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Store-bought miso paste - how long can it be be kept in the fridge ?

LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 04:41 PM

Inspired by the "Does kimchee go bad ?" thread.

I buy a small square tub of it every once awhile:


But the last 1/3 for some reason takes forever to finish up, and after a couple of months I just toss the tub completely, even though it may still be usable. Just wondering if there is an intrinsic expiry date after opening ?

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  1. Tripeler RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 04:50 PM

    It likely depends on the brand, but my guess is about five years. Lots of salt keeps it from going funky.

    1. t
      tastesgoodwhatisit RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 04:53 PM

      A very, very long time. I'd say at least a year, probably longer.

      1. k
        kseiverd RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 04:56 PM

        I was gonna say "forever"!?! Have a nice little Asian market near me. Owners are GREAT! First time there was to shop for soy sauce... musta been 6-8 different brand with little/no English on labels. I just asked which brand should I try first... have NEVER be steered wrong.

        Decided to make miso soup... found ALL ingredients there to make the dashi. Miso paste was the only slightly pricey ingredient. The broth was WAY WAY too fishy for me with the bonito flakes! Have had smallish tub of miso in fridge for past few YEARS!! I use it when just about anything needs a little flavor boost... veggies, rice, sauces, stews.

        1. k
          kcshigekawa RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 05:01 PM

          Mine seems to last forever, too! Before putting it back in the fridge, i flatten the surface, put a piece of plastic wrap in contact with the miso, and cover the container.

          1. LotusRapper RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 05:36 PM

            Cool, thanks everyone !

            Guess I've been tossing them unnecessarily because the surface top became darkened (I removed the piece of wax paper after opening the tub) after awhile and I didn't like the look of it.

            2 Replies
            1. re: LotusRapper
              Ttrockwood RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 08:56 PM

              I know what you mean, i toss mine when the last bits are too hard but the above plastic wrap trick works great.

              1. re: LotusRapper
                KarenDW RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 09:03 PM

                If you transfer the miso from the plastic tub to a jar with a proper lid, you could reduce the degree of drying out.

              2. pikawicca RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 05:43 PM

                I'm in the "pretty much forever" camp.

                1 Reply
                1. re: pikawicca
                  ratgirlagogo RE: pikawicca Feb 9, 2014 04:18 PM

                  Me too. I have two jars of South River miso in the fridge and I don't actually remember how many years ago I bought either of them. Agree with KarenDW that the glass jar may help. But I have never had a problem with staleness or off-tastes, much less mold or anything like that.

                2. r
                  ricepad RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 09:55 PM

                  So far, there is no definitive answer to your question.

                  1. Chemicalkinetics RE: LotusRapper Feb 5, 2014 11:19 PM

                    I would think 2-5 years in the refrigerators.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                      reedux RE: Chemicalkinetics Feb 6, 2014 02:18 AM

                      no qualms for a year at least for me. any dark crusty bits on the surface gets scooped out the rare occasion it happens.

                    2. Chowbird RE: LotusRapper Feb 6, 2014 07:40 AM

                      You'll probably have to buy a new refrigerator before the stuff actually goes bad (as opposed to getting dry).

                      1. tcamp RE: LotusRapper Feb 6, 2014 08:56 AM

                        Yep, I'm in the forever camp too. If you're looking for new ways to use up miso (glaze for fish, salad dressing, etc.), Sally Schneider has lots of interesting ideas. Here is an interview with her on Splendid Table:


                        3 Replies
                        1. re: tcamp
                          LotusRapper RE: tcamp Feb 6, 2014 11:34 AM

                          Thanks Tcamp. Hmm I haven't listened to The Splendid Table in eons.

                          1. re: tcamp
                            tastesgoodwhatisit RE: tcamp Feb 6, 2014 05:02 PM

                            I use miso in a lemon miso dressing (miso, lemon juice and zest, olive oil) for a cherry tomato and onion salad.

                            1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit
                              khh1138 RE: tastesgoodwhatisit Feb 10, 2014 02:15 AM

                              That sounds delicious! I am in the camp of keeping my miso forever and ever (my current tub is ~2 years old) but I'd like to be able to go through it faster, honestly, so I can try different varieties.

                          2. LotusRapper RE: LotusRapper Feb 10, 2014 08:32 AM

                            I can almost see a contest running here: "Who has the most aged miso paste ?" :-)

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