Vegan Butter Expiration: A Comprehensive Guide

Vegan Butter Expiration: A Comprehensive Guide

Vegan butter is a delicate food that needs proper storage to stay creamy and tasty.

But how long will your precious butter last before it goes bad? And do you know how to store it properly?

The good news is that vegan butter has a longer shelf life than regular butter. That doesn’t mean it will last forever, though.

However, there are a few essential things to keep in mind regarding vegan butter shelf life.

How Long is Vegan Butter Good For?

When it comes to food, its ingredients are the ones that determine how long it can stay good.

It is the same with vegan butter.

The most common ingredients in plant-based butter are oils, a thickener, and water. If kept in a cold, dry place, they have a shelf life of at least six months. The shelf life may be increased if preservatives or flavors are added.

Depending on the manufacturing process, »best before« date, and storage conditions, vegan butter might last up to a month after the expiration date indicated on the packaging.

Even homemade vegan butter can last up to two weeks in the refrigerator.

StorageGood for
Room temperature (below 70°F)few days
Refrigiratorfew weeks to six months
Freezersix months or more
Table: How long is vegan butter good for?

Since we are discussing vegan butter, there are a few scenarios that I want to mention when it comes to its lifespan in certain conditions.

Here’s the first one.

How Long Does Vegan Butter Last Open?

Vegan butter is excellent for at least two weeks once it is opened. We kept it in the fridge for over a month since we opened it, and it’s been great.

If it smells unpleasant or is discolored, trash it. It also depends on the vegan butter brand you purchase.

But generally, vegan butter can be kept in the refrigerator between a few weeks and six months. In the freezer it can be kept for six to nine months when kept correctly at or below 40°F.

If you are wondering how to tell if vegan butter is bad: It will taste rancid or sour.

How Long Does Melt Vegan Butter Last?

We often need to melt the butter, but we only spend some. So how long does this melted vegan butter last?

Melt vegan butter based on oils can be stored in the refrigerator for a few weeks up to six months. After that, melted butter can be frozen to increase shelf life without lowering product quality.

If your vegan butter is nut-based, it might have a shorter lifespan once it is melted. In this case, it might be good for a month when refrigerated properly.

There is one thing to consider when you want to use it again. For the best results, it is advised to thaw butter sticks or spread in the refrigerator before using them.

Always remember safety first when you work with food, and throw it out if your vegan butter tastes rancid.

Does Vegan Butter Have to Be Refrigerated?

Plant-based butters, like those made with avocado or coconut oil, are not required to be refrigerated. But suppose your room temperature is above 70°F. In that case, you should refrigerate your vegan butter, regardless of its ingredient.

Plant-based kinds of butter don’t go rancid quickly like dairy butter does when left out at room temperature. They also last much longer. Nevertheless, they can still go sour with time, so keep them in the fridge for a longer shelf life.

How Long Does Vegan Butter Last in the Fridge?

Any vegan butter can be stored in the fridge for a few weeks up to six months and remain good.

How Long Can Vegan Butter Be Left Out?

Vegan butter can be left at room temperature (below 70°F) for a few days and remain good.

How Do You Store Vegan Butter?

Be sure to put the butter in a lidded container so it can be easily covered.

I store mine in mason jars that are small or shallow.

Is Vegan Butter Safe at Room Temperature?

There is much discussion about whether or not vegan butter should be left out at room temperature. The fact is that some vegan kinds of butter can be left out for up to two weeks if your room temperature is below 70°F. Depending on its ingredients, it might melt or become rancid or sour at higher temperatures.

I was brought up believing that leaving butter at room temperature would inevitably cause it to spoil. Yet, there is more leeway than one might think.

It is true that vegan butter usually contains at least 80 % fat and has a far lower water content than dairy products. This results in a product that is significantly less likely to be affected by the growth of bacteria.

Vegan butter at room temperature is more likely to grow rancid. Still, if you avoid these four mistakes, they will happen slower than you may expect.

  • Leaving out the incorrect type of vegan butter

It is ok to leave unsalted butter out at room temperature for a few hours before using it in baking. However, if you are going to keep it at room temperature for an extended period, you should salt it. The reason for this is that salted butter provides additional defense against bacterial growth.

  • Storing vegan butter in the wrong type of container

When storing butter at room temperature, it’s crucial to have a container that will prevent it from being exposed to light and air, the two leading causes of rancidity or spoilage.

It should be included in its original wax paper wrapper or on a plastic-wrapped plate. Instead, choose an airtight container that keeps light out.

You also have the option of purchasing a butter bell, which is a butter keeper, or a butter crock. These containers keep butter in a little pot submerged in water, which forms an airtight seal. A dish or plate can also retain the butter at a consistent temperature and make it soft and spreadable.

  • Keeping it in a warm kitchen

If you live in a hot region or if it is a hot summer, it may be too warm in your kitchen to leave any type of vegan butter on the counter. However, if your kitchen temperature is consistently above 70°F, you should refrigerate your butter.

  • Keeping out too much at once

Only leave out what you think you can consume in a brief time.

Can You Use Vegan Butter After the Expiration Date?

Do you ever wonder what happens when you eat butter that’s been lying in your refrigerator for months?

The »best before« dates for vegan butter are typically printed on the packages. However, butter can be safe after the »best before« date. We have done it many times. Having butter block in the freezer and consuming it even after the expiry date has always worked for us.

You might be surprised to learn that butter can still be safely consumed up to a week after its expiration date if it is kept at room temperature.

Can you eat expired butter?

Well, if you consume spoiled vegan butter, there may be unpleasant side effects.

These can consist of diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea. In rare cases, a bacterial infection is also possible.

Although most people who consume expired butter will recover without any issues, it’s good to be mindful of the risks. If you have severe symptoms after expired butter, you should seek medical help immediately.

How Long Does Vegan Butter Last After the Expiration Date?

Vegan butter can be safely stored and consumed for up to a month over its expiration date, but only if you store it properly.

Here’s how to store vegan butter correctly:

  • Vegan butter must be kept in a clean airtight container to prevent it from turning rancid.
  • Vegan butter should be kept in temperatures lower than 40°F to extend its shelf life.
  • It can last more than six months if stored in the freezer.
  • It can also be good for a month after expiration if kept in the refrigerator.
  • To prevent temperature changes, use the interior shelves of the refrigerator rather than the ones on the door.

If the flavor or odor of the plant-based butter is off, it has gone bad, and it’s best to be safe and throw it out.


Regarding vegan butter, one general rule to keep in mind: The cooler the temperature, the longer the shelf life.

Vegan butter can last long if stored properly, but there are differences among plant-based butter producers. In addition, the main ingredient that butter is based on determines how long the butter is good for. In case your butter tastes weird in any way, like sour or rancid, it has probably gone bad.

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Gregory Knox
Gregory Knox

A certified nutritionist, father, and animal lover combines 13 years of veganism with his expertise in food and nutrition, offering readers a wealth of knowledge on plant-based diets and cooking.