Does Vodka Go Bad?

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When you reflect on food storage, you may think of products like milk and cheese, but the assortment is significantly broader than that.

Vodka is one of those foods that people often forget about.

And with good reason, because it doesn’t seem to have any special storage requirements.

But this is actually false, as we’ll explain below.

How long does vodka last?

There are two main ways in which you can preserve your vodka—either by freezing it or by keeping it at room temperature.

The first method, freezing, is fairly straightforward.

It requires very little maintenance once the process has begun.

You simply need to put the bottles into some type of freezer (an ice chest will do) until the liquid inside is frozen solid.

You should keep the bottle upright to prevent condensation from forming on its surface, and you should also make sure that the bottle isn’t touching anything else when it’s being stored.

Some types of plastic may melt in contact with each other, so be careful.

Once the vodka has been frozen, you can take it out of the freezer and return it to regular use.

However, if you want to ensure that the vodka stays cold for longer periods of time, you should label the bottle and place it back in the freezer.

This way, you won’t accidentally leave the bottle in a warm spot.

The second option for preserving vodka is by keeping it at room temperature.

Again, the process is simple, but it does require a bit more effort on your part.

To begin, you’ll need to remove the cap from the bottle.

Then, you’ll need to pour the vodka into another container.

This container should have a tight-fitting lid to prevent the air from escaping while the vodka is standing around at room temperature.

The vodka should then be stored somewhere cool and dark, such as a cabinet or closet.

If you’re worried about the taste of the alcohol leaving the bottle, you can always add a few drops of food coloring before pouring.

This will help mask the taste.


What happens when you leave vodka outside?

This method is particularly useful if you plan to leave your vodka outside for extended periods of time.

If you live somewhere with hot weather, you may want to consider putting the bottle inside a cooler to protect it from direct sunlight.

However, if you live in a colder climate, you’ll probably want to let the vodka stand outside.

This allows the flavors to develop naturally over time, and it gives the alcohol a chance to absorb whatever impurities happen to be floating around nearby.

Does vodka go bad if it’s not refrigerated?

There are two main factors in determining how long something will last: temperature and exposure to air.

In the case of vodka, both of these factors are relatively easy to control.

Vodka is made from fermented grains, so it’s already been pasteurized by the process of fermentation.

It also has no significant oxygen content, which means that it won’t be exposed to air for very long, even if it isn’t kept cold at all times.

The only thing that would cause problems for your vodka is temperature.

If it gets too warm, alcohol evaporates and it becomes ruined.

So, unless you’ve got a bottle full of vodka in the fridge that you need to use in the next couple days, you don’t need to worry about keeping it cool.

If you want to make sure that the vodka lasts longer than just a few days, though, there are some other ways to extend its shelf life.

Vodka wine

What are the signs that vodka has gone bad?

As we mentioned above, there are no special guidelines or recommendations on how to store vodka.

So, in other words, you don’t need to worry about whether or not your bottle of vodka is going to go bad.

If it’s still in its original packaging, then you can keep it indefinitely.

But what happens when someone gives you a used bottle of vodka for Christmas?

This is where things get tricky, as the following list of signs will show you.

  • Pancakes come out flat
  • Pickles start to smell weird
  • The bottle starts to leak
  • You see white crystals growing at the bottom of the bottle
  • There is mold growing in the bottle

These are all clear signs that your bottle of vodka is starting to go bad.

Once you notice these changes happening, you should probably throw away your bottle of vodka immediately.

There’s no point in waiting around until it’s too late.

How can you tell if vodka has gone bad?

If you’re looking for a quick-and-easy way to test whether or not your vodka has gone bad, then your best bet is to check the color.

In general, clear alcohol is safe to drink.

There are some exceptions, though, including white wine, whiskey, and even beer.

If you notice anything off about the color, don’t drink it!

It could contain bacteria, mold, or other harmful substances.

The biggest concern when it comes to storing vodka is oxidation, which happens when oxygen interacts with alcohol molecules in your beverage.

This causes them to break down into smaller components called acetaldehyde, acetic acid, and ethyl acetate.

When these compounds reach high enough levels, they start to smell sour and taste bitter.

But how can you be sure?

1. How long can you store vodka?

There’s no specific limit on how much time you can keep vodka before it goes bad.

In fact, the longer you can keep it around, the better.

Most experts say you should keep it refrigerated at all times, so that it doesn’t get exposed to air.

That said, there’s also nothing wrong with keeping it out at room temperature, especially if you plan on using it right away.

This is something that depends heavily on the type of vodka you choose.

Some vodkas will remain perfectly fine at room temperature for quite some time, while others won’t last nearly as long.

For example, Bacardi 151 Rum will only stay fresh for a few months at most, whereas Smirnoff Ice Vodka will keep its flavor for up to two years.

So, how long is “a few months”?

According to some studies, you should keep it around six months at room temperature, and just a couple of weeks in the fridge.

2. What kind of vodka lasts the longest?

One thing that helps to determine the shelf life of your liquor is the type of distiller used.

Many different types of grain exist, each with their own unique properties.

So, it makes sense that the type of vodka would affect how long it can stay around.

For instance, most European vodkas are made from rye grains, as opposed to corn, wheat, or barley.

Rye contains higher amounts of antioxidants and vitamin E, which helps to slow down the rate of oxidation.

As a result, rye-based vodkas tend to last longer than other kinds.

Another factor is the type of spirit used.

The process of fermentation involves yeast being added to sugar.

Different yeasts react differently to different sugars, which affects the quality of the final product.

Even within the same type of vodka, each batch is likely to vary slightly.

To get around this, many distillers purchase their ingredients from multiple suppliers, and blend their products together to create a consistent flavor profile.

This allows them to ensure that the finished product tastes similar every time.

3. How can you tell if vodka has gone bad?

You might wonder why you need to worry about vodka going bad, since it’s already been distilled, and therefore purified.

After all, it’s not exactly the same as the original ingredient.

However, it’s important to remember that most vodkas have a little bit of water added back in.

This isn’t always necessary, but it typically adds a subtle sweetness to the finished product.

As a result, you should never consume raw vodka.

Instead, you should be drinking it diluted with either water or another type of liquor.

Water is best, as it will allow you to enjoy the flavor of the vodka without having to add extra flavors yourself.

Once you’ve finished your drink, you should put it in the refrigerator immediately.

Not only will it prevent it from getting contaminated, but it will also help to preserve the flavor of the vodka.

Is it safe to drink vodka that has gone bad?

The short answer is yes.

Vodka will keep well in the fridge, and if you’re drinking it after 12 months, there’s no risk at all.

However, if you buy some cheap vodka (or even better, used it) and consume it before then, you could end up with a nasty hangover.

This is because vodka contains ethyl alcohol, which is broken down by yeast into carbon dioxide and ethanol.

In a perfect world, these two chemicals should be removed from your blood within 24 hours, but if you’ve had too much to drink, this process can be slowed or stopped entirely.

If you drink something that has been sitting around for longer than that, there’s a chance that the ethanol will start to break down the other components in the bottle.

This includes the sugar, colorants, and flavorings.

If it’s been stored for over a year, then it will almost certainly be poisonous.

In fact, the FDA recommends that if you find out that a bottle of vodka is past its best-before date, you throw it away immediately.

That said, you don’t need to worry about using old vodka. You just need to make sure that it’s not moldy.

What happens if you drink bad vodka?

Before we get into how long vodka lasts, let’s talk about what happens when you buy something off the shelf that has been sitting in your fridge for 10 years without being opened or used.

The problem here isn’t that your vodka will expire.

It’s that it will become contaminated by bacteria, which can cause illness and even death.

This is why it’s important to keep all foods clean, including your vodka.

If you’re drinking vodka for the first time, you should be very wary of whether or not it’s safe to consume.

There are plenty of places where you can find cheap booze, but unless you know it was made using high-quality ingredients, you don’t want anything to do with it.

This includes all types of spirits, including vodka.

It’s also important to make sure that your vodka hasn’t been diluted with other drinks.

If you’ve ever seen someone pour their vodka on top of soda water, they’re probably not doing it correctly.

Soda water is meant to be mixed with a little bit of ice before you drink it, so the only way to dilute it is to add too much alcohol.

This is why it’s best to buy your own bottle of vodka.

You can then ensure that you’re getting pure vodka from a manufacturer who cares about quality.

How do you store vodka to keep it fresh?

As far as I know, no one has ever kept vodka in the fridge.

It’s considered too acidic and alcohol-based, so it goes straight into the freezer or the pantry.

But what about pickles?

They’re pretty much vinegar-based, right?

So they should be fine in the refrigerator, right? Not exactly.

Pickling vegetables is a process that involves submerging them in a brine solution (often made up of water, salt, and spices).

As the vegetables are submerged, they begin to ferment, which causes their cells to break down and release natural enzymes that help preserve them.

This process means that pickles will eventually start to lose some of their crunchiness, texture, and flavor.

This is why most pickle recipes recommend that you eat your pickles within two weeks after making them.

That said, pickles don’t necessarily need to be refrigerated, either.

A quick trip through the pantry or the fridge will likely do the trick just fine.

What is the best way to drink vodka?

If you’re going to be drinking vodka all the time, then you should know how to properly store it.

This isn’t just so you don’t waste your liquor, but also because it will keep it tasting better over time.

When it comes to storing alcohol, there are two main ways to approach it.

One is by keeping it in the fridge or freezer, which is what most people assume when they hear “store vodka.”

These methods work well, but they only extend shelf life from a couple weeks to a few months depending on the type of vodka.

The other option is to use a vacuum sealer, which creates an airtight container that keeps the product fresh for up to a year.

Vacuum sealing is ideal if you want to preserve quality rather than quantity.

In addition to these options, you can also choose to use some sort of preservative.

For instance, if you want to store vodka for longer than a year, you could try adding a little bit of potassium sorbate (also known as potassium metabisulfite).

But let’s talk about how long each of these methods lasts first.

How can you make vodka last longer?

As much as we would all love to take advantage of the fact that vodka doesn’t spoil in the fridge, unfortunately, it has some very specific storage requirements.


The ideal temperature to keep your vodka cool is between 50 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit (10 and 15 degrees Celsius).

This is also known as “room temperature” or “ambient temperature.”

To bring the temperature down, pour the vodka into a container and let it sit in the fridge overnight.

Then, the next day, transfer the vodka from the container to another bottle.

Repeat this process until the vodka reaches room temperature.

If you don’t want to use your fridge to store your alcohol, you can always place the bottles in the freezer overnight.

However, this method will only work on a small scale.

You can also try placing the vodka in the freezer for a few hours, then transferring it to a cooler bag or other container to prevent condensation.

This will help maintain the correct temperature. Just remember to check the temperature regularly, while keeping the container away from direct sunlight.


As mentioned above, light is a major factor in how quickly your vodka spoils.

If you plan on storing your bottle outside, it’s best to avoid exposing it to direct sunlight.

However, you should also avoid using dark containers.

Because the UV rays in sunlight cause the alcohol to break down faster, you should keep your vodka in clear glass bottles or plastic jugs instead.

If you are planning on leaving your vodka out during the summer months, you can cover the bottle with aluminum foil.

Alternatively, you can wrap the bottle in paper towels and tape them together to provide additional protection.


A common myth is that vodka goes bad simply because it sits around without being consumed.

While this isn’t true, it’s still important to keep your liquor properly sealed when you are storing it.

This is especially important if you plan on storing your vodka outdoors.

To ensure it stays fresh, you’ll need to buy a proper sealable container.

It’s also a good idea to purchase a vacuum-seal bag to keep the air out.

If you’re going to be storing your vodka in the freezer, it’s a good idea to pack the jar tightly so that no air gets trapped inside.

In addition, you’ll need to remove any labels before sealing the container.

What are some tips for drinking vodka?

The first thing you need to know is that vodka is basically just distilled water.

That means that it will always be safe to drink if it’s properly stored.

However, it should be noted that vodka isn’t a particularly strong spirit, so if you overdo it, you could end up with a hangover.

If you want to keep your vodka fresh, you’re going to need to make sure that you clean it regularly and store it in a cool place.

We covered how to clean your liquor cabinet earlier on in this article, which includes information on how to clean your bottles and other containers too.

The Vodka Soda

The Vodka Soda

Try this Vodka Soda recipe: a tangy, bubbly drink! It’s light and refreshing, with slightly less calories than the typical cocktail.
Prep Time 2 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Calories 131 kcal


  • 2 ounces (¼ cup) vodka
  • ½ ounce( 1 tablespoon) lime juice
  • 4 ounces ( ½ cup) soda water
  • Ice for serving (try clear ice)


  • Place the vodka and lime juice in a highball or lowball glass and add ice.
  • Top off with soda water and enjoy.



Calories: 131kcalCarbohydrates: 0.04gSodium: 24mgPotassium: 3mgSugar: 0.01gVitamin A: 0.3IUVitamin C: 0.1mgCalcium: 6mgIron: 0.02mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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