How long can chicken stay in the fridge?

In this brief article, we are going to answer the question, “How long can chicken stay in the fridge?”

How long can chicken stay in the fridge?

Chicken can stay in the fridge for about 4 to 5 days. The USDA recommends eating raw chicken within 1–2 days of bringing it home from the store. Raw poultry, including turkey, is similarly unsafe.

Chicken stored in the refrigerator is safer since bacterial development is hindered at temperatures below 40 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius).

In addition, it’s ideal to keep raw chicken in an airtight container so that its fluids don’t seep out and taint other dishes. Chicken may be stored in the refrigerator for up to three days if stored in a sealed container after cooking.

Chicken should be kept in the freezer if it is to be kept for more than a few days.

The shelf life of raw chicken in the freezer is 9 months for parts and 1 year for a full bird. Stored properly, chicken may be kept in the freezer lasting up to six months after it has been cooked.

Chicken spoilage indicators

There’s a good possibility that chicken that’s been inside the fridge for more than a few days has gone rotten.

Here are some signs that the chicken in your fridge has gone bad that you may look out for.

  • The “best by” date has passed. Raw and cooked chicken that is past its “best if used by/before” date has a higher risk of being spoiled.
  • Slight color shifts. Chicken, whether raw and cooked, that has begun to turn grayish green, has gone rotten. Instances of grayish-green mold are indicative of bacterial development.
  • Smell. When chicken spoils, it gives out an ammonia-like odor and an acidic odor whether it’s raw or cooked. In contrast, if the chicken has already been seasoned in sauces, herbs, or spices, the marinade may mask the bird’s natural aroma.
  • Texture. The chicken has gone rotten if it has a slimy feel. Chicken germs cannot be removed by rinsing. Instead, it can cause cross-contamination of other meals, utensils, and surfaces by bacteria that originated in the poultry.

What are the risks of eating rotten chicken?

Consuming old chicken can lead to food poisoning and other food-related illnesses.

Chicken may be infected with harmful germs such as Campylobacter, Salmonella, and others, making it a major source of foodborne illness.

When you properly prepare a chicken, you may kill any bacteria that could be lurking in there.

However, you should still avoid preparing and consuming old chicken. Food poisoning can be caused by ingesting toxins generated by bacteria, and while re-heating or boiling can kill surface germs, this doesn’t always remove all of them.

Extremely high temperature, shivering, vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, bloody diarrhea, and dehydration are only some of the painful and sometimes life-threatening symptoms of food poisoning.

In extreme circumstances, food poisoning can be fatal and necessitate hospitalization.

Do not consume the chicken if you think it may be ruined. Chicken that smells or looks spoiled should be thrown out immediately.

How to store chicken in the fridge?

The chicken may be kept fresh in the fridge for up to five days if stored in an airtight Ziploc bag or plastic wrap and then placed in a container. You may use any kind of airtight container.

Put the container in the fridge’s rear corner and seal it airtight. The coldest section of the fridge is towards the rear. Each time the fridge door is opened and closed, warm air is allowed in. This is why the front of the fridge is usually the warmest part of the appliance.

Less liquid will spill out of the chicken if you store it on a plate with a lip. Cleaning dirty, juicy chicken juice out from the fridge is the very last thing anyone wants to be doing.

When working with raw chicken, there are few regulations that should never be broken.

Raw chicken should not be left out for longer than two hours at room temperature.

Any leftover raw chicken should be stored right away.

Time spent at room temperature increases the likelihood that germs may grow on raw chicken.

If you have touched raw meat, you must always wash your hands and the surfaces they have touched.

Raw chicken may be kept in the refrigerator or frozen. It’s safe to store in the refrigerator if you plan on eating it later that day or the next. If it’s going to be around for too long, you might as well put it in the freezer.


In this brief article, we answered the question, “How long can chicken stay in the fridge?”


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