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What is the shelf life of oat milk?

How to know if oat milk has gone off

If you're worried oat milk has gone off, check the below symptoms.

❌ Smell - the first thing you should check for. Off oat milk will usually have an unpleasant smell.

❌ Sour taste - if you notice a sour taste it is best avoided. This is caused by bacteria growth

❌ Lumps - if you see lumps in oat milk then it should be avoided. 

❌ Visual signs of mould - oat milk with visible mould growth should be avoided

What is the shelf life of oat milk?


1️⃣ Fresh oat milk

Typically lasts 7-14 days from manufacturing to when first opened (must be refrigerated during this period).

2️⃣ Long life oat milk (UHT)

Typically lasts 6-12 months from manufacturing to when first opened (doesn't need to be refrigerated during this period).

Once opened

1️⃣ Fresh oat milk 

Most brands recommend consuming within 5-7 days after opening (must be refrigerated during this period).

2️⃣ Long life oat milk (UHT)

While brands suggest a similar timeframe of 5-7 days once opened, UHT oat milk generally lasts longer than non-UHT once opened (must be refrigerated during this period).

The above info is only for guidance, you should check the oat milk packaging for accurate use by dates.

Shelf life of oat milk represented by a reduced carton in a supermarket

    What is UHT?

    UHT stands for ultra high temperature processing and involves heating oat milk to kill bacteria, allowing it to be stored at room temperature for extended periods

    This process has been used for many years in the dairy and alternative milk industry.

    Is UHT oat milk bad?

    While UHT oat milk is safe for consumption, there are a few considerations to keep in mind:

    ❌ Nutrient loss: Some nutrients may be lost by the UHT process, although the impact is typically fairly minimal.

    ❌ Additives: UHT oat milk may contain more additives compared to non-UHT varieties as it is optimised for shelf life.

    Additives very between products so check the label to be sure. Check out our guide on common additives in oat milk for more info.

    ❌ Taste and Texture: The UHT process can slightly alter the taste and mouthfeel of oat milk, which may not be preferable for some consumers.

    How to know if oat milk is UHT?

    • Labelling - UHT oat milk is typically labelled as "long life" or "UHT", this may be written on the front or back of the packaging.
    • Supermarket aisle - UHT oat milk is typically found on ambient aisles, whereas fresh oat milk is found on refrigerated aisles. 

    Throwing away too much oat milk?

    If you find yourself discarding unused oat milk frequently, consider trying oat milk powder.

    Dried oat milk has a naturally long shelf life without the need for UHT or preservatives! Plus you only make exactly what you need, when you need it, so it's zero waste.

    Tips for storing oat milk

    1️⃣ Temperature: Always store oat milk in the fridge when not in use. For optimum storage, your fridge should be between 3 to 4 degrees C.

    2️⃣ Sealed packaging: Ensure the lid is tightly sealed to prevent contamination and preserve freshness.

    3️⃣ Avoid strong odors: Store oat milk away from strong-smelling foods to prevent absorption of unwanted flavors.


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