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When points in the fridge start to mold, ooze, or smell, you know it’s time to throw them out. But how execute you avoid gaining to that point?

How lengthy do leftovers last?

According come the FDA Food Code, every perishable foods items that are opened or prepared have to be thrown the end after 7 days, maximum. No leftovers must survive in your fridge for much longer than that. Some foods items should be also be thrown away before the 7 job mark. Refer to expiration dates and food safety and security guidelines to know just how to handle details foods. The chart below from Foodsafety.gov is a helpful guide for food in the fridge.

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How to do leftover food last longer

If you desire your leftovers to critical longer, frozen them. Simply be certain to store track of just how long you had it in the fridge before you placed it in the freezer. Freezing stops bacterial development in that is tracks choose a auto at a red light. When you thaw your food, however, the light turns green and also bacterial growth proceeds from wherein it left off. So, follow to the graph below, steak that was in the refrigerator for 3 days before it to be frozen will certainly be good for 1 to 2 work after that is thawed. Remember that frozen foodstuffs are safe indefinitely, so the following guidelines because that freezer food refer to food quality, no safety.

Check the end our chart to view if there’s any kind of food in your refrigerator or freezer that demands to it is in thrown out.

CategoryFoodRefrigerator(40 °F or below)Freezer(0 °F or below)
SaladsEgg, chicken, ham, tuna, & macaroni salads3 come 5 daysDoes not freeze well
Hot dogsOpened package1 week1 come 2 months
Unopened package2 weeks1 to 2 months
Lunch meatOpened parcel or deli sliced3 to 5 days1 come 2 months
Unopened package2 weeks1 come 2 months
Bacon & sausageRaw bacon7 days1 month
Raw sausage make from chicken, turkey, pork, or beef1 come 2 days1 to 2 months
Hamburger & other ground meatsRaw hamburger, soil beef, turkey, veal, pork, lamb, & mixture of them1 come 2 days3 to 4 months
Raw beef, veal, lamb, & porkSteaks3 come 5 days6 come 12 months
Chops3 come 5 days4 to 6 months
Roasts3 come 5 days4 come 12 months
Raw poultryChicken or turkey, whole1 to 2 days1 year
Chicken or turkey, pieces1 come 2 days9 months
Soups & StewsVegetable or meat added3 to 4 days2 come 3 months
LeftoversCooked meat or poultry3 to 4 days2 to 6 months
Chicken nuggets or patties3 come 4 days1 come 3 months
Pizza3 to 4 days1 come 2 months

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Editor’s note: This article was originally published in January 2014 and has to be updated because that freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.