News & Opinion > Ask the Chef >

How Long Can I Store Olive Oil?

Ask the Chef

Question:

I have an odd question, but I am sure others have come up against this situation. I have moved my home office into my elderly father’s (83-years-old) home since his Parkinson’s has gotten worse. I’ve been in his pantry and have come across a bottle of Olive Oil, Ann Page, so that should give you an idea of the age. The date is l978. It has never been opened and is pure virgin olive oil and is clear, no discoloration. My question is, would this be usable? There is also a bottle of Kikkoman’s Teriyaki sauce; due to the darkness I can’t tell if this would be OK. There are numerous things that are questionable and need to be tossed, but I was wondering in particular about the olive oil. Can you help?

—Claudia

Answer:

Olive oil stores longer than other oils but two years is considered the outside figure. While it may not be rancid, the oil will have lost its flavor and use would probably lead to disappointing results. Our recommendation is that you not use either product. Click here for a good source for additional information.

See also our Ask the Chef question about olive oil flavors, Why Does My Olive Oil Taste Peppery to learn how to choose one that is right for you.

Also, see How Long Can I Store Corn Oil?.