How Long Can You Really Keep Salsa In The Fridge?

Ask any lawyer a simple question and you'll generally get the same answer — "it depends." The same goes for how long a particular salsa is good for, even with continual refrigeration. There are several factors that will affect the life of that cilantro-spice-tomato-vinegar-and-whatever-else-you-threw-in concoction sitting on a shelf in your fridge after you didn't quite finish it.

People have been pondering whether the salsa has gone bad before they started calling it by that name, according to Salsa Shack, which states that the Aztecs combined chiles with tomatoes perhaps as long ago as 3000 BC. That was long before human society developed refrigerators, which among the mistakes everyone makes with refrigerators, can be assumed the salsa remains good in perpetuity as long as you keep it chilled. Turning onions and tomatoes into salsa won't magically make them live forever.

There are some ways to prolong the life of your favorite salsa recipe, though, and your fridge is an important tool in doing so.

The clock is ticking on your homemade salsa

You don't necessarily need to bust open a bag of tortilla chips immediately. In fact, depending on the circumstances, you might actually be able to wait for the next Taco Tuesday.

PepperScale explains the life of your salsa depends on its storage method and whether you made it yourself. For homemade salsa, like this Spicy Salsa Roja Recipe, PepperScale says you should have between four and six days before you need to throw it out. That assumes, however, that you've had it in an airtight container while it's been stored in the fridge.

For store-bought salsas, Does It Go Bad recommends you abide by the "best by date" on the product labels. That only pertains if you haven't opened the container, though. As soon as you crack that seal, your time shortens to around a couple of weeks for salsa in a jar or about a week for refrigerated products.

Beezzly offers some tips to squeeze all the life out of salsa. These include keeping it in a cold, dark place and always scooping it out using a clean spoon. Beezzly also explains that you know your salsa has gone bad once it turns darker in appearance or emits an unpleasant odor. The best way to avoid it going bad is to eat it while it's fresh, which also happens to be the tastiest spoilage prevention method as well.