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How Lengthy Does Meal Prep Final In The Fridge


We’ve all had ready meals to vanish into the again of the fridge for a lot too lengthy. 

Have you ever ever opened a meal prep container that’s been hanging out at the back of the fridge for who is aware of how lengthy and stated to your self, “I’m positive it’s nonetheless good.” 

Or perhaps you’re extra of a “higher secure than sorry” form of individual and toss all the pieces after a day or two.

Whichever aspect of warning you fall on, in the event you crack open a container and the meals is slimy, smelly, or moldy, it’s positive to hit the trash. So while you wish to save money and time with meal prep meals, the considered throwing away spoiled meals generally is a main hang-up to getting began.

Meals security is vital – ain’t no person desires meals poisoning! 

However there is a solution to meal prep that provides you the comfort of a fast balanced meal with the boldness that your meals continues to be fit for human consumption.

Under you’ll discover a information for making meal prep that lasts per week or extra.


In keeping with the USDA, most meals lasts safely within the fridge for about 4 days. Some meals can last more relying on the components and storage container. Meals saved within the freezer typically final three to 6 months.


Brief reply: it relies upon. 

It is best to really feel pretty assured that your meal prep will last as long as 4 days, however after that meals security will be questionable.

Listed here are just a few components that influence how lengthy you may safely retailer meals within the fridge:

  • Citric Acid. Sauces that include citric acid (suppose oranges, lemons, and limes) last more for the reason that citric acid works as a preservative.
  • Temperature. Verify the thermostat of your fridge – meals lasts longer when saved nearer to 30 levels Fahrenheit as a substitute of 40 levels Fahrenheit.
  • Components. Some meals appeal to micro organism quicker than others (rice and quinoa final a few day longer than cooked pasta dishes), so utilizing meals with an extended shelf life may help your meal prep last more all through the week.
  • Storage container. A top quality, hermetic container protects your meals and helps it last more and style brisker.
  • Fridge capability. Filling your fridge to the max will increase its total temperature, so keep away from overstuffing your fridge to verify the meals stays cool sufficient to keep away from spoilage.

Most individuals will inform you to make a meal plan for 2 separate cooking days to cowl 7 days value of meals. We regularly suggest this as effectively. We normally prepare dinner half per week’s value of meals on Saturday and the opposite half on Wednesday. And that’s an effective way to handle your meal prep. 

However in the event you’re desirous to expertise the magic of cooking solely at some point per week, preserve studying – we’ve obtained an FMC meal prep hack for you! (And no… it doesn’t embody consuming the thriller meal from the again of the fridge. )


With regards to meals security, your first rule of thumb needs to be when doubtful, throw it out. For those who’re questioning whether or not or not one thing is fit for human consumption, it’s finest to keep away from the chance of meals poisoning. 

For a extra detailed information on meals spoilage, the FDA affords useful tricks to preserve you secure. Listed here are just a few to remember to your meal prep.

How It Smells

Our nostril will be the perfect information for detecting spoiled meals. In case your meals smells unhealthy or if it smells “off” it’s almost certainly rising micro organism that can make you sick. The meals ought to scent the identical as while you first cooked it. 

How It Seems to be

Coloration adjustments are an indication that your meals could also be spoiling. Produce (suppose lettuce and avocados) turns into brown and meat will get patches of grey as they go unhealthy. Not all spoiled meals adjustments shade, although. Meals filled with preservatives maintain their shade effectively, even after they’ve spoiled. So search for shade adjustments as a touch for recognizing spoiled meals, however don’t assume a meal is mechanically fit for human consumption simply because it’s held its shade.

How It Feels

If it smells regular and appears good however feels slimy, it’s nonetheless on its method out the door and needs to be tossed. Any main adjustments in texture are an indication that the meals has gone unhealthy.


This one is the best to identify. In case your meal is creating mildew, it’s time to throw it out. Consuming mildew could cause allergic reactions and respiratory issues. Even in the event you spent some huge cash making a meal, if it has developed mildew it’s not well worth the danger of great sickness to eat it.


All the time verify for mildew or scent, shade, or texture adjustments that will help you decide if a meals is fit for human consumption. However here’s a fast information on the shelf lifetime of your favourite meal preps that will help you decide in case your wholesome meal is not wholesome. 

Inexperienced Salads

Fridge: 3-4 days

Freezer: no

FMC Tip: preserve salad dressing separate till able to eat

In a single day Oats

Fridge: 4-5 days

Freezer: 3-4 months

FMC Tip: add chia seeds and dried fruit earlier than storage however add nuts, seeds, contemporary fruit, granola, and coconut flakes simply earlier than consuming

Rice and Grain Bowls

Fridge: 3-4 days

Freezer: 4-5 months

FMC Tip: batch prepare dinner rice and freeze particular person parts so that you at all times have a fast grain available

Sheet Pan Meals

Fridge: 3-4 days

Freezer: no

FMC Tip: when doable, reheat meals utilizing the oven or air fryer to get a crispier texture

Pasta Dishes

Fridge: 3-4 days

Freezer: 4-5 months

FMC Tip: barely undercook your pasta earlier than freezing to keep away from mushy pasta

Soup, Chili, and Stews

Fridge: 4-5 days

Freezer: 5-6 months

FMC Tip: lay freezer baggage on a sheet pan when freezing so that they flatten out for straightforward stacking

Baked Items

Fridge: 7 days

Freezer: 5-6 months

FMC Tip: wrap every merchandise individually in plastic wrap after which retailer in a freezer bag

Meals to Keep away from for Meal Prep

If you would like longer-lasting meal prep concepts, keep away from these meals and also you’ll get an extended shelf life out of your meals. 

  • Lotions: bitter cream, mayonnaise, yogurt, creamy soups, and creamy sauces 
  • Crunchy or Fried: meals with a crunchy texture are likely to get smooth and mushy in storage
  • Salads: lettuce and different salad components shouldn’t be frozen and usually solely final just a few days

A few of these components can result in quicker spoilage and a few simply don’t style pretty much as good after hanging out within the fridge or freezer. Whereas these meals could make nice short-term meal prep, select totally different meals for the meal plan you eat on the finish of every week.

Use the Proper Storage Container

Not all storage containers are created equally. A high-quality container will assist your meals keep contemporary for longer. 

Ideas for choosing a container:

  • When storing your meals, be sure that your containers are hermetic
  • For freezer storage, use freezer-safe containers. 
  • Take into account how your meals will probably be reheated and whether or not you want a microwave-safe container. 

Ideas for storage:

  • All the time go away additional area within the container when storing liquids – liquids broaden when frozen.
  • Totally cool meals earlier than inserting them within the fridge or freezer.
  • Preserve the freezer door closed for a number of hours to make sure the brand new meals freezes fully.


Are you prepared for an FMC hack that can get you 7 kinds of meals with at some point of cooking?

We use a mix of fridge and freezer meals to assist our meal prep final.

Right here’s what that appears like: 

Step 1: Batch prepare dinner a number of meals that freeze effectively and pop particular person parts into the freezer for long-term storage. You solely want to finish this step as soon as a month in the event you batch prepare dinner sufficient meals.

Step 2: Prepare dinner your meal prep for the primary 4 days of your week and retailer it within the fridge. 

Step 3: On the fourth day of the week, transfer your freezer meals for days 5-7 to the fridge to allow them to thaw. 

BAM! You’ve obtained a full week of meal prep in 1 day of cooking. 

Use the facility of the freezer to increase the lifetime of your meal prep. Check totally different meal prep recipes to see which holds up finest for freezer storage. A straightforward solution to inventory your freezer over time is to double a recipe and use half of it contemporary and retailer half within the freezer for later use. This helps add selection to your menu because you don’t must eat the double batch and may pull out a mixture of meals out of your freezer later.


How far forward are you able to retailer your meals? It relies upon. The kind of meals and site of storage influence how lengthy meals will final. Make a meal plan of about 4 days of secure storage within the fridge and about 4 months of secure storage within the freezer. Look ahead to adjustments (scent, shade, texture, and mildew) to your meal prep meals as an indication that it’s gone unhealthy. For those who’re not sure if meals has spoiled: when doubtful, throw it out. A mixture of fridge and freezer meal prep is the most secure solution to prep a complete week of cooking meals at one time.

For meal prep concepts to get you began, try our meal prep recipes right here


Hey, I am Kevin

My title is Kevin. My life modified after I realized that wholesome dwelling is a lifelong journey, primarily gained by having a well-balanced weight-reduction plan and sustaining an energetic life-style.

By experimenting within the kitchen and sharing my meals on Tumblr, I discovered wholesome consuming just isn’t boring! By making just a few changes to my favourite meals, I may design a weight-reduction plan that would assist me obtain my wellness targets whereas satisfying my need for BANGIN meals! 😅 Now I attempt to assist folks all over the world notice that very same degree of freedom in consuming no matter price range. Welcome, let’s #DemocratizeWellness collectively!



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