Properly stored, olive oil will keep longer than other edible oils: up to two years. However, once opened, it is best to use the oil within 60 to 90 days. (Some varietals remain fresh much longer due to their acid structure, but this is a good rule of thumb.)
So, buy the size that you need and use a Sharpie to mark the bottle with the date you opened it. And keep it away from light and heat.
When oils turn rancid, they take on an unpleasant musty aroma and flavor, and are best poured down the drain. But if you find that the bottle has simply turned flat and you don’t like the taste, here are other uses for it, courtesy of OliveOilShop.com:
2. Remove Spots From Wood Floors & Furniture. If you have water or alcohol spots on polished wood or furniture, simply rub a little olive oil on the spot. Let it soak in, then gently rub off any excess oil.
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3. Remove Stuck-On Labels. Sometimes, adhesive-backed labels stick to counters and tabletops. Don’t try to scrape off the paper. Instead, dab a little olive oil on it, let the oil soak in for a few minutes and then remove the paper by rubbing it with your fingers.
4. Remove Paint From Hair & Skin. If you’ve gotten spattered while painting, moisten a cotton ball some olive oil and gently rub it into skin or hair. It will act as a solvent to remove paint, and it is not harsh like turpentine and other chemical solvents.
5. Preserve Gardening Tools. Clippers, pruning shears and trowels can benefit from leftover olive oil. Before putting the tools away, clean off any dirt or grime. Then lightly oil the tool with a small amount of olive oil on a cloth. The oil guards against dirt buildup and no rust, so your tools will last longer. Keep the bottle in your garage or tool shed; put it in a spray bottle or mister to prevent glass breakage.
6. Lubricate Hinges. Before there was WD-50, there was olive oil. To lubricate squeaky hinges on doors, put a small amount of olive oil at the top of the hinge and let the drops of oil run down by moving the hinge back and forth. Wipe off the excess with a cloth. This also works on the oven door, refrigerator doors, tool box latch, plastic coolers and other latches.
7. Hair Conditioner. Before commercial hair conditioners, women used olive oil. Measure 1/2 cup of olive oil. Wet your hair, then warm 1 tablespoon of olive oil at a time in your palms. Massage it into your scalp in a circular motion. Repeat until the entire scalp has been massaged. Rub the ends of your hair with the remaining oil. Then cover your hair with a plastic bag, secure with hair clip or bobby pins, and allow the oil to remain for 30-60 minutes. (If you have a heat cap, use it). Rinse and shampoo.
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