Do You Have To Refrigerate Orange Juice?

A glass of cold orange juice – it’s hard to imagine something more refreshing throughout the summer.

So it seems obvious to put a juice from a store in the fridge. But, is it necessary? Does orange juice have to be refrigerated? Does it go bad if you leave it on the kitchen counter?

Let’s find out!

Does Orange Juice Need To Be Refrigerated?

Shortly, yes. Orange juice needs to be refrigerated most of the time. If you bought orange juice that has been stored in the fridge, then accordingly, it should be kept in the fridge. Those types of orange juice require refrigeration all the time.

Let’s see whether the fridge is needed for unopened and open orange juice.


Does Unopened Orange Juice Need To Be Refrigerated?

Shelf-stable orange juice has been processed and pasteurized in a way that ensures storing in a cool and dark location until it has been opened. You can keep it in your pantry. The unopened orange juice has a long shelf life, it will last about one, two or even three years.

unopened orange juice

Does Open Orange Juice Need To Be Refrigerated?

Once you open any type of orange juice, you must refrigerate it. When it comes to room temperature, orange juice can sit for a little while before it starts to go bad. According to the FDA, you shouldn’t leave it for more than two or more hours at room temperature. In that short period, bacteria growth will occur and that can cause health issues.

Does Orange Juice Go Bad?

The simple and short answer is yes, orange juice can go bad if it’s not refrigerated at time or if it’s expired. As we mentioned above, the type of juice you buy determines how long it will last. Anyway, when opened, any orange juice type should be consumed in a short period.

drinking orange juice

The main reason orange juice has gone bad is sugar and acid content. Sugar easily begins to ferment and turns into alcohol. This process allows mold, bacteria and other pathogenic microorganisms to start growing.

How Do You Know If Orange Juice Has Gone Bad?

It isn’t so difficult to tell if orange juice has gone bad. All you need to do is to take a good look and do a smell test. If you notice a weird odor coming from juice packaging or a disgusting stain on it, you should throw that orange juice out.

spoiled orange juice

Check out the juice color, if it has turned a dark orange, green or brown color, it’s probably not good anymore. Also, if the orange juice package appears to be bloated then it’s bad. Finally, if you see any mold, don’t even try to taste it, just throw it away.

Risk Of Consuming An Expired Orange Juice

Well, you open yourself up to the risk of getting sick. What happens after the expiration date?

Your orange juice will start to ferment, the bacteria will begin to grow and that will result in food poisoning.

woman in bathroom
That can cause stomach issues, diarrhea and even more severe consequences that can lead up to the hospital.

What About Oranges?

The whole oranges can be left at room temperature, but they won’t last nearly as long as oranges stored in the fridge.
Don’t wash or cut oranges until you’ll going to consume them. If you want to keep oranges in the bowl, put them in a cool and dark place to prevent heat and light damage.

How Long Does Orange Juice Last In The Fridge?

The correct answer depends on many factors, but broadly speaking, opened orange juice can last for between six and ten days stored in the fridge.

How Long Does Frozen Orange Juice Last?

If you have frozen or decide to freeze the orange juice, then the type of juice doesn’t matter.

orange juice in the freezer

Whether the juice is opened or still sealed, won’t affect how long it will last in the freezer. Commercially canned/bottled and fresh squeezed orange juice will all last about three to six months in the freezer.

How To Store Orange Juice?

That depends on the type of orange juice and we can say there are 4 main types of orange juice.

  1. Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice – It should be stored in the refrigerator because there aren’t any preservatives in this kind of juice. If you not planning to drink it immediately, store it in the fridge. It should be used as soon as possible. Fresh orange juice has a short lifespan even in the fridge, so drink it quickly.
  2. fresh-squeezed juice

  3. Commercially Canned Orange Juice – It’s sold unrefrigerated and if it’s unopened, you can store it in a cool and dark place. If the container is clear, make sure to keep the orange juice away from light. The light and heat will negatively affect the juice. When opened, keep it in the fridge.
  4. canned orange juice

  5. Commercially Bottled Orange Juice – The most popular orange juice type. Just like the previous type of juice, keep it in a cool and dark area when unopened. Once the bottle is opened, you should seal it and store it in the fridge.
  6. Refrigerated Orange Juice – If you bought orange juice from the refrigerated area of your local store, then it must be kept in your fridge until you drink it.

To Wrap It Up

Shortly, once orange juice is opened, you must store it in the refrigerator. Some orange juice types can be stored in a dark and cool place until opened. Keep your orange juice properly stored for the best quality and taste.

As an English major student at the time, Petra was stuck at home with online classes when the lockdown started. Soon enough, Petra discovered a passion for cooking and making pastries to pass the time. She started small with some experimenting and trying out new techniques inspired by French, Italian, and Asian cuisine. Since then, she has become a full-blown “little chef”, making dinner parties for her friends and expanding her knowledge with cooking classes.