If you're a fan of Chick-Fil-A sauce, you probably take a few extra sauce packets every time you visit your local takeout. For how long does Chick Fil A sauce last is one lingering question. Or how quickly you should use them up before they go off. Well, wonder no more.
So, how long does Chick Fil A sauce last? Quick answer. It all depends on the packaging. Individual packets could only last 7 to 14 days. However, if you bought one of the 8-oz squeezable bottles, it comes with a "best before 90 days" tag written on the label.
Indeed, how these accumulated single packets are stored could influence how much time to maintain their freshness.
Let's discuss it in more detail below. Please read on.
Why is Chick-fil-A sauce so famous?
You might think that Chick-Fil-A sauce owes its popularity to its branding. That may be true to a certain extent, but it's all down to its fabulous taste at the end of the day.
The flavor is like a crossover between barbecue and honey mustard sauce. It's delicious and not just suitable for Chick-Fil-A sandwiches but also for many other homemade sandwiches.
But that's what happened. It comes to something when the sauce takeout offers is as highly regarded as the sandwiches, nuggets, strips, and wraps. It first appeared in 2014 and has become a favorite with many Americans.
Here's what makes Chick Fil A sauce so awesome.
1 Ingredients and disclosure
You don't have to be Sherlock Holmes to figure out what's in this delicious sauce. It's just as well. I don't have a deerstalker, magnifying glass, or pipe to hand. Luckily, I didn't need them. It was pretty easy to find out.
The Chick-Fil-A website reveals all. Ingredients include barbecue sauce, lemon juice, mustard, sugar, and vinegar, but the egg yolk mixture is the tipping point to get the party going.
2 Dietary info
Why is it that the best tasting things are not necessarily that healthy? Good old Chick-Fil-A sauce has its fair share of sodium and fat, but hey, it is fast food we're talking about, after all. Another 140 calories aren't going to sink the ship.
But even Chick-Fil-A must bow to peer pressure. Rumour has it that they want to make their food healthier but keep it quiet if customers think they're losing out taste-wise.
They're doing a pretty good job if they are on a health kick. So far, I can't detect any real difference in flavor.
How Long does Chick Fil A sauce last?
Don't worry. It's perfectly okay to take extra packets of Chick-Fil-A sauce when you leave the takeout. Most of us do. However, you might get some funny looks if you took a wheelbarrow to fill up.
Taking that many sauces for home use would, of course, raise the question of what would they go off before you gorge your way through them.
The answer is yes; they probably would. Remember I mentioned earlier that the packet sauce only lasts for one to two weeks. You'd have to eat them with everything to wade your way through that fast.
I can't say I like the idea of breakfast cereal with Chick-Fil-A sauce. I do like the stuff, but there are limits.
You can keep an unopened bottle for up to 90 days, but it will deteriorate over time once opened. But as long as the sauce hasn't gone off (the tell-tale signs I'll discuss with you later), it won't make you ill if you consume it.
How much longer does the Chick Fil A sauce last relies mainly on its packaging: bottled or packeted version. However, it won't taste as good as when you first acquired it—more on this below.
Related: How to Reheat Chick Fil A sandwich
1 For the bottled version
How they pack the Chick-Fil-A sauce makes all the difference. There is much more sauce volume in an 8-ounce bottle than in packets, even more so with the 16-ounce bottle.
There would be far too much waste if they weren't designed to last longer than pods. The sauce comes with a "best-before 90 days" tag date.
You can buy the 16-ounce bottles at various retail stores, including Food Lion, Harris Teeter, HEB, Publix, Target, Walmart, Winn-Dixie, Kroger, Albertson's, and Safeway.
Each time you buy a 16-oz bottle, all royalties are donated to the Chick-Fil-A Remarkable Futures Scholarship program. To date, this initiative has funded scholarships to the tune of £136 million.
2 For individual packets
Whatever you call them – packets, pods, capsules, or sachets, the packaging of these small serving sauces is not designed to last. They are giveaways, after all.
There's no "best by" date printed on the individual sauce packet as they are intended for consumption within days. Proper storage in the fridge makes them last for several months, but if you don't, they won't be so good after 7 to 14 days.
I wouldn't recommend eating these packets that have been out at room temperature for longer than 14 days max. If you leave them outside for days, the flavor will deteriorate, and after a few weeks, it will go off. I kept a few extra sauces around the house, and based on my experience, they became off quick and had a strange taste.
Chick-Fil-A takeout has a high turnover of their sauces, so they constantly take new deliveries. Rather than bothering to stockpile sauce packets at home, it's easier to ask for a few extras next time you buy one of their sandwiches. In this regard, expiration dates are indisputable for the freshest sauce packets instead of playing the sauce drawer roulette wheel.
How long the sauce (really) lasts may depend on several factors.
All good things come to an end, including how long Chick-Fil-A sauce remains edible.
Several factors have to be taken into account when considering its shelf life.
- Opened or unopened packet/pod
- Stored in proximity to a heat source like warmer cabinets near the oven and refrigerator
- Exposure to sunlight
The above storage factors play as the determinants of how long Chick Fil A sauce lasts. The sauce eventually spoils due to some of its ingredients like cholesterol, fat, and sodium. Hence, causing the change in taste and texture.
However, you can still eat it. It's just that it won't taste as good as its original state.
How long can I save Chick-Fil-A sauce?
When a takeout delivers new sauce packets or pods, they have a shelf life of approximately one year if stored correctly. In other words, you should keep them in a cool, dark, dry environment (storing them in the fridge is highly preferable).
The Washington Post published an interesting article about how long you can keep condiments. If you peek at the article in question, you'll see that each product has two dates.
The first is the storage date for unopened packs, and the second is for opened ones. Examples include:
|Item||Pantry (Unopened)||Fridge (After Opening)|
|Barbecue sauce||1 year||4 months|
|Hoisin sauce||18 to 24 months||3 to 6 months|
|Hot sauce||9 to 12 months||6 months in the pantry after opening; although refrigeration will better retain heat.|
|Jarred Spaghetti sauce||18 months||4 days|
|Mayonnaise||3 to 6 months||2 months|
|Oyster sauce||18 to 24 months||3 to 6 months|
It covers 22 items (sadly not Chick-Fil-A sauce), but enough to give you the general drift about storing various condiments.
Sauce packets don't have an expiration date printed on the individual pack. They are available in bulk, so the expiration date (which is advised by the product manufacturer) is displayed outside the container.
But generally speaking, the sachets containing condiments and sauces are sealed airtight using materials designed to stop any penetration of light and humidity. It means they should last a while.
But how long, precisely?
Clearly, there will be some changes in textures and taste when you store Chick-Fil-A sauce for an extended time. And it has nothing to do with the sauce and the packaging itself when it starts to diminish.
As I've already mentioned, it won't make you ill if you eat it, but why should you if it doesn't taste as great? If in doubt (the first giveaway is its look and smell), carry out a little taste test on the tip of your tongue. Anything that doesn't taste right, bin it.
Follow the example of the takeouts themselves and store your packets in a cool, dark, dry environment to extend their shelf life (preferably in the fridge).
How to tell if Chick Fil A sauce has gone bad?
The only way to tell whether your Chick-Fil-A sauce is turning or has gone off is to check, smell, and taste. This applies to sauce in small packets or 8-oz or 16-oz bottles.
I know it says above that you can store unopened packets or pods for quite a while. But if they're not refrigerated, you will notice a change in taste after a week or two. The bottled sauce should be okay for up to 90 days.
My general rule of thumb with any foodstuff is, if in doubt, throw it away. Why take any chances when you don't need to?
- Always check the condition of the packaging. If its integrity has been breached, it's okay to throw it away. You can always open and test if you want to, but please don't take any chances.
- The ingredients can give you a good clue about what sort of shelf-life expectancy condiment has. Anything containing fats like butter or mayo is likely to go off much quicker.
- Condiments with added vinegar can last almost indefinitely thanks to the acetic acid they contain. But package salad vinegar will lose a little quality in taste after a year.
- Foodstuffs with high sugar and low moisture content, like honey, for example, have a very long shelf life.
I referred to an article earlier in the Washington Post. It's a handy guide. To save you looking back for the link, you can click here.
Do Chick-Fil-A Sauces need refrigeration?
It's unnecessary to store Chick-Fil-A sauce in the fridge, though it is more likely favorable for me. By doing this extra step, they typically last a bit longer.
Some folks store their sauce packets in some cool, dry environment like the pantry or cupboard, and if you do the same, you won't go too far wrong. But remember that their turnover is far quicker than yours.
If you're talking about bottled Chick-Fil-A sauce, however, you'll find a recommendation printed on the bottle that, after opening, it should be kept in your fridge.
One of the ingredients is mayonnaise which, as you know, is made by whisking eggs with vegetable oil. That's where the refrigeration recommendation comes from.
If you want to create a copycat chicken sandwich, you can click the picture below for more detailed instructions or step by step video.
Can You Freeze Chick-Fil-A Sauce?
When you freeze Chick-Fil-A sauce, you'll notice some separation on the sauce once it starts defrosting. This separation can alter the taste and, of course, the texture. Therefore, it is not good to freeze its dipping sauce.
All liquids expand as they freeze, and if the container doesn't swell at the same rate the sauce does, it is likely to burst.
I have carried out some experiments to freeze Chick-Fil-A sauce, but none have been successful. At some point, I don't think it's worth the hassle.
Getting your hands on enough Chick-Fil-A sauce to satisfy your craving is not that difficult. You can take extras when you buy your sandwich, providing you leave your wheelbarrow at home.
If you've developed a genuine love for the stuff and want to use it at home with other foods – no problem. It's easy enough to buy in 8-oz or 16-oz bottles at the retail establishments mentioned earlier.
But don't forget to keep it in your fridge to maximize its taste and shelf life.