Does Mustard Go Bad? How Long Does Mustard Last Once Opened?

Does Mustard Go Bad

The straightforward answer to the heading is that the mustard doesn’t get spoiled, but it loses its flavor if you keep it for a long time. Also, it may smell sour if not stored properly.

Mustard is quite a common ingredient that is used in almost every household to enhance the taste of your recipes and regular dishes. It is available from sweet and hot tangy flavors to smooth and sweet honey flavors.

However, if you are not an avid fan of mustard and it is not an everyday condiment of your recipes, then it is the time when you look for storage ways. In the upcoming sections, I have covered various aspects pertaining to the storage of mustard. I hope you will get answers to your every query. Let’s dive in!

How Long Does Mustard Last?

There are certain parameters that decide the life of the mustard. Packaging date, storage conditions, type of mustard sauce, and brand, to name a few.

  • American mustard is a mild type and can easily last for around two years if it crosses the best-by-date when you have not opened it. It is better to keep it in your dry pantry at room temperature.
  • Chinese mustard, if unopened and stored in a pantry, will have a shelf life of one to two years. But if you have opened it, remember to consume it within a year and store it in an airtight container in your fridge.
  • Honey mustard is a blend of mustard and honey. It can sustain for two to three years when stored in your pantry. If you have opened it, you can use it for a year if stored in the fridge.

How long is mustard good for after opening? 

In short, once you open the mustard bottle, it is good to go for one year. You can elongate its shelf life to two years if you keep it in the refrigerator.

How long does Dijon mustard last in the fridge? 

Since Dijon mustard has a high amount of vinegar, it can be kept in the pantry as long as it is unopened.

But if you have an opened bottle of Dijon mustard, it is best to keep it in the fridge. Such a storage process will help the mustard last for up to 1 year.

How do you know if Mustard is bad? 

How to Tell if Mustard has Gone Bad

The basic thing about any kind of mustard is that it is a mixture of various spices and vinegar. Vinegar is an acid-based liquid that helps mu. Howeversustain over the years. However, you may feel that it is losing its flavor over time.

The point of revealing its ingredient is that no matter if it loses its taste still, it will not turn rancid. So, for your convenience, I am going to cite some of the signs to check if the mustard is old or not.


Whenever you feel any difference in smell, it implies that it is quite an old mustard and over time it has lost its smell. Also, if it smells extremely bad or sour, most probably it is high time to toss it out.


Texture or Colour

Another crucial parameter to determine if the mustard has rotten or not is to closely observe its texture. Now, the simple identification in the case of mustard is that it tends to separate or dry out after a significant time.

Here, the good news is, it is completely normal and you can still use it to enhance your recipes and gingerbread. All you have to do is just take out a clean stirrer and simply stir it, and it will come to its usual texture.

Another critical indication about the dry mustard is, closely observing if it has any dry lump. If yes, open the lid of your bin and happily throw it off. Though it doesn’t indicate that the mustard is spoiled or rotten, it certainly signifies that it has miserably lost its moisture, and in a few days, it will completely dry.

What happens if you eat bad Mustard? 

As long as the mustard is not showing any major spoilage signs like a drastic change in taste or texture, it is safe for consumption.

However, if you end up eating bad mustard, you might notice mild symptoms of food poisoning and nausea. While these might subside within a few days, it is best to avoid spoiled mustard in the first place.

How to store Mustard? 

Ways to Keep The Mustard Tasteful

The original or newly bought mustard consists of amazing tangy and spicy flavors. It gives a kick to every recipe it is used in. There are simple yet effective methods to preserve its flavor. Let’s explore.

  1. The best way to preserve its flavor is, to try to finish it before the mentioned best-by-date. Considering that after that date, it is going to lose its original flavor.
  2. The next important thing is to know your consumption. Don’t give big packages, buy as per your consumption only. Don’t fall into the trap of hoarding things because of insecurities that it will finish soon.
  3. Little things play a crucial role. Always take care that you are using a clean and dry utensil to scoop the mustard from its har. Additionally, if you double dip, it may produce food-borne ailments. Also, this practice enhances bacterial multiplication.
  4. When you open a mustard jar, it will retain its texture, flavor, and odor, even if you do not refrigerate it. However, if you refrigerate it, it won’t harm it but rather extend its shelf life and subsequently preserve its flavor.
  5. Another merit of refrigerating your mustard is that it will take time to get dry as compared to the condition when you store it in your kitchen’s pantry.
  6. Note that if the mustard is wine-based or even vinegar-based, it is recommended to refrigerate them after every use. This way your mustard will retain its flavor and aroma.
  7. Next is personal preference, people don’t love cold mustard. Well! In that case, you can increase your consumption and keep it in your dark, cool, and dry pantry storage. Do not refrigerate it even once.

Can you Freeze Mustard? 

While the aforementioned ways can help retain the freshness of mustard for some time, freezing is an advisable option if you want to store it for a long period.

The following is the best method to freeze mustard:

Start by transferring the mustard to the ice tray and place it in the freezer for one day. Remove the mustard cubes the following day and place them in an airtight bag. Ensure that the bag is free from air and moisture. Place it in the freezer again.

Such a method will help you retain the quality and freshness for a long period.

The best thing about freezing mustard is that you do not have to thaw it. You can directly add it to your recipes while cooking and it will give it the necessary taste and texture.

What are the Alternatives to Mustard if it has gone bad?

The following are some of the best mustard alternatives that one can get their hands on:

  • Mayonnaise
  • Wasabi
  • Horseradish
  • Turmeric
  • Dijon Mustard


Does mustard go bad if not refrigerated?

Dijon and horseradish-based mustards are to be refrigerated due to their ingredients. You can place and store other types of mustards in your kitchen pantry.

Can you eat mustard after the expiration date?

Mustard can be used even after it goes past its expiration date. However, it is best to check for any spoilage signs before you put it to use.

Does sealed mustard go bad?

An unopened bottle of mustard will typically last for 2 years. This is only applicable when you store it in a proper way.

How long is opened Dijon mustard good for after the expiration date?

Even though Dijon mustard takes its mighty time in getting spoiled, it can go bad faster in the absence of proper storage techniques. While you can use an opened bottle of Dijon mustard after its expiration date, you must toss it out if you see any changes in the taste, color, or consistency.


If you have carefully read the article, you will definitely get ample ideas in which you can store your mustard by at least maintaining its shelf life. Not only this, this practice will help the mustard retain its original properties.

Further, I would strongly suggest you opt for smaller packing of mustard if you are not a daily consumer. This will never lead to a stage where you have to explore whether it has gone rotten or it is good to use.

It is still a tricky question, and you can be only sure if you are consuming it within the stipulated use-by-date. In this way, you can enjoy its standard taste, odor, and texture without any suspicion. There you go!

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