Olive Oil Shelf Life: How Long Does Olive Oil Last?

Olive oil is produced from olives. Through a scientific process, oil from the olives is separated and is readily available. The shelf life of olive oil depends upon its variety as well as the way it is stored. Therefore, there are no guarantees as to how long olive oil can keep fresh. For this reason, labels and instructions should be carefully reviewed on the products you are buying.

It is necessary to know that the olives are picked during the winter and then the olive oil trade season starts in the next year. Late harvested olive oils can be used for three to four months. The fresh accumulated olive oils can be used for about one year. It’s better to use olive oil within six months. Furthermore, an unopened container of olive oil can last about two years easily.

How to Purchase Olive Oil

Following tips will help you to buy a good quality olive oil.

  • Exposure to air and heat causes the olive oil to go rancid. Always try to buy olive oil in dark cans or bottles.
  • Choose extra virgin olive oil as it is a pure form of olive oil.
  • Read the labels, especially the “best by” date as it will provide a timeline for freshness.  
  • The color of olive oils vary from one another. If you are buying a transparent bottle, try to avoid dark colored oils or oils with particles floating around.

Storage of Olive Oil

Olive oil can be fragile and it’s essential to take good care of it. Over time, olive oil loses its beneficial properties. It is not best to store it for an extended period of time. Heat, air, and light are all detrimental to olive oil. The best way to store olive oil is to place it in a dark and cool area of your home immediately after purchasing.

Temperature plays a crucial role. Do not store the olive oil near the stove or oven. It can be stored in the refrigerator; however, this can make it cloudy. To avoid any solidification of the olive oil, keep olive oil in a cool and dark place. Try to put some olive oil in a sealed container at room temperature and any remaining amounts in the refrigerator.

To avoid any negative effects from the exposure to light and air, transparent bottles can be covered with aluminum foil and always seal containers tightly after use. By taking these extra precautions, all of the healthy nutrients of the olive oil are better protected.


Many people avoid cooking with olive oil because it contains unsaturated fatty acids. On the other hand, olive oil has a lot of other nutrients and is considered healthy as well. Deep frying with olive oil isn’t good for your health, but pouring on a small amount on salads is quite tasty and a healthy option.