Do You Need to Refrigerate Hot Sauce?

Martin SmazenkoHot Sauces1 Comment


It doesn’t really matter with a cheap bottle of Tabasco or Frank’s Hot Sauce, but when you go the extra mile and splurge for a quality bottle of craft hot sauce, you don’t want to ruin it. After spending the extra money, you start to ask the important questions like do you need to refrigerate hot sauce? Then you find you really don’t know the answer.

Do You Need to Refrigerate Hot Sauce?

The answer is actually more complicated that you think. Many hot sauces will answer it on the label, but other hot sauces only need to be refrigerated in certain circumstances.


When to Refrigerate Hot Sauce

Do you take forever to finish off a bottle of hot sauce? Then you best refrigerate it. This slows down the oxidation process and allows you to preserve that precious color and flavor for much longer.

Is your hot sauce homemade? Homemade hot sauces always need to be refrigerated. Well, at least unless you are well versed in both food safety and preservation, which you probably are not.

Sauces that need Refrigeration:

  • Chutney-based hot sauces
  • Tomato-based hot sauces
  • Chile oil sauces
  • Sauces with low vinegar content

How Long Does Hot Sauce Last?

If you buy a brand of hot sauce that does need to be refrigerated, how long will it actually last in there? Well, you will need to really nurse a bottle of hot sauce if you want to risk it going bad. Unopened bottles store in the pantry will take about five years to go bad and that date remains the same for opened bottles in the fridge. However, that is not to say that your hot sauce will maintain the same consistency. In the refrigerator the hot sauce may get thicker and even a little crusty due to evaporation.

One Comment on ““Do You Need to Refrigerate Hot Sauce?”

  1. Millie

    I make my own hot sauce on the stove with canned tomato sauce. Fried garlic with olive oil and water and red hot chili flakes. I like to leave out on the table. Is that ok? However only lasts a week or so before it is all gone 🤗

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