Does Rice Vinegar Go Bad?

Rice vinegar is a flavour and condiment made from fermented rice. This vinegar is widely used in Asian cuisine, particularly in Chinese, Vietnamese, Japanese, and Korean dishes. Rice vinegar is well-known for its mild, delicate, and somewhat sweetish flavor. It’s used in things like sauces, dips, marinades, and pickling. But can rice vinegar spoil?

If, for example, you purchased numerous bottles of rice vinegar, you should know that the product will last a long time. Like other vinegar-based goods, rice vinegar has a self-preserving quality and will keep for a very long period.

Although some people believe rice vinegar never goes bad, this is not true. However, rice vinegar has a lengthy shelf life, so you can use up all of your stock.

Even though you already know that vinegar does not go bad in general, it makes sense to learn more about this specific variety. Continue reading to learn about rice vinegar storage, shelf life, and going bad.

What Is Rice Vinegar, And Why Is It So Important?

Vinegar is a term that should be recognizable to anybody who enjoys cooking, skincare, or other sorts of do-it-yourself projects.

“Sour wine” is the original French term for it, and if you’ve tasted it, you can attest to its tangy character.

Food that includes sugar is fermented into alcohol and then fermented further into vinegar to produce this condiment.

According to scientific theory, acetic acid makes up between 5 and 20 percent of the entire volume of vinegar.

When carbohydrates are fermented, and ethanol is oxidized, an acid called acetic acid is formed. This acid is produced by a bacterium called acetobacter.

There are several vinegar variations, including red and white wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar, and rice vinegar.

As its name indicates, rice vinegar is a byproduct of fermenting rice water in a controlled environment.

It is a spice that may be found in various dishes, from ribs on the grill to salad dressing to sushi.

So, Does Rice Vinegar Go Bad?

It will take some time for rice vinegar to become worthless due to the acidity inhibiting bacterial and mold development.

However, there is no question that the shelf life of rice vinegar is limited, so yes, rice vinegar will go bad after a while.

When rice vinegar is stored for a lengthy period of time, peroxides, which are damaging chemicals, occur. Consuming spoiled rice vinegar may cause sickness.

How Long Will Rice Vinegar Keep?

Rice vinegar, like other kinds of vinegar, does not have a specific shelf life. People are more likely to believe foods that has a best-by date on the label, so many manufacturers include one. When it comes to the condiment’s shelf life, that date is just an approximate estimate.

Even though rice vinegar (also referred to as rice wine vinegar) is less acidic and slightly sweet compared to other kinds, it should still be able to keep for many years beyond that date.

In comparison to the other varieties, rice vinegar does not hold up as well since it is less acidic. You may detect some variations in flavor after a period of storage of five years. You should put it in the refrigerator if you plan to keep it for more than five years. Alternatively, you might save money by purchasing a smaller bottle.

How To Determine Whether Rice Vinegar Is Bad

First and foremost, while purchasing vinegar, pay attention to the color. Rice vinegar is available in a variety of hues and flavors. Rice vinegar comes in various colors, from clear to dark brown and red.

Color changes are a symptom of degradation; therefore, if you don’t know what the color is, you won’t realize it’s changed. If the vinegar’s color changes, this might indicate that part of its flavor has been lost.

As with other vinegars, rice vinegar is unlikely to spoil in such a way that it becomes dangerous to consume.

It’s best to throw out anything with a strange hue or a bad odor. If the vinegar doesn’t taste the same as it used to, you better dispose of it. Make sure it’s fresh before using it if it’s been sitting around for some time.

Even if you find vinegar with the mother repulsive, it can still be used. The mother is found in the bottom and looks like hazy or slimy sediment. Even if your rice vinegar has been filtered, it will develop over time. You can filter the vinegar using coffee filters, and it will be ok for consumption.

How To Keep Rice Vinegar?

Rice vinegar can be stored in the pantry, at room temperature, for both opened and unopened bottles. Keep the product out of direct sunlight and other sources of heat.

The vinegar will deteriorate significantly more quickly when exposed to direct sunshine and heat. The flavor of rice vinegar diminishes over time, so it is best to use it while fresh to get the most out of it.

Because rice vinegar has an expiration date, you can keep it in the fridge. To extend the product’s shelf life, store it in its original container.

Is Rice Vinegar Safe To Freeze?

It is possible to freeze rice vinegar, but however, it is not necessary. Once defrosted, the vinegar’s flavor may be diminished.

When vinegar is frozen and thawed, the vinegar’s acidity will be reduced. Be careful to use a freezer-safe container if you’re going to freeze the vinegar. When it’s below zero, glass bottles full of liquid sometimes break!


There are so many ways to utilize rice vinegar in the kitchen! Sauces, marinades, dressing, and dips all benefit from adding a little vinegar.

The question is whether or not rice vinegar can go bad. This product has a long shelf life; therefore, it may go bad after a while.

You don’t need to worry about rice vinegar’s shelf life.

Related: Mirin vs. Rice Vinegar – What’s the Difference?

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