Can you eat pizza left out overnight

In this brief guide, we will address the query, “can you eat pizza left out overnight?” We will also discuss how long can you leave pizza unrefrigerated and what is the proper way to store this food.

Can you eat pizza left out overnight?

No, you cannot eat pizza left out overnight. According to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), pizzas are considered perishable food and should be stored at cold temperatures at all times to prevent rapid spoilage.

When you leave pizza unrefrigerated for more than two hours, bacteria growth will occur rapidly, causing pizza to spoil. Even though pizza is such a delicious snack, it will go bad soon or later, if you care about providing proper storage, you can delay this phenomenon.

Even though you see pizza’s appearance remains the same this does not mean that bacteria have not grown on it. If you eat any type of cooked food that was left unrefrigerated you likely get a foodborne illness.

Keeping pizza properly stored will help you to delay bacteria growth, which will cause you to enjoy for a longer period the delicious taste of pizza. With only a couple of minutes, you will enlarge the shelf life of this food.

How long does pizza last?

Pizza is such delicious food that will be the best solution on a day you do not feel like cooking. However, you should be careful with the way you store this food, it is not recommended to leave it at room temperature for more than a couple of hours.

Storing pizza properly is key to enjoying its flavor for a longer period, but do not expect it to have a very long shelf life. When refrigerated, pizza can last for up to 4 days only, if you want to preserve it for longer, freezing is also an option.

Also, if you are more of a homemade pizza person, you need to know that you should not let it outside the fridge for a long time. Storing it at cold temperatures is the only way to go with homemade pizza.

In the chart below you will find how long can you keep pizza according to the place you store it.

Shelf life of pizza
TypeIn the counterIn the fridgeIn the freezer
Take-out pizza1 day3 to 5 days4 to 6 months
Frozen pizza1 day3 to 5 days4 to 6 months
Homemade pizza3 to 5 days4 to 6 months

How to store leftover pizza?

Keeping your pizza properly stored is key to enlarging the shelf life of your pizza and preventing rapid spoilage. It is not recommended to keep your pizza in the box that came in, you should transfer the leftover into an airtight container.

The airtight container will help you to keep the moisture of the food, which means that even though it is stored at cold temperatures, it will not go dry. You can also choose to wrap each piece of pizza with plastic wrap.

If you want to store it in the freezer, you should follow the same steps but you need to find a freezer-appropriate container. 

Can you reheat the pizza?

If you feel like enjoying pizza one more time, you can reheat it in the oven or the microwave. You should reheat it until it reaches a temperature above 165°F, this is when you use the oven or a frying pan.

If you want to save some time, you can use the microwave to reheat the leftover pizza. However, you need to know that microwaving the slices of pizza, might not be as effective to kill bacteria as the other options.

Remember that killing bacteria is important to prevent food poisoning, you can get further guidance on this subject if you click here.

Is it okay to eat unrefrigerated pizza if you reheat it?

This will depend on how long you left the pizza unrefrigerated, if it was for less than 2 hours, you can safely reheat and eat it without any serious consequences. However, if the pizza was left out for a longer time, it might not be the best idea to do so.

This is why it is recommended to store the leftover pizza as soon as you can to prevent getting a foodborne illness.

Can you freeze pizza?

Yes, you can also freeze the pizza. Freezing your pizza will be helpful to enlarge considerably the shelf life of this food, make sure you follow all of the recommendations listed above to do it correctly.


In this brief guide, we have addressed the query, “can you eat pizza left out overnight?” We have also discussed how long can you leave this food unrefrigerated and what are the risks of doing so.

Hope you found this blog useful. If you have any questions, please let us know.


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