Does Buttermilk Go Bad?

Like almost all other foods, buttermilk also goes bad after a certain time. How long buttermilk will last depends mostly on the way of its storage. If you want to use only a small amount of buttermilk you may be wondering what to do with the rest of the product.

In this article you will get some useful information about buttermilk and its shelf life. Also, you will learn how to store buttermilk properly and how to extend its shelf life, but first you will read some basic things about buttermilk. We hope this article will be interesting for you.

More about Buttermilk

Buttermilk is a dairy product that is produced from cow’s milk. It has a sour taste, which is caused by lactic acid bacteria. Buttermilk is also thicker than plain milk. You can simply drink buttermilk, but you can also use it in cooking. Below you will see something more about the shelf life of buttermilk.

What Is the Shelf Life of Buttermilk?

The shelf life of buttermilk depends on many factors, but the most important factor is the way of its storage. Approximately, buttermilk can last about two weeks if it is stored in the fridge. Sometimes it can be fine for a longer period of time. If buttermilk is unopened and if it is stored in the fridge its shelf life is about a month. If buttermilk is opened, it can last for up to two weeks, but it is better to drink it earlier.

If you have opened buttermilk two weeks ago and if it is still good to use, you should use it for baking purposes only. It is recommended to avoid drinking buttermilk that approaches the two weeks mark. If buttermilk is frozen it will last for a longer period of time. If you provide proper storage conditions your buttermilk can last a couple of months in the freezer, but it is best to use it within three months from the freezing date. This way buttermilk will have the best quality.

How to Store Buttermilk Properly?

If buttermilk is not stored properly, it will last for a shorter period of time. Like all other dairy products, buttermilk should also be stored in the fridge, regardless of whether it is opened or not. If you want to store buttermilk in a long run, you should freeze it. This way you will extend the shelf life of buttermilk. When you freeze buttermilk you should place the milk in an airtight container or in portion-sized parts, if you will use it on a regular basis. That way you will be able to take from the freezer only the amount of buttermilk that you need. It is also recommended to leave some empty space on the top of the container.

One more thing that you should know is that the consistency and the taste of buttermilk after thawing won’t be the same as before. Buttermilk will certainly change in texture and flavor, so you should use it only in cooked dishes. If you want to drink buttermilk, it is recommended to use the fresh one.

How To Tell If Buttermilk Has Gone Bad?

It is not easy to determine if buttermilk has gone bad or it is still good to use. Its smell and taste probably won’t change that much. You should know that buttermilk is an acidic substance, but when it is spoiled, it may become moldy. It is possible that mold appears inside of the carton or around the lip. If you notice any signs of mold in your milk you should discard it immediately.

Also, it is important to check the consistency of buttermilk. Normally, buttermilk is very thick, so you should stir the content with a spoon or shake the container. If buttermilk is a little thicker, but if it smells good then it is probably safe to consume. When buttermilk is spoiled, it will turn pretty solid. If you notice that buttermilk has changed in consistency, you should throw it out.

Another sign of the spoilage of buttermilk is its sour smell. If you see that your buttermilk has changed in smell, you should not consume it. If you are not sure whether your buttermilk is spoiled or it is still fine, you should taste it. If buttermilk tastes sour, you should discard it.

If you are still in doubt, throw out your buttermilk. This way you will avoid many health risks that are related to spoiled foods. You should know that consuming spoiled buttermilk can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and other symptoms of food poisoning.


As you have seen in this article, buttermilk can go bad. Its shelf life will be longer if you store it properly. We have showed you how to store your buttermilk. As you should know by now, it is necessary to store buttermilk in the fridge.

In order to extend its shelf life, you should keep it in the freezer, but after thawing buttermilk should be used only for baking purposes. It may be difficult to determine if your buttermilk has spoiled. If you notice any signs of mold or if your buttermilk has changed in consistency, smell and taste, you should discard it. If you are not sure whether your buttermilk has gone bad or not, it is always best to throw it out. Remember that consuming spoiled foods can lead to many health problems.