Canola oil is made from the canola plant, which is a type of rapeseed. Canola oil is a popular choice for cooking because it has a neutral flavor and is low in saturated fat.
Oils go bad when they lose their ability to give the right nutrients and texture to the foods that use these oils.
Can canola oil go bad? Yes, canola oil can go bad. It can spoil or become rancid. Rancidity is a result of the oils breaking down and releasing unpleasant flavors. Canola oil has a shelf life of about one year. However, canola oil can last longer than that if it is stored properly.
In this blog post, we will discuss the shelf life of canola oil and how to prevent it from going bad.
Causes of Canola Oil Going Bad
Oils deteriorate over time and become rancid. You won’t get sick by eating rancid oil, but it will have an odd flavor that will ruin dishes. Some of the beneficial characteristics of rancid oil, such as the antioxidants found in it, maybe lost.
Oils get rancid as a result of a chemical reaction that breaks down the fat molecules in the oil. Exposure to air, light, and heat speeds up the entire process. The process is accelerated because the chemical structure of some oils makes them more prone to breakdown.
Some common causes to why canola oil may go bad are;
- Canola oil can go bad because of oxidation, light exposure, or heat exposure. Oxidation is a chemical reaction that happens when the oil is exposed to oxygen. This causes the oil to become rancid.
- Light and heat exposure can cause canola oil to spoil. They cause molecules in the oil to break down and release unpleasant flavors.
- Canola oil can also go bad if it is not stored properly. Canola oil should be stored in a cool, dark place.
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Canola Oil Shelf Life
Canola oil can go bad, and the most common scenario is that it becomes rancid after being stored for a long time. It can take anywhere from a year to more than two years for it to go rancid, depending on when you open it and how it’s stored.
The rancidification process is what causes fat-based goods to slowly degrade in quality and get rancid. Canola oil functions in the same way.
Regrettably, this implies that it is difficult to determine the precise shelf life of canola oil. Of course, the container has best-by dates, but these are merely estimations, and the oil frequently lasts much longer than the written date.
As a result, you must understand how to determine if canola is rancid or deteriorated in any other manner.
Shelf-Life of Unopened Canola Oil
Generally, canola oil can last for up to two years if unopened and stored in ideal conditions.
Storing canola oil in a cool, dark place is crucial to maintaining its freshness. When canola oil is exposed to light or heat, it can cause the oil to go rancid faster.
You can store canola oil in the pantry, cupboard, or cabinet. The best place to store canola oil is in the fridge. Canola oil can last up to a year if unopened and stored in the fridge.
Shelf-Life of Opened Canola Oil
Once canola oil has been opened, it should be used within six-twelve months. Canola oil can last longer if it is stored properly.
After opening the canola oil, it comes in contact with air and light, which reduces its shelf-life from that of an unopened one.
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Storing Canola Oil
Canola oil should be stored in a cool, dark area away from light and heat. It is recommended to keep the oil away from the stove because the heat from the stove will make the oil bad faster.
It is better to store it in a cabinet or pantry that is in a cool, dark, and dry area.
Canola oil can last up to two years if unopened and stored properly. Once canola oil has been opened, it can last up to one year if stored properly.
Canola oil can be stored in the fridge, which can help it last up to a year. But it is not recommended to refrigerate or freeze canola oil. Low temperatures may cause crystallization when refrigerated but that doesn’t make it unsuitable to consume.
It’s not a good idea to freeze canola oil because it won’t keep for more than a year. Furthermore, freezing the oil changes its structure, causing it to grow rancid much more quickly once it thaws.
The best way to store canola oil is to keep it in an airtight or properly sealed container in the pantry where there is less light, sunlight, and heat. This way, the oil will last quite a long time before refrigeration.
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Identifying if Canola Oil Has Gone Bad
There are a few ways to tell if canola oil has gone bad.
- If canola oil has been stored for too long, it can develop a rancid smell. This is an indication that the oil has gone bad and should be thrown out.
- Another way to tell if canola oil has gone bad is by its color. Canola oil is usually a yellow or light golden color. If the canola oil has dark spots or has turned dark, it is an indication that it has gone bad.
- Canola oil can also go bad if it has a bitter taste. This is another indication that the oil has gone rancid and should be thrown out.
- If there is any sign of mold on the lid of the container, without taking risk it is better to discard the oil.
Can Canola Oil Be Consumed After Expiry Date?
The ‘best by’ date on the container is usually an estimate. Canola oil may be consumed long after the expiration date on the container has passed. However, it is critical to note that the oil was properly stored.
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Tips to Prevent Canola Oil from Going Bad
- While shopping, look for canola oil that is housed in a dark glass bottle or a canister. Both of these storage solutions drastically minimize light exposure.
- If your canola oil container is made of clear glass or plastic, keep it away from light and heat.
- When you’ve opened the bottle for the first time, remember to close it tightly when it’s not in use.
- Make sure the canola oil lid is on tight and store it in a cool, dark place.
- Avoid using canola oil that has been sitting in the pantry for more than two years, even if it’s unopened.
- After canola oil has been open for a while, smell it before you use it. If the oil has a rancid odor, it’s time to throw it out.
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Now that you know that canola oil goes bad, pay attention to the storage methods and the expiration date. By doing so, you can extend the shelf-life of your canola oil and make sure it is still good to consume.
If you have canola oil that has gone bad, make sure to discard it properly. And, if you’re ever in doubt, err on the side of caution and throw it out. It’s better to be safe than sorry!