certain health risks associated with any spoiled product, so always remember to practice food safety and proper hygiene to help prevent illness.

How to store alcohol to extend its shelf life?

Proper storage is the key to extending the expiration date of liquor.
You can help alcohol stay fresh longer by storing it in cool, dry and dark place away heat.
You can also place your alcohol in a refrigerator or freezer (a home freezer isn’t cold enough to freeze hard liquor). But, like any product should remain constant and not exposed to many temperature changes.
Some benefits of proper food storage include eating healthier, cutting food costs and helping the environment by avoiding waste.

How long is alcohol good for when prepared in a dish?

How long does alcohol last? That depends. How long does orange juice last? In general, alcohol will be the longest lasting ingredient in any recipe but save other ingredients from spoiling at some point. To find out how long those other ingredients are good for, please visit the Dairy, Drinks, Fruits, Grains, Proteins, Vegetables and Other sections of Eat By Date or search below!

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What are our shelf life resources?

Our content incorporates research from multiple resources, including the United States Department of Agriculture and the United States Food & Drug Administration. In addition, we scoured the web for informative articles and reports related to food safety, food storage and the shelf life of liquor.

*An important note about expiration dates …

Although the liquor shelf life information on Eat By Date is generally reliable, please remember that individual cases will vary and that our advice should only be taken as an opinion or guidance tool and not replace your health care provider. Please drink responsibly!