The Optimal Way To Store Oyster Sauce Once It's Opened

Standing in your kitchen, you stare at an open oyster sauce bottle with triumph and contemplation. Recalling having grabbed this bottle of oyster sauce off a shelf in an aisle at your local Asian supermarket, unchilled at room temperature, a question lingers in your head: What is the optimal way to store a bottle of oyster sauce once it's opened?

First, let's step back for a minute and consider the best way to store unopened oyster sauce to maintain its freshness and flavor. When still sealed, this sauce thrives in a cool room-temperature environment shielded from direct sunlight (as light exposure and heat can lead to flavor degradation over time). This is similar to a shelf of a supermarket aisle or at home in your pantry, away from the heater and heat-emitting appliances like the rice cooker, instant pot, or stove. 

But once you open that bottle of oyster sauce, say adieu to the pantry, as the optimal way to store opened oyster sauce is in your refrigerator.

Keep your oyster sauce fresh and flavorful in the fridge

To maximize its shelf life and maintain its umami-laden flavor, promptly transfer the opened bottle to your refrigerator. Before placing it, please take a moment to wipe any residual sauce to keep it clean and prevent the lid from getting stuck or jammed. Then, ensure the lid is sealed and air-tight. Tightly sealing an opened oyster sauce bottle is vital as it prevents air exposure, which can cause flavor deterioration and create an environment for bacteria to thrive.

If your oyster sauce comes in a shelf-stable can, transfer it to a plastic or glass storage container after opening, and then refrigerate. If the sauce was originally in a glass bottle, keep it stored in there as glass helps maintain the sauce's integrity. Once you follow these storage guidelines, expect this condiment to last up to two years — but considering its versatility and irresistible taste, who knows if it will last that long?