5-Minute Crafts
5-Minute Crafts

How Long You Can Safely Store Meat

The fact that chilled food stays fresh for longer has been known to people since prehistoric times. Leaving food in a cold place or burying it in the snow helped it spoil slower. Although, at that time, people didn’t quite understand why this was happening. Centuries later, scientists found that refrigeration slows down the growth of bacteria that make food spoiled.

5-Minute Crafts would like to tell you about how long meat, fish, and seafood can be stored.

How long meat, fish and seafood can be stored in the fridge

Bacteria grow most rapidly at temperatures from 40°F to 140°F. And some microorganisms are capable of doubling their number in just 20 minutes. To protect food, it’s recommended that you store it in a refrigerator set at 40°F or below.

  • Fresh meat (steaks, chops, roasts, etc.) is stored at low temperatures for 3-5 days. This applies equally to beef, veal, lamb, and pork.
  • Variety meats (tongue, kidney, liver, heart, etc.) can be stored in the refrigerator for no more than 1-2 days.
  • The storage time of fresh poultry is shorter. Chicken, turkey (parts or whole), and poultry giblets can be safely stored in the refrigerator for 1-2 days.
  • Ground meats (veal, beef, lamb, pork), ground poultry, and stew meats can be stored safely in the refrigerator for 1-2 days.
  • Cooked bacon and sausages can be kept in the refrigerator for up to one week. Sausages purchased frozen can be refrigerated for 3-4 days after cooking, while unprocessed sausages can be stored for only 1-2 days. Hard sausages, like pepperoni, can be stored in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks.
  • Hot dogs in their original packaging can be stored for about 2 weeks, and once opened, it’s advisable to consume them within a week’s time.
  • Fish, regardless of its fat content, is recommended to be stored in the refrigerator for no longer than 1-3 days.
  • The storage time of seafood may vary slightly. Fresh crab and lobster can be safely refrigerated for 2-4 days, and live crab and lobster can be stored for just 1 day. Live mussels, oysters, and scallops can be stored for 5-10 days, and shelled mussels can be stored for 3-10 days. Squid can be stored for up to 3 days, while crayfish and shrimp can be stored for 3-5 days.
  • Cooked meat (including poultry) can be kept in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.
  • Cooked chicken nuggets and patties stay fresh in the refrigerator for 3-4 days, and stew meats last for 1-2 days.

How long meat, fish, and seafood can be stored in the freezer

In theory, food stored in a freezer continuously at 0°F or below can be kept indefinitely. However, the longer the food remains in the freezer, the worse its quality becomes. Even foods with a long shelf life are recommended to be stored for no more than one year.

  • Frozen meat (veal, beef, lamb, pork) can be easily stored for 4 to 12 months.
  • Ground meats, ground poultry, and hamburger meat remain fresh in the freezer for 3-4 months.
  • Frozen bacon can be stored for up to 1 month, and sausages and hot dogs can be stored for no more than 2 months.
  • whole chicken or turkey will stay delicious for about 12 months. Poultry frozen in parts can be stored for 9 months.
  • Lean fish should not be frozen for longer than 4-8 months, and fatty fish should not be stored in the freezer for longer than 2-3 months.
  • You can freeze lobster and crab meat for a period of 2 to 4 months. Shrimp, crayfish, and squid can stay frozen for 6-18 months. Shelled clams, mussels, oysters, and scallops can be stored in the freezer for 3-4 months.
  • Meat and fish leftovers can also be frozen and stored for a long time. Meat or poultry can stay fresh in the freezer for 2 to 6 months, fish for 3 months, chicken nuggets and patties for 1-3 months, and meat soup, broth, and stew meats for about 2-3 months.
5-Minute Crafts/Tricks/How Long You Can Safely Store Meat
Share This Article
You may like these articles