How long does cooked chicken last in the fridge. Organizing a big dinner party is always fun. But dealing with the leftover food is a hassle too.
If you are also left with a huge chicken dinner leftover, you must be looking for ways to reuse it as a quick meal or transform it into a new recipe. As chicken is a highly perishable food, storing it in the right way is imperative.
It is essential to know how long does cook chicken last in the fridge to avoid any consumption of spoiled chicken. Spoiled chicken can be highly dangerous for your health and can lead to several food-borne illnesses, including food poising.
Do you know, a cooked chicken (whether baked, roasted, or fried) is a versatile leftover that can be used in different recipes to give access to a quick yet tasty meal?
But before this, you must know how long cooked chicken last in the fridge does? So that you can use it in time to avoid any health consequences.
How To Store Cooked Chicken?
Storing cooked chicken in the right way is essential to make it last longer. Use a resealable plastic bag or airtight container to store the cooked chicken. If you are using plastic wrap or aluminium foil, wrap it tightly within the 2 hours of cooking.
If you have kept the cooked chicken at the room temperature of 40-140°F (4-60°C) for more than 2 hours, you should discard it immediately. The bacteria at this temperature proliferate and spoils the chicken after 2 hours.
Hence, you must refrigerate the cooked chicken within 2 hours of cooking to avoid its spoilage.
How Long Does Cooked Chicken Last in The Fridge?
The refrigerated chicken should be consumed within 3-4 days as recommended by USDA. This rule applies to restaurant-bought, homemade, and store-bought chicken as well. Chicken Patties and Nuggets last only for 1-2 days in the fridge as they are highly perishable food items.
If you have a massive leftover cooked chicken, which cannot be consumed within 3-4 days of refrigeration, you should freeze it to last for three months.
Take a zip-lock or airtight container to store the cooked chicken in the freezer and avoid any freeze-burn. Press out the excess air before locking the zip-lock bag and mark it with the date of storage as a ready reference.
Instead of piling up the entire stock in a single large bag, take a few small containers and freeze the cooked chicken in small quantities. So, every time you need some portions, you need not take out the entire stock.
Always thaw the frozen chicken in the refrigerator overnight before the day you are going to use it.
How To Know If The Chicken Has Gone Wrong?
A chicken turns bad when harmful bacteria like Salmonella prevail over it, which can cause food poising.
You can judge it from the sour, raunchy smell, and change in colour to grey. If you are unsure if the chicken is good or not, you should discard it immediately.
The golden rule is to discard the cooked chicken kept at room temperature for more than 2 hours and refrigerated chicken to be thrown after 3-4 days of refrigeration.
How Long Does The Raw Chicken Last?
As the chicken is highly perishable, raw or uncooked chicken lasts only for 1-2 days.
How to reuse the leftover cooked chicken?
Well, that a million-dollar question. If you are leftover with cooked chicken in good quantities, how to reuse it wisely to curate a tempting dish? So, here we go with the simple yet delicious chicken noodle soup recipe:
- Take egg noodles to derive the best taste from your soup.
- Sautee vegetables like carrot, garlic, onions, and celery in a pan
- Add seasoning and spices such as thyme, parsley, and bay leaves along with salt and pepper
- Add water, noodles and cooked chicken (leftover) and bring it to simmer
- Your delicious soup is ready to enjoy
- You can add or omit the seasoning or vegetable as per your personal preferences
- You can also use any other type of noodles if egg noodles are not available, although it tastes best.
Frequently asked Questions
Can you eat cooked chicken after seven days?
As per the US food Safety and Inspection Service, you can eat the cooked chicken within 3-4 days of its preparation, provided it should be kept in the fridge for these days. Chicken patties and nuggets must be consumed within 1-2 days.
How long is it safe to eat leftover cooked chicken?
The shelf life of a coked kitchen is not more than four days, even in the fridge. If you want to store them longer, keep them in the freezer safely. You can use this frozen chicken within three months.
Can you eat week-old chicken?
The health guidelines emphasize not to use a week old chicken. However, if it smells fine, you can consider consuming it.
Are leftovers good after seven days?
The golden rule for leftover is not to consume the food which is stale for 5-6 days or more. Especially the highly perishable foods should be consumed within 3-4 days. So, make sure that the leftovers should not sit in your fridge for as long as seven days.
What are the indicators of spoiled chicken?
While the freshly cooked chicken is white or brown, the spoiled meat turns grey. You can notice a stinky smell from a spoiled chicken. The texture of the chicken also becomes slippery.
You can even see mould growing on the chicken. Never taste such chicken as it can take a toll on your health.