How Long Can Almond Milk Sit Out Once Opened?

So you’ve opened a carton of almond milk, poured yourself a glass, and now you’re wondering how long can almond milk sit out.

The short answer is not very long, unfortunately. Almond milk is perishable due to its lack of preservatives. As a result, try and drink it within 7 to 10 days of opening.

But once it’s opened and exposed to air, it will spoil quickly if left unrefrigerated. Here are some tips to keep in mind to avoid wasting that pricey almond milk and keep your fridge smelling fresh.

Importance of proper handling and storage

Proper handling and storage of almond milk are crucial for food safety and quality maintenance. Following good practices can prevent foodborne illnesses.

Which can protect you from harmful bacteria. Wash your hands before handling almond milk. Ensure you always use clean utensils and avoid cross-contamination with other foods.

Storage is equally essential. Refrigerate almond milk promptly after opening. Try and keep it below 40°F (4°C). Refrigeration slows bacterial growth and maintains freshness.

Leaving it at room temperature for too long promotes bacterial growth and spoilage.

Proper storage also preserves flavor, texture, and nutrition. Exposure to light, heat, and air can degrade quality. Store almond milk in a cool, dark place and seal it tightly after each use.

How Long Can Almond Milk Sit Out at Room Temperature?

How long can it sit before spoiling once you open a carton of almond milk?

These are guidelines you should keep in mind.

At room temperature (around 70°F), an open carton of almond milk will typically last 3 to 5 days. As with dairy or non-dairy milk, bacteria grow rapidly at warm temperatures. It’s best to keep almond milk refrigerated once opened.

Before drinking, check for spoilage signs like curdling, unpleasant odors, mold, or a sour taste. If you notice any of these, discard the almond milk immediately. It’s not worth risking foodborne illness.

For the best quality, use opened almond milk within seven days. It will help it last up to a week when properly refrigerated. But the flavor and texture can start to deteriorate over time. But for fresh taste, use it as soon as possible.

If possible, choose almond milk with minimal ingredients and avoid added sugars. The fewer ingredients, the less chance of spoilage. Unsweetened varieties also tend to last longer.

Don’t leave almond milk at room temperature for over 2 hours. This includes during meals or when serving over cereal, oatmeal, or coffee. Bacteria grow quickly between 40 to 140°F, so refrigerate promptly after serving.

By following these tips, you can enjoy delicious almond milk safely for up to a week after opening. But when in doubt, it is safer to chuck it out! Your health and safety should come before wasting a few dollars of almond milk.

Refrigerating Opened Almond Milk: How Long Does It Last?

So you’ve opened that carton of almond milk, so how long can it sit out?

Once opened, almond milk will typically last 3 to 5 days in the refrigerator before spoiling.

Here are some tips to keep in mind:

Always refrigerate opened almond milk immediately. Leaving it out at room temperature allows bacteria to grow, spoiling the milk.

Check the ‘use by’ date before opening. Don’t open it if it’s already past the date. While unopened cartons can last longer, it’s best not to chance it.

Look for changes in appearance, smell, and texture. Spoiled almond milk will develop an unpleasant, sour odor and become lumpy. At times it gets thicker in consistency and possibly changes color. If you notice any of these signs, discard the milk.

Consider using shelf-stable almond milk if you don’t drink it often. Aseptic cartons don’t require refrigeration and can last 6-12 months unopened. Therefore, you waste less if you only use a little at a time.

Do a sniff test when in doubt. Your nose is very adept at detecting spoiled milk. If it smells off or is unpleasant in any way, it’s best to discard it. It’s not worth risking foodborne illness.

Almond milk tends to last longer than dairy milk once opened. But still, remember, it is perishable. For the best quality and food safety, drink opened almond milk within four days. If it shows any signs of spoilage or is past the date, toss it.

Signs That Almond Milk Has Gone Bad

Sour smell

If your almond milk develops a sour smell, it’s a sure sign it has gone bad. Trust your nose on this one. Once it goes sour, it’s unsafe to drink.

Almond milk contains live active cultures that can spoil over time, even when refrigerated.

Change in color or texture

Fresh almond milk should be creamy white. If it starts to become yellow, brown or shows signs of curdling, it’s time to toss it. The texture will also become lumpy, thick, or grainy as it spoils.

Mold spots

Another noticeable sign that almond milk has spoiled is the presence of mold.

Usually in the form of spots, film, or fuzz on the surface of the milk. Or it could be along the sides of the carton. Mold is a clear indicator of spoilage, and the milk should be discarded immediately.

And while at it, ensure to clean your refrigerator. This will help avoid cross-contamination with other foods you might have.

Past the ‘use by date

As a rule of thumb, unopened almond milk will last up to a week after the ‘use by’ date.

While opened, almond milk should be consumed within 7 to 10 days. The ‘use by’ date is a good guideline, but the signs are usually quite clear when spoiled.


That covers how long almond milk lasts once opened and how to spot if it’s gone bad.

The key is not to leave it sitting out too long after opening. Always refrigerate almond milk promptly after using it.

Additionally, be alert for changes in smell, color, or texture.

If in doubt, it’s best to discard it. Foodborne illness is no joke.

While almond milk does have a decent shelf life compared to dairy milk, it’s still a perishable product. Thus, that needs to be handled properly. 

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