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Dec 5, 2012 01:41 PM

How long will homemade vinaigrette stay good for?

I was wondering what the average expiration would be on a homemade vinaigrette dressing. Any insight would be great!

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  1. What are the ingredients? Does it contain garlic and/or shallots/fresh herbs?

    7 Replies
      1. re: chefathome

        So, if the vinaigrette contains garlic and/or shallots/fresh herbs, the shelf life in the refrigerator will be reduced, is that the idea?

        And how about a dressing made of fresh lemon, olive oil and salt & pepper. Should that have a similar refrigerated life of several days?

        1. re: uwsgrazer

          yes -- contamination via the microorganisms on the garlic/shallots/herbs. Anaerobic bacteria are particularly nasty in your body -- and oil provides an excellent environment for their growth.

          Fresh lemon, oo, and s&p would be less likely to be carrying any microorganisms, so it should last several days with no problems.

          1. re: sunshine842

            That probably explains why jarred chopped garlic in oil makes me sick, as does a lot of restaurant food with garlic. My sister, a former waitress, says a lot of people can't handle jarred restaurant garlic.

            1. re: thymeoz


              Not liking it, or having it upset your stomach, is a whole separate thing from having it be contaminated. Not every restaurant uses jarred garlic, so if every restaurant dish containing garlic bothers you, it's the garlic itself.

              Commercially-prepared chopped garlic is heat-processed to kill the microorganisms.

              the illnesses caused by contaminated garlic can put you in the hospital, not just cause you to have an upset stomach.

              1. re: sunshine842

                Not every restaurant dish upsets my stomach, but I see your point. So there's something about garlic that bothers some people... or is it just individual digestive differences?

                1. re: thymeoz

                  Yes, some people are actually allergic to garlic, others just get heartburn/upset stomach/heartburn after eating it....others may not be able to eat onions, or chiles, or beans. Some can eat a little with no issues and have no problems, others can't touch the stuff, others can plow through a plateful and never so much as belch.

                  And yes, it varies wildly from person to person and from dish to dish.

      2. a couple of days, if you didn't use egg yolk or cream in it -- ETA: In the refrigerator.

        That's the beauty of homemade vinaigrette -- you don't have to make more than you need!

        3 Replies
        1. re: sunshine842

          I usually take your approach. I make just what I think I'll need.
          if I have extra I'll usually put it in a tiny recycled jar. save for tomorrow or use by next day with something else not originally intended. I marinate meat or veg in it then roast.

          1. re: sunshine842

            Why would a mix of oil and vinegar (both of which lasts indefinitely unrefrigerated) only last two days in the fridge?

            1. re: joonjoon

              because the olive oil congeals in the fridge and just gets unpleasant.

              Making it in the bowl takes maybe 5 minutes and doesn't dirty a jar or take up space in the fridge.

          2. My mother has a vat that she keeps topping up that sits on her countertop. She augments it with kalamata olive brine, shallots and balsalmic vinegar. It has been there and used for at least a decade; nobody has died yet. Nevertheless, I do not recommend this approach.

            3 Replies
            1. re: relizabeth

              is it **vinegar**, or is it **vinaigrette**, which has oil in it?

              10-year-old vinegar isn't a big deal -- 10-year-old vinaigrette might be.

              1. re: sunshine842

                oh it is vinaigrette! It has oil in it.

                1. re: relizabeth

                  erg. The oil can become rancid and cause serious health issues.

            2. I keep mine in the fridge for a week, sometimes longer. It does contain garlic and it is fully emulsified with a stick blender. Whenever it separates I give it a quick shake.

              1. I make a squeezebottle of homemade vinaigrette that usually lasts me four to six weeks in the fridge. As of today, it has not killed me.