Fried Chicken > How long does fried chicken last in the fridge

How Long Does Fried Chicken Last in the Fridge?

Fried chicken is a delicious, crispy treat that most people love to indulge in every now and then. However, like any perishable food, it’s important to store fried chicken properly and be aware of how long it stays fresh and safe to eat.

How Long Does Fried Chicken Last in the Fridge?

Fried chicken can last 3-4 days in the fridge if stored properly. Here are some more details:

    • Whole fried chicken will stay fresh in the fridge for 3-4 days when sealed in an airtight container or bag.
    • Fried chicken pieces and boneless chicken parts like breasts, thighs, legs, etc. will also keep for 3-4 days when refrigerated.
    • Fried chicken tenders and nuggets will last about 3-4 days in the refrigerator.
    • Leftover fried chicken that has been previously refrigerated and reheated should only be kept for 3-4 days after reheating.

While it may technically last 5-6 days, the taste and texture of fried chicken really starts to decline after 3-4 days in the fridge. The breading gets soggy and the chicken itself dries out. So for best quality and food safety, it’s recommended to eat refrigerated fried chicken within 3-4 days, and no more than 5 days maximum.

Related post: How long do you cook fried chicken wings?

Proper storage like sealing in airtight containers helps maximize fridge life. But no matter what, fried chicken is at its peak freshness within the first 3-4 days after cooking. So plan to eat it within that timeframe or freeze for later. After 4-5 days, it’s best to discard and make a new batch. Following proper storage times will ensure you enjoy fried chicken at optimal quality.

How to Store Fried Chicken in the Fridge?

To maximize freshness and shelf life, here are some tips for storing fried chicken in the refrigerator:

    • Allow fried chicken to cool completely before refrigerating, usually within 2 hours after cooking. Putting hot fried chicken directly in the fridge can raise the temperature and spoil other foods.
    • Store fried chicken in a sealed container or bag, or wrap tightly in aluminum foil or plastic wrap. This prevents drying out and blocks contaminants.
    • Place fried chicken on a plate or in a container on a fridge shelf, not in the door where the temperature fluctuates.

Make sure your refrigerator is set to 40°F or below. This optimal cold temperature keeps fried chicken fresh longer.

Fried Chicken Fridge Life

With proper refrigeration, here is how long can fried chicken stay in the fridge:

    • Whole fried chicken: 3-4 days
    • Fried chicken pieces: 3-4 days
    • Fried chicken tenders/fingers: 3-4 days
    • Fried chicken leftovers: 3-4 days

The fridge life of fried chicken has more to do with quality over safety. Even when refrigerated and stored properly, the crispiness and texture of the breading will degrade over time. Fried chicken leftovers may become soggy.

While fried chicken can technically last 5-6 days in the refrigerator before becoming unsafe, the taste and texture quality will noticeably decline after 3-4 days. It’s best to eat refrigerated fried chicken within that 3-4 day window.

How to Tell If Fried Chicken Has Gone Bad?

Here are some signs that indicate fried chicken has spoiled and should be discarded:

    • Slimy or sticky texture
    • Discoloration and dull, gray flesh
    • Rancid or off smell
    • Mold growth
    • Dry, cracked breading

When in doubt, remember the old adage: “When in doubt, throw it out.” Don’t risk eating spoiled fried chicken.

So, How long does fried chicken stay in the fridge?

The bottom line is fried chicken tastes best and maintains peak quality for 3-4 days when properly stored in the refrigerator. Be sure to seal it in an airtight container and keep the fridge below 40°F. Discard fried chicken that smells bad or appears slimy, dull or moldy. Following fridge storage guidelines will ensure you can safely enjoy your fried chicken before it goes bad.

Is fried chicken still good after 5 days?

No, fried chicken is not recommended to eat after 5 days in the refrigerator. While it may not make you sick if properly stored, the quality of fried chicken markedly decreases after 5 days in the fridge.

The breading will become very soggy and the chicken itself will lose its juiciness. Fried chicken that is 5 days old will likely have an unappetizing texture and dull flavor. It’s best to consume any leftovers within 3-4 days for freshness. After 5 days, it’s better to be safe than sorry and discard the fried chicken.

Is fried chicken good after 7 days?

Absolutely not. Fried chicken that has been refrigerated for 7 days should be thrown out. At this point, it is likely to be spoiled, slimy and potentially unsafe to eat. The long fridge time dries out the breading and causes the chicken meat itself to deteriorate.

Any fried chicken stored for a whole week in the fridge will have an unappealing color and smell rancid. The texture will be completely soggy and stale. It is not worth the risk to eat fried chicken after it has been refrigerated for 7+ days.

Can you eat 4 day old fried chicken?

It’s not recommended. While 4 day old fried chicken may still be safe to eat if it was stored properly, the quality will be poor. The breading will lose its crispness and become soggy. The chicken will be drier and chewier.

Any juices or marinades will have dried out, leaving the chicken flavor quite bland. You’re better off not taking the chance, as 4 day old fried chicken in the fridge will likely disappoint. It’s best to enjoy fried chicken leftovers within 2-3 days.

How long can fried chicken last in the fridge if sealed properly?

Properly stored in a sealed container or bag, fried chicken will stay fresh in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. After that, quality and texture declines noticeably.

Can you eat fried chicken after 5 days in the fridge?

It’s not recommended. Fried chicken that is 5 days old will likely be soggy and have an off texture and flavor, even if it hasn’t yet spoiled. Best to eat it within 3-4 days.


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