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 mentioned to your self, “I’m positive it’s nonetheless good.” 

Or possibly you’re extra of a “higher secure than sorry” type of particular person and toss every little thing after a day or two.

Whichever aspect of warning you fall on, in case you crack open a container and the meals is slimy, pungent, 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 necessary – ain’t no person needs meals poisoning! 

However there is a method to meal prep that offers you the comfort of a fast balanced meal with the arrogance that your meals remains to be fit for human consumption.

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


In line with the USDA, most meals lasts safely within the fridge for about 4 days. Some meals can last more relying on the elements and storage container. Meals saved within the freezer usually 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 a couple of elements that affect how lengthy you’ll be able to safely retailer meals within the fridge:

  • Citric Acid. Sauces that include citric acid (assume oranges, lemons, and limes) last more for the reason that citric acid works as a preservative.
  • Temperature. Examine the thermostat of your fridge – meals lasts longer when saved nearer to 30 levels Fahrenheit as an alternative of 40 levels Fahrenheit.
  • Substances. Some meals entice 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 high 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 ensure 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 frequently 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 a good way to handle your meal prep. 

However in case you’re eager to expertise the magic of cooking solely sooner or later per week, maintain studying – we’ve obtained an FMC meal prep hack for you! (And no… it doesn’t embrace consuming the thriller meal from the again of the fridge. )


In relation to meals security, your first rule of thumb needs to be when doubtful, throw it out. In the event you’re questioning whether or not or not one thing is fit for human consumption, it’s finest to keep away from the danger of meals poisoning. 

For a extra detailed information on meals spoilage, the FDA provides useful tricks to maintain you secure. Listed here are a couple of to remember on your meal prep.

How It Smells

Our nostril will be the very best information for detecting spoiled meals. In case your meals smells unhealthy or if it smells “off” it’s most probably rising micro organism that may make you sick. The meals ought to odor the identical as while you first cooked it. 

How It Seems to be

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

How It Feels

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


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


All the time verify for mildew or odor, colour, or texture modifications 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 now not wholesome. 

Inexperienced Salads

Fridge: 3-4 days

Freezer: no

FMC Tip: maintain 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, recent 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 potential, 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 luggage on a sheet pan when freezing so that they flatten out for simple 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 inclined to get mushy and mushy in storage
  • Salads: lettuce and different salad elements shouldn’t be frozen and sometimes solely final a couple of days

A few of these elements 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 recent for longer. 

Suggestions for choosing a container:

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

Suggestions for storage:

  • All the time go away additional house within the container when storing liquids – liquids develop when frozen.
  • Absolutely cool meals earlier than inserting them within the fridge or freezer.
  • Maintain 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 may get you 7 sorts of meals with sooner or later of cooking?

We use a mixture 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 case you batch prepare dinner sufficient meals.

Step 2: Cook 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. Take a look at totally different meal prep recipes to see which holds up finest for freezer storage. A straightforward method to inventory your freezer over time is to double a recipe and use half of it recent and retailer half within the freezer for later use. This helps add selection to your menu because you don’t have to eat the double batch all of sudden 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 affect 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 modifications (odor, colour, texture, and mildew) to your meal prep meals as an indication that it’s gone unhealthy. In the event you’re not sure if meals has spoiled: when doubtful, throw it out. A mixture of fridge and freezer meal prep is the most secure method to prep a whole 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 way of life.

By experimenting within the kitchen and sharing my meals on Tumblr, I discovered wholesome consuming shouldn’t be boring! And by making a couple of changes, I may design a weight-reduction plan that might assist me obtain my private health targets whereas satisfying my want for BANGIN meals! 😅. Our our bodies are constructed within the kitchen and sculpted within the gymnasium. #DemocratizeWellness