It isn’t recommended to eat expired butter. However, no one has ever gotten food poisoning or died from eating expired butter that I know of.
Most recipes use such a small amount of butter and this might be why we have never had any cases reported when the butter could have been the cause.
Read on to find out how butter should be stored, how long it can last, and how to know if it has gone bad.
Can you eat expired butter? No, it is not recommended to eat butter that has expired. USDA recommends that you use butter by the expiration date or use by date that is found on the package.
Things to know about expired butter
Although you may not get deathly ill by eating expired butter, it is still not recommended.
Knowing how to tell if it has gone bad or how long it lasts depends a lot on if you have properly stored it and by looking at the date on the package.
Let’s go over how you should store butter, how to tell whether it has gone bad or not, and how long it can last so that you will not consume butter that has expired.
How to store butter
Butter should ideally be stored at 40°F for best results. Stored on a shelf in the fridge and not in the door is also recommended so that the temperature doesn’t vary with the door opening and closing.
Some people store their butter on the counter, this is ok as long as the temperature in your kitchen doesn’t go over 65°F.
You will also want to make sure that your butter is in an air-tight container and out of sunlight.
When you keep butter out on the counter you want to make sure to use it up within a few days.
How to tell if butter is expired
The best way to tell if your butter is expired is to look at the date on the package. It is recommended that you use it before the use by or expiration date.
Some say that it is ok for a week or so after the date if it was stored correctly, but you ultimately need to be the judge.
The most obvious way to tell that your butter is bad is if you see mold growing anywhere on the butter.
You might also open it and smell a rancid or sour smell. Both are indicators or spoiled butter.
If you notice the butter has discolored at all by becoming lighter or darker in color then that is a sign of expired butter.
It is best to discard any butter with any of these characteristics.
How long does butter last
Butter has a pretty long shelf life. If you store your butter correctly then it should last you upwards of 6 months. Most people have no problem using it up before they reach the use-by date.
If you find that you aren’t going to use it all up before it expires then you can store it in the freezer and it will last you about 6 months past the expiration date.