kahlua go bad

Does Kahlua Go Bad? Tips for Making It Last Longer

Quick summary: Yes, Kahlua can go bad over time, particularly in flavor and aroma. While it won’t spoil in the same way that perishable foods do, the taste and quality of the coffee liqueur can deteriorate, especially due to coffee and sugar.

Kahlua is originally a Mexican liqueur but is used worldwide, especially as a base for cocktail recipes due to its aromatic compounds. It has rum, sugar, vanilla bean, and Arabica coffee in it. It actually contains all the yummy ingredients we love, so it’s no wonder it’s a great addition to delicatessen drinks. You can, of course, consume it on its own and enjoy it with a cup of regular coffee just to spice up the day a bit. 

The word says it takes several years to produce a Kahlua drink. So how long does this alcoholic drink last?  Well, long. But not forever as you may have first thought due to the presence of rum. It won’t spoil in the classic sense of the word if it’s properly stored, but the aroma of the coffee will surely fade over the years so that it won’t be as tasty anymore.  

How Long Does Kahlua Last?

As we said, due to the presence of alcohol, the product will not spoil in the sense that it’ll make you sick, but the taste will be significantly reduced. The manufacturers have tested the shelf life in which the aroma of coffee retains its flavor best and placed the expiration date accordingly. If you can’t find one written on the back, search for the production date and calculate in what time will Kahlua expire.  

Unopened Kahlua 

If the bottle is unopened and you have kept it in somewhat favorable conditions in a dark and not too hot place, the shelf life will be four years. The producers discovered that after that time, the aroma of coffee was no longer the same. Of course, the earlier you use the drink, the better.      

Opened Bottle of Kahlua 

So how long does Kahlua last after opening? Once you open the bottle and start using the drink, it will again apply the rule to consume it as soon as possible. Stability should be maintained for the next eighteen months, but the beverage will definitely be better after seven days of opening than after a year. You can be sure of that.  

Can Kahlua Go Bad? 

Although it is an alcoholic beverage, due to the presence of sugar and coffee, the product has the best by date, and it will certainly not be possible to maintain the quality for a long time after it. If you drink an expired drink, you will not be harmed, but the taste will no longer be the same. Here are a few signs of how you can recognize that it’s better to replace a bottle of liqueur.       

Sign 1: Mold appeared

Yes, mold can appear. Not in the liquid itself due to alcohol content, but on the cap and top of the bottle. If you notice this, you better throw everything in the trash.    

Sign 2: Taste is off  

A sure sign that something is wrong is a change in the taste of the drink. If only the aroma of coffee has faded, the drink is safe for consumption, but if something tastes lousy, the product is spoiled. Unlike whiskey, you cannot count on this drink to stay unchanged forever.   

Sign 3: It has funny smell   

You will notice a very unpleasant odor if the beverage is completely spoiled. It just won’t smell as pleasant as usual. 

Sign 4: It has a different color 

A color change may also indicate a product fault. If it is different than usual, it may mean that the Kahlua is no longer suitable for drinking. If tiny sugar crystals have appeared, all is okay.

Which is the Best Way to Store Kahlua? 

Proper storage of food and beverages can significantly contribute to the quality and longevity of the product. Here are tips on how to preserve this sweet liqueur and how to store Kahlua properly.  

Tip 1: Keep an unopened bottle of Kahlua in the pantry 

Like any other food or drink product, Kahlua doesn’t like the sun or too much heat. A cooler and darker place will be best for the long-term storage of this delicious coffee liqueur. If you don’t have a pantry, try to keep new bottle in kitchen cabinets away from heat sources or in a liquor cabinet.      

Tip 2: After opening, keep in the refrigerator    

It is not necessary to store the Kahlua bottle in the fridge after opening, but it is certainly recommended. It is best to serve it finely chilled, so why not keep the bottle in the refrigerator the entire time of use. This will definitely help preserve the quality. If you don’t have enough space in the fridge, place the drink an hour or two before you are ready to drink Kahlua. 

Tip 3: Keep it well closed 

Returning the cap to the bottle after use is crucial when storing Kahlua if you want the product to last for a long time. Always keep the original lid on the tightly sealed bottle. This will ensure the best protection.    


How long does Kahlua last when opened?

After opening, it will be best to consume the product within a year, but it will last for eighteen months.

Can you get sick from drinking expired Kahlua?

No, drinking expired Kahlua is not likely to cause serious illness, but it might lead to some mild discomfort due to changes in its properties.

Does Kahlua need to be refrigerated after opening?

No, it is not mandatory to keep the drink in the refrigerator after opening. However, this is recommended to maintain the quality but also the better taste when serving. So, refrigerate Kahlua if you have a spare area.

How do you know if Kahlua has gone bad?

You can tell if Kahlua has gone bad by noting any significant changes in color, texture, or odor. If it appears significantly different or develops an off-putting smell, it’s best to avoid consuming it.

Can you drink 10 year old Kahlua?

No, it’s not advisable to drink Kahlua that is 10 years old due to potential deterioration in quality and safety.


There are many ways to enjoy this sweet Mexican liqueur. You can consume it alone or as a combination in one of the delicious recipes for cocktails or espresso martini. Kahlua will be a real treat for the palate with its strong coffee flavor. Keep it in a cool, dark place and close the bottle tightly each time after use. This will ensure that the quality of sweet taste is maintained for several years as intended with long shelf life. 

Over time, the aroma of coffee fades, so it is better to consume the product earlier than wait for years to pass. Yet, from drinking old liqueur, you shouldn’t have any harmful consequences. Assuming you didn’t drink too much Kahlua, of course. 

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