The thing that I hate the most about store-bought pesto, and also other refrigerated foods for the matter, is the size of the container.

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More regularly than no a single container is an ext than I need for a single recipe. That pipeline me through a half-open jar sitting in the fridge that I have to remember come use.

And at a certain point, the dreaded question comes up: does pesto walk bad?

If you’d favor to learn an ext about the shelf life, storage, and going bad of pesto, this post is because that you. In it, us cover both the store-bought and also the homemade variety. That means we’ve acquired you covered if you prefer to make this sauce yourself.

Fresh pesto

How To keep Pesto

There space two type of pesto easily accessible on the market. The an initial one is sold unrefrigerated, while the second one sits in the refrigerated section of the store. The same thing walk for other sauces, prefer salsa.

Let’s start with the former. Unrefrigerated pesto normally comes in jars or tins. Since it sit at room temperature at the store, you have the right to store in room temperature too, as lengthy as it’s unopened.

Make sure it’s in a cool and dry area, far from sunlight and also heat sources. Part sunlight and temperature alters won’t do it go negative in the container, but the high quality after opening might not be the great.

Once you open the container, make sure it’s always sealed tightly and also sits in the fridge as soon as not in use. If the pesto come in a tin, pour it into a sealable container before refrigerating.

The 2nd variety of advertising pesto is the one that’s sold refrigerated. Storing that is not rocket science: the moment you gain home through it, you put it right into the fridge and also keep it there.

Once you open up the container, save it always sealed tightly. If the original container isn’t sealable, to water the pesto right into a small food container.

When it involves homemade pesto, girlfriend should always keep that in the fridge and also sealed tightly. If you intend to keep it in the refrigerator because that a few days, add some olive oil ~ above top prior to chucking it into the refrigerator. The will assist it retain high quality for a little bit longer.

Pesto in one airtight container

Can You frozen Pesto?

If girlfriend would prefer to extend pesto’s shelf life, you can freeze it.

Please note that freeze pesto might an outcome in a slight adjust of structure after thawing. The high quality of this sauce after defrosting relies on the ingredients offered to do the pesto and when it to be frozen.

Also, please remember the in some dishes the changed texture will blend in well, when it others it will be noticeable.

In short, you should do some testing to figure out if your pesto freezes well and how it works in her favorite dishes.

When it comes to how to freeze pesto, try freezing that in ice cream cube trays. This way you can easily thaw as much of the sauce as you need.

How long can you keep pesto in the freezer, girlfriend ask? Buitoni recommends for 30 days only, however obviously, pesto in the freezer won’t spoil. Its quality will degrade over time, though, for this reason the sooner you use it, the better.

Making pesto mortar and pestle

How long Does Pesto Last

Once again, let’s start with the shelf life the commercially packaged pesto sold unrefrigerated.

It usually comes with a best-by day on the label. The sauce, as lengthy as you leave it unopened, can quickly last a couple of weeks or maybe also months after that date. Of course, it won’t last in an excellent quality as long as hot sauce, however it’s not prefer it will certainly go bad a job or two after the date on the label.

Once you open up the jug or tin, you deserve to keep the sauce for about 7 to 10 days.

When it pertains to the store-bought pesto marketed in the refrigerated area, in most situations it has a use-by date on the label. The unopened sauce should retain an excellent quality for possibly up come 5 to 7 days previous that date. Sometimes it keeps fresh because that longer, however that’s no a given.

Once you open the container, you should finish it in ~ 5 come 7 days. The unrefrigerated pesto contains much more preservatives that the refrigerated variety, so it also lasts for a shorter period after opened the bottle.

Homemade pesto lasts for 4 come 5 days in the fridge. Self-made pesto generally doesn’t contain any kind of preservatives, for this reason nothing is staying clear of it from going bad, hence the short period.

Of course, it would be appropriate if you would certainly take a mortar and a pestle and whip up fresh pesto for every dish. However as we all know, it’s an unrealistic scenario.


If girlfriend would favor to prepare a enlarge batch, check out the freeze instructions earlier.

Pesto (sold unrefrigerated, unopened)Best-by + 1 – 3 months
Pesto (sold unrefrigerated, opened)7 come 10 days
Pesto (sold refrigerated, unopened)Use-by + 5 – 7 days
Pesto (sold refrigerated, opened)5 – 7 days
Pesto (homemade)4 – 5 days

Please note that the periods above are turbulent estimates.

Fresh spaghetti v pesto and also chicken

How come Tell If Pesto Is Bad

There room a few things come look the end for once it concerns spoiled pesto.

Of course, there are the normal suspects, choose mold or any type of other organic growth. Look because that them ~ above both the surface ar of the sauce and the inside of the container.

The second classic sign of spoilage is an off or rotten smell. If the sauce doesn’t smell fresh prefer it usually does, it’s past its prime, and also you have to discard it.

Next in line space the basil leaves. If they’ve changed color from environment-friendly to brownish, it’s a great indicator that the pesto should be discarded.

Olive oil separated (and fairly dense) in pesto – common in homemade pesto after a couple of hours the storage
If everything about the sauce seems okay, it have to be fine. Offer a little amount a taste and decided based upon that if it’s an excellent enough to use. If not, discard it.

Last yet not least, please remember that pesto spoils quickly. If you’re questioning if it’s it s okay to eat, the usually way it’s not. Trust your senses and throw the sauce the end if that’s the case.

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Same point if it sits in the refrigerator for an extensive period, prefer over a week for homemade pesto. Even if whatever seems to it is in okay through it, it’s much better to continue to be on the for sure side and discard it. The an initial signs of it going negative are challenging to spot, therefore assuming it’s currently off is the right an option here.