Coconut aminos have a long shelf life of around three years when they’re unopened. Once opened, coconut aminos usually last at least a year in the refrigerator.
Some people choose to use their coconut aminos even longer than that (even if they aren’t stored in the refrigerator) since they are preserved with sodium and aren’t at high risk of spoiling. When in doubt, you should follow the instructions listed on the label for the best storage tips.
If you’ve never used coconut aminos, you might be wondering what they are and how they’re commonly used. I’ll cover all of the basics of coconut aminos (and how I use them in my own cooking) plus compare them to more popular options like soy sauce in this article!
How long do coconut aminos last after opening?
While a bottle of unopened coconut aminos can last up to three years in your pantry, the shelf life might be a bit shorter once it’s opened. After opening, most types of coconut aminos will last around 6-12 months in the refrigerator.
Some people choose to store their coconut aminos at room temperature, such as in a dark pantry. However, one of the most popular brands of coconut aminos (Bragg) recommends refrigerating opened coconut aminos.
Do coconut aminos go bad if they’re not refrigerated?
Eventually yes. I’d recommend that you refrigerate coconut aminos once you open the bottle. Coconut aminos aren’t prone to spoil quickly, but they might lose their optimal flavor if they are stored outside of the refrigerator for long periods once opened.
One of the reasons coconut aminos don’t spoil quickly is their high sodium content, which acts as a preservative.
What exactly are coconut aminos?
Coconut aminos are a type of cooking sauce/condiment, similar to soy sauce. They can be used in place of soy sauce while cooking or to add additional flavor to existing dishes.
Coconut aminos are similar to soy sauce in appearance and are a dark brown color packaged in bottles. Of course, if you make your own coconut aminos at home (surprisingly easy), you can package them however you like!
What are coconut aminos used for?
Coconut aminos can be used in recipes like poke bowls, stir-fries, and fried rice as an alternative to soy sauce, as well as a marinade.
Coconut aminos are used as a substitute for soy sauce and teriyaki sauce to provide savory and “umami” flavors in cooking. (Here’s a list of top coconut aminos uses and brands.) One of the amino acids coconut aminos contain is glutamate, which is popular in the seasoning monosodium glutamate (aka MSG), often used in processed salty foods and some restaurant foods (especially Chinese food).
How are coconut aminos made?
Coconut aminos are made by fermenting raw coconut sap, which is harvested from the flowers of the coconut tree. Salt is added in the process, and some brands add additional flavors afterward, like ginger.
If you wan to make coconut aminos yourself, here’s my favorite coconut aminos recipe, which includes step-by-step instructions and plenty of flavoring ideas.
What are the benefits of coconut aminos?
Why choose coconut aminos over traditional soy sauce? Some of the benefits of coconut aminos over its alternatives include:
- Lower in sodium, which makes coconut aminos more suitable for those watching their salt intake (high blood pressure, kidney disease, etc.).
- Naturally gluten-free (soy sauce contains gluten) and soy-free.
- Suitable for special diets such as Whole30, which avoids soy.
Differences between coconut aminos and other alternatives: nutrition, allergies, etc.
|1 tbsp. coconut aminos (Bragg)||1 tbsp soy sauce (Kikkoman)||1 tbsp. Tamari sauce (San-J)||1 tbsp. Teriyaki sauce|
|Fat||0 g||0 g||0 g||0 g|
|Sodium||420 mg||960 mg||940 mg||690 mg|
|Total Carbohydrates||6 g||1 g||1 g||2.8 g|
|Total sugars||6 g||–||–||2.5 g|
|Added sugars||6 g||–||–||–|
|Protein||0 g||2 g||0 g||1.1 g|
|Gluten-free?||Yes||No||Yes||Not listed (USDA)|
|Soy-free?||Yes||No||No||Not listed (USDA)|
- Coconut aminos are lower in sodium than soy sauce, tamari sauce, and teriyaki sauce.
- Soy sauce and tamari sauce are lower in carbohydrates since they don’t contain sugar (coconut sap provides the sugar in coconut aminos). Teriyaki sauce contains sugar, and some brands of teriyaki sauce are especially high in added sugar.
- Coconut aminos are suitable for those with soy and gluten sensitivities/allergies, whereas soy sauce and teriyaki sauce usually aren’t. Tamari is suitable for those avoiding gluten and is more similar to soy sauce than coconut aminos.
Easy coconut aminos recipes
To give you a feel for some great ways to sub in coconut aminos for added healthy flavors, here are three great coconut aminos recipes I love:
- Chicken pad thai (paleo-friendly)
- Easy crockpot teriyaki chicken (paleo + gluten-free)
- Paleo honey chicken
Looking for more coconut aminos recipes? Let me know in the comments!
Best coconut aminos to buy
This will be the subject of a longer post, but here at The Coconut Mama we’re big fans of both Thrive coconut aminos and Coconut Secret coconut aminos. Both are organic, straightforward, with few ingredients. Regardless of what you buy, make sure you buy organic and check the label for extra chemicals and preservatives!
Coconut aminos and liquid aminos aren’t the same product. Coconut aminos are made from coconut sap and don’t contain soy, whereas liquid aminos are made by fermenting soybeans so the amino acids break free from the soy protein.
Liquid aminos are more similar to soy sauce in taste, while coconut aminos are described as having a sweeter and “lighter” taste.
Bragg’s coconut aminos will likely last around three years when unopened, and will generally last at least a year after opening when stored in the refrigerator. However, you should refer to the product label for “best by” or expiration dates to ensure ideal flavor and freshness.