How long does Alfredo sauce last?

Here’s everything you need to know about homemade and store-bought alfredo sauce. Learn how long it lasts, how to store it, and how to tell if it’s bad.

Have you just opened a jar of alfredo and wonder how long you have until it goes bad? How long does alfredo sauce last?

the short answer

Unopened store-bought Alfredo will usually last at least a few weeks after the printed date. Once you open it, it keeps for only 3-4 days in the fridge. Homemade alfredo lasts 3 to 4 days refrigerated.

That is the gist of it.

This is what we discuss in this article:

  • details on the shelf life of alfredo sauce, both store-bought and homemade
  • dealing with “expired” alfredo sauce
  • when to throw the sauce
  • storage practices

Do you want to know more? keep reading

Pasta and chicken topped with alfredo
Pasta and chicken topped with homemade alfredo

How long does Alfredo sauce last?

Pantry Fridge
Store-bought alfredo sauce, unopened Better before + 3-4 weeks
Store-bought alfredo sauce, opened 3 – 4 days
homemade alfredo sauce 3 – 4 days

An unopened store-bought alfredo sauce keeps well beyond its printed date, but it only lasts 3-4 days in the fridge once you open it. Homemade Alfredo requires refrigeration and also keeps for 3 to 4 days.

With those periods in mind, let’s get into some details.

store bought alfredo

While commercial alfredo does keep for a long time and (usually) does not require refrigeration, it will keep for only a couple of days after opening.

Various producers have slightly different recommendations. For example, Prego recommends using their sauce within 3 days of opening, while Classico gives you a little longer with their 5-day storage recommendation. But these are always similar to the usual ones. advice 3 to 4 days of storage for leftovers.

Now, what if your alfredo is expired?

Pasta, chicken and alfredo
Pasta, chicken and alfredo

How long is alfredo sauce good for after the expiration date?

While vendors always recommend using your alfredo before the printed date, the sauce should keep for at least a couple of weeks after your date, assuming you store it in a cool, dry place and the seal is intact.

Of course, there’s no way of knowing exactly how long it will last. It may be weeks, but it is more likely months. Because of that, I generally recommend going with your gut.

If you look at the printed date and immediately think the bottle is too old to eat, throw it away. But if you agree with what you see, open it up and see what’s inside. The sauce will most likely be fine, even if it’s been a couple of months since the printed date.


Always check an expired alfredo well before using it.

Homemade Alfredo Sauce

Homemade Alfredo lasts 3-4 days in the fridge in an airtight container. That’s true for both the sauce alone and any dish you’ve used Alfredo in.

If you’re thinking of making a larger serving, such as doubling your recipe, freezing the Alfredo is worth considering.

Related: How long does the pesto last?

Homemade alfredo sauce preparation
Homemade alfredo sauce preparation

How do you know if Alfredo sauce is bad?

Discard your alfredo sauce when:

  • There is mold or other visual changes. Whenever you notice signs of mold, throw it all away. Pulling out the moldy part and using the rest is not an option. The same is true for any other visual changes, such as discolorations.
  • Smells “funny” or off. That’s pretty self explanatory.
  • It has a bad taste. If the sauce looks and smells good, check the flavor as well. Usually it will be perfectly fine, but if it isn’t, throw it away.
  • It is open for more than 4 days. Your alfredo might still be fine on the 5th, but you never know. Better safe than sorry.
  • It is unopened and past the printed date. As I explained above, if you are no longer comfortable with the “expiration” of the sauce, whether it be weeks or months, throw it away. If you are looking for details, I would not recommend opening alfredo that is more than 3 months past its date.

All of the above signs of spoilage and reasons to rule out Alfredo are fairly general in nature, and you can use them when evaluating other pasta sauces, such as marinara.

Alfredo and extra parmesan
Alfredo and extra parmesan

How to Store Alfredo

Store-bought alfredo sauce should sit in a cool, dry place until you open it. Once opened, seal the jar tightly and refrigerate. As for the homemade alfredo, let it cool, transfer to an airtight container, and place in the fridge.

Other than that, you should be aware of basic storage practices that apply to all sauces, such as:

  • scoop out with a clean spoon
  • seal it tight
  • make sure he doesn’t sit on the counter for longer than necessary
  • let leftovers cool before transferring to the fridge or freezer
close up of alfredo
close up of alfredo

How long can Alfredo sauce sit?

Perishable foods, such as alfredo sauce, should be refrigerated within 2 hours of opening or cooking. This is also known as the 2 hour rule.

So if you’ve just cooked yours, you should let it sit until it’s cool enough to refrigerate, but make sure it doesn’t take more than 2 hours.

(Which shouldn’t be a problem unless you’ve cooked a gigantic amount.)

The same applies to leftovers. That means leftover fettuccine alfredo or chicken alfredo should sit comfortably in an airtight container (or pot with a lid, covered bowl, or whatever) in the fridge within two hours of cooking.

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