Does beer become stale?

Asked By: Nadeem Vergaz | Last Updated: 10th February, 2020
Category: food and drink non alcoholic beverages
4.7/5 (61 Views . 24 Votes)
Any beer that's been laying around too long, regardless of whether it was pasteurized, reaches a point when it goes stale (becomes oxidized). Refrigerated beer is far less likely to become oxidized, but it can still happen over time.

Click to see full answer


In respect to this, how long does it take for beer to go stale?

Beer typically lasts for six to nine months past the expiration date on its label. If the beer is refrigerated, it can last up to two years beyond the expiration date. It all depends on what your tolerance for those nasty flavors that come with bad beer is.

One may also ask, what can I do with old stale beer? Use these four beer hacks around your house this summer to get the most out of every single drop:

  1. Remove stains. Next time you spill coffee on the rug during a groggy Monday morning, reach for some stale beer leftover from your Sunday Funday.
  2. Restore wood.
  3. Add shine to hair.
  4. Ward off bugs.

Hereof, can you get sick from drinking old beer?

Drinking beer past the expiration date is not ideal, but in the event that you drink a “rotten beer”, just know that drinking a bad beer probably won't make you sick and it won't kill you. At the most, you can expect a bit of a stomach ache and a slight feeling of disappointment and disgust.

Can you drink out of date beer 2 years?

Typically, beer stored on a store shelf or in your basement (not refrigerated) is drinkable 6–9 months after the printed expiration date. Beer stored upright in a cool, dry space or in a fridge could be find to drink up to two years after the date. The skunky taste is also a sign of beer gone bad.

36 Related Question Answers Found

How do you tell if a beer is skunked?

If your beer smells like skunk
Pick up any beer sold in clear, green, or blue glass bottles, open it, and take a sip. It's that easy! This is because beer has three mortal enemies: oxygen, heat, and light.

Can you drink 5 year old beer?

The simple answer is yes, the beer is still good insofar as it is safe to drink. Since most beer is either pasteurized or filtered to eliminate bacteria, it's extremely resistant to spoiling. How the beer will taste is another matter.

Is it OK to drink stale beer?

The beer will not be bad in the sense of unsafe to drink, since no harmful pathogens grow once the beer is fully fermented. So you can certainly drink the beer. However, the beer may not taste good! The oxygen causes the beer to stale, producing tones of sherry, paper, cardboard.

Is it OK to drink flat beer?

Beer doesn't become unsafe to drink as it matures, but it will begin to taste flat — either because it loses flavor or develops an off-putting flavor profile. The alcohol content of beer (and wine, for that matter) is determined during the fermentation process and will not change over time.

What does bad beer taste like?


Smell the beer and if it smells like vinegar, dump it. If it smells fine, taste it. If it tastes normal, run with it. One conclusion you may wish to appreciate - if excess carbonation can build up in beer, treat corked beer like champagne and point it well away from anybody when open.

How do I know if my beer is expired?

Beer cans are always stamped on the bottom. Bottles are usually on the necks, but sometimes the date is on the label. Most American beers use expiration dates, but some use bottling/canning dates.

What is considered a stale beer?

Any beer that's been laying around too long, regardless of whether it was pasteurized, reaches a point when it goes stale (becomes oxidized). The result is a beer that smells and tastes papery in the early stages and cardboardy in the advanced stages.

Does water go stale?

But that's not what makes old water taste stale. After about 12 hours tap water starts to go flat as carbon dioxide in the air starts to mix with the water in the glass, lowering its pH and giving it an off taste. But it's most-likely safe to drink.

Can you get botulism from beer?

Can you get botulism if a beer can has a little dent? It's doubtful. Clostridium botulinum can't grow in beer so unless the bacteria was present during the brewing process, leaving its toxins in the beer (it's those toxins that can kill you), you're safe. But reported cases of botulism even from home brew are rare.

CAN expired beer kill you?


Unlike food, beer isn't going to spoil. So, it's not dangerous or anything to drink expired beer. I wouldn't recommend it as a practice, but you could probably return it if it is skunked anyway. While skunked beer might make you sick in the drinking sense, you'll be fine in the medical sense.

Is it OK to drink opened beer?

Once the beer is opened, it should be drunk within a day or two. After that time, in most cases it'll be fine, but its taste will be far from what you've expected (it'll be flat). That means that there's no sense in storing beer after opening – after two days it'll taste stale and you'll probably discard it either way.

How many beers does it take to get drunk?

You can probably sip and consume one (normal) beer per hour and go all evening without getting seriously “drunk.” But I'll answer your question by saying that if you throw down four beers in an hour you will be classified as “drunk” by some people (some of them may be law enforcement officers).

Can bad beer give you food poisoning?

Salmonella is probably the most common cause of food poisoning and it cannot survive about 150F or exposure to alcohol. If you ate something that was contaminated along with the beer, there's a 50/50 chance the beer would have killed the bacteria in your stomach.

Does beer go flat if not refrigerated?

Cold stored beer will last longer, especially if it is a hoppy brew, but there is no real harm done to the beer if you take it out of the fridge and let it warm to room temperature, then chill it down again. With a few exceptions, beer is meant to be consumed fresh, and it should be treated that way.

Is it OK to drink out of date cider?


Hard Cider Can Be Aged
But be careful, because most ciders are made specifically for a shelf life of two years. Most ciders, if kept over their shelf life limit, will eventually yield cider vinegar—yuck. If your cider has gone bad, you will likely get a strong vinegar taste in your drink.

Does beer improve with age?

Yes, some beers can improve with age, but cellaring beer provides no guarantee that the beer will be any better than when it was fresh. True, the volatile compounds, like hop aroma, that make up flavors and aromas change when beer is aged. The same idea is correct with beer.

Does unpasteurized beer need to be refrigerated?

There is certainly no rule that says unpasteurized beers must be refrigerated. Almost all vintage beer you will try is unpasteurized, and the chances are extremely low that the beer was kept in a fridge the entire time.