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Can You Freeze Tartar Sauce?

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French cuisine is a real treasure in our modern world when we have access to every possible ingredient. Foods and ingredients that once were luxury commodities can now be found in every store and prepared in every home around the world. 

One of the simplest yet most wondrously flavorful sauces that French cuisine has given us is known as Tartar sauce.

With nothing more than a handful of simple ingredients and a few minutes of your time, you can create the perfect sauce for literally any dish. Of course, you can also find it ready in every store. 

The most important question about foods is how to properly store them. With sauces, for example, we are often left with leftovers that we prefer to freeze. With most sauces, freezing is a valid possibility.

The question here is – can you freeze tartar sauce? You typically cannot freeze tartar sauce, since the base for it is usually mayonnaise, which is unsuitable for freezing. The mayonnaise will likely separate, leaving your sauce in pieces. The only way to successfully freeze tartar is to mix and freeze all the other ingredients, but add the mayonnaise after you thaw the semi-prepared sauce.

In this article, we will go into detail about what tartar sauce is, why it simply can’t be frozen in its fully prepared state, and how long tartar sauce can usually last.

What is Tartar Sauce?

Tartar sauce is a classic cold sauce originating from French cuisine, the main components of which are hard-boiled egg yolk, vegetable oil, and green onions. It is usually served with fish (fried, boiled, or baked), seafood, and some meat or vegetable dishes.

The process of making a classic tartar sauce is similar to making mayonnaise. In fact, most people choose to use mayonnaise as a base for the sauce. 

In case you prefer to skip on the additional calories that mayonnaise provides, you should mix egg yolks with vinegar (you can take lemon juice as a substitute), salt, and pepper. Then, stirring constantly, you should add vegetable oil to it, beating it into an emulsion. 

Add auxiliary ingredients like green onions, pickles, garlic, or others to your taste, and voila! 

Of course, tartar sauce can be bought in the store ready-made, but it is much more interesting to cook it yourself. In addition, tartar sauce which is prepared at home has a richer and spicier taste than store-bought varieties. 

The cooked sauce does not involve the use of complex ingredients. Therefore, the sauce is an excellent option for treating unexpected guests because any dish complemented by it will become more refined and unique in taste.

Can you Freeze Tartar Sauce?

As we stated above, in most cases, store-bought tartar sauce will have mayonnaise as a base ingredient. This means that most sauces will not be suitable for freezing.

In fact, many of the renowned brands that sell tartar sauce will have it labeled with a note that says it should not be frozen

What happens if you attempt to freeze tartar sauce? In most cases, the mayonnaise will separate when frozen. What you will find once you thaw the sauce will be a literal disaster – the sauce will be in pieces – and it will be impossible to get it back to its original state. 

In case you want to have some tartar sauce in storage for later, consider preparing it at home by yourself. Instead of adding mayonnaise during the preparation process, leave it for after you thaw it in the future. 

This way, you can freeze the partially prepared tartar sauce and prevent it from separating. 

How Long Does Tartar Sauce Last?

Homemade tartar sauce will not last more than several days in the refrigerator but store-bought sauces are a different thing.  

Tartar sauce normally comes in glass bottles and is prepared to last long on the shelf. If you have unopened bottles of tartar, do not store them in the refrigerator. Keep them in a cool and dry location in your pantry.

In most cases, it should keep well for over a year but it will be safe for consumption beyond this period too. 

As for an opened bottle of tartar sauce, you should always store it perfectly sealed in a refrigerator. The general rule regarding tartar sauce is that it can remain for up to 6 months in a refrigerator but there is a curious note that we must mention.

If you store it properly in the refrigerator, tartar sauce should be fit for use even past the expiration date although you should always look for signs of spoilage. 

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