How long can steak stay in the fridge?

In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “How long can steak stay in the fridge?”. We will also talk about how to store steak in the fridge, how to know if the steak has gone bad, and how long can steak stay in the freezer.

How long can steak stay in the fridge? 

According to the USDA, steak can last in the fridge for a maximum of 3-5 days depending on the way you have stored the steak. The temperature of the fridge needs to be 40 F or below as this temperature range is where the bacteria and pathogens would not multiply and keep the steak safe for consumption.

The steak should not be kept at room temperature if you are not planning to cook it straight away as the bacteria and other pathogens can grow and multiply at temperatures between 40 F and 140 F.

How to store steak in the fridge properly?

Steaks can be stored in the fridge and prolonged their shelflife to eat at a later date. One should be mindful to store the steak properly to avoid it from going rancid.

The steak needs to be wrapped with plastic wrap, packed in a ziplock bag, or placed in an airtight container to restrict it from coming in contact with cold air which will destroy the texture and flavor of the steak.

Can steak stay at room temperature? 

The temperature at room temperature is a breeding ground for harmful bacteria such as salmonella and E.coli which finds steak and meat as their hosts. Leaving steak at room temperature will contaminate the steak and if consumed, will cause digestive disorders and food poisoning which can show the symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, abdominal pain, headaches, and stomach cramps.

How long can steak stay in the freezer?

Steaks can be stored in the freezer to eat at a later date. The steaks can stay in the freezer for at least 4-12 months time if stored properly.

The steaks should be wrapped with plastic wrap and double wrapped with aluminum foil to avoid any freezer burns. The steak can also be placed in freezer bags and again wrapped with aluminum foil to prolong its shelf life.

It is to be noted that the steak that has been frozen will lose a bit of its taste and texture along with time and won’t be as the fresh steak.

How to thaw frozen steak? 

Thawing or defrosting the steak for cooking is as important as storing them properly. If the meat is not thawed properly, then the steak will go to waste as improper thawing practices can damage the integrity of the meat.

Thawing steak can be done by placing the steak on a plate and removing the steak from the plastic ad aluminum wraps in the fridge overnight. This slow defrosting will allow the steak to come back to its original state and is the safest form as there will be no contamination from bacteria and other microbes.

The other technique to thaw a frozen steak is to put the wrapped meat under running water for some time till it is defrosted. If you defrost the meat using this method, make sure the steak is cooked immediately.

Using the microwave to haw the steak is also a method but when microwaving the outer sides of the steak will already start the cooking process and will not be as good as the other thawing methods.

How to know if the steak has gone bad?

To know if the steak has gone bad, a simple smell, look and feel test will do the job.

Smell 

When the steaks go bad, they lose their meaty smell and end up smelling sour and rancid. If the steak does not smell as it is supposed to then it is safe to say that it has gone bad.

Texture 

The texture and color of the steak that has gone bad will start to develop a greenish, bluish hue to the meat. Also, there will few decolored spots as well. If the meat is off for a few days, molds can also start to appear.

Feel 

The steak that has gone bad will have a slimy and sticky kind of feel to it. The meat won’t feel soft and tender, it will be hard to touch and would look rainy and slimy.

Conclusion 

In this brief guide, we answered the query, “How long can steak stay in the fridge?”. We also talked about how to store steak in the fridge, how to know if the steak has gone bad, and how long can steak stay in the freezer.

I hope you find this blog useful. If you have any questions, please let us know.

References 

https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/How-long-can-I-keep-meat-in-the-refrigerator#:~:text=Beef%2C%20veal%2C%20lamb%20and%20pork,refrigerator%203%20to%204%20days.

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