A homemade BBQ sauce is easy to make, with most ingredients available in your kitchen. To save time and effort, a lot of people will most likely be making a large batch for future consumption. With this, you are possibly wondering – how long will homemade BBQ sauce last?
With proper handling and storage, your homemade BBQ sauce can last quite a long time, but how long exactly? This article will answer your question. More importantly, we’ll also share some tips on how you can make it last longer.
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How Long Will Homemade BBQ Sauce Last?
Unfortunately, there is no one best way to answer this question. It depends on several factors, such as the ingredients that you use. The way you handle and store the sauce will also make a huge difference.
On average, a homemade BBQ sauce will last seven to ten days if you store it in the fridge. If you want it to last longer, you can keep it in the freezer for up to one year. Put it in a clean container with a tight lid to prevent external elements from speeding up its spoilage. Use fresh ingredients and make sure that your tools are clean. It is also best to make small batches, so you won’t end up with a waste.
How to Tell if Your BBQ Sauce Has Gone Bad?
Unsure if it is still safe to use the BBQ sauce you made yourself? Pay attention to some signs. The most important is to trust your instinct. If your gut feel tells you that it is already bad, then it probably is.
Nonetheless, there are also some more objective ways of telling when your homemade BBQ sauce has gone bad. The easiest is to look at its color. In most cases, you will find white spots on the sauce, which is indicative of the presence of molds. It can also be lighter than its usual color. Once you notice signs of discoloration, it is best to throw the BBQ sauce.
Another sign to watch out for is the texture. It can become thicker or slimier than the original texture. Such can happen as soon as it spoils.
Smelling the BBQ sauce is another trick to know if it has gone bad. It can become too pungent or too acidic. Trust your nose as you determine if you can still use the sauce or if you must throw it away.
The foul taste is another obvious sign that your BBQ sauce is already bad. Nonetheless, we do not recommend tasting it unless you have already done the things above. No need to worry though if you taste a bit of the sauce to test it. Such will not have a serious health effect.
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Tips and Tricks for Your Homemade BBQ Sauce to Last Longer
If you want your homemade BBQ sauce to last longer, take note of the tips we’ll mention below. However, most of these tips will add only a few days on the shelf life of the sauce, but they are still worth a shot.
Use the Right Container
Clean and dry your container before putting the sauce in it. Otherwise, dirt and moisture can contribute to quick spoilage. If you are using bottles, it is a good practice to sterilize them. Add hot water in the bottle and put it in the microwave. Additionally, the container should have a tight lid, which will keep air out, minimizing the elements that can make the sauce go bad sooner.
Practice Good Hygiene
When you are preparing the BBQ, it is crucial that you practice good hygiene to avoid contamination. Wash your hands and all utensils that you are using. More so, when you are scooping sauce out of the container, use only clean spoon.
To make the BBQ sauce last longer, use the right ingredients. Among others, you will need preservatives to extend the shelf life. One of the most popular is benzoic acid or sodium benzoate. Add it sparingly depending on the instructions from the packet. Adding too much can do more harm than good.
Vinegar is another ingredient that you can add to your homemade BBQ sauce. Aside from its tangy flavor, it is also going to make the sauce more acidic. Plus, it can increase the pH level, which will make it less attractive to the growth of bacteria. If you have a pH meter, you can use it to determine the right amount of vinegar to use in your recipe sauce. Salt and sugar are other self-preserving ingredients that you might want to use in your homemade BBQ sauce.
Store in a Fridge
This is a no-brainer when it comes to the proper storage of homemade BBQ sauces. Leaving it at room temperature will make it last only a few hours. At most, it might be good only for a day or two. By refrigerating, you can maintain the right temperature and extend its shelf life. Even better, you can put it in the freezer.
Freeze the Sauce
If you want the homemade BBQ sauce to last longer than ten days, the best thing to dop is to have it frozen. We suggest putting in in smaller containers, so you can take out only what you will need to use at a time.
If you have the time and equipment, canning your homemade BBQ sauce can also be a good idea. This is an effective way to have a sealed container, making sure that the sauce is free from contamination. Even so, proper storage and handling are still important to prevent the sauce from spoilage. When it is canned, it can last up to one year in the pantry, provided that it has the ideal environment.