How long can meatloaf be kept in the refrigerator without going bad? This is a common question among those who have stumbled across a forgotten container at the back of their refrigerator and dubiously prodded the contents.
Although estimating the shelf life of homemade food isn't always simple, having a general concept might help you avoid wasting food.
How long can meatloaf be stored in the refrigerator? Although some individuals claim that meatloaf may be kept in the refrigerator for much longer than this, the majority of safe guidelines recommend not keeping it there for more than three to four days.
If you intend to consume meatloaf that has passed this stage, take care to check it for mould before you eat it.
Cooked meatloaf should be refrigerated in shallow airtight containers or tightly wrapped in heavy-duty aluminium foil or plastic wrap to extend its shelf life while maintaining its quality and safety. Meatloaf that has been cooked and properly stored will keep in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.
How Long Should Meatloaf Last in the Fridge?
Meatloaf typically keeps in the refrigerator for three to four days at the least. This is a good general rule of thumb to follow, but if your components are fresh, you may discover that it is safe to consume for longer than this.
If you are susceptible to foodborne infections, specifically, avoid consuming meatloaf that is older than this.
If you want your meatloaf to stay properly, place it in the refrigerator as soon as possible since the sooner you can do it, the better. Meatloaf will spoil much more quickly if it is left out on the counter than if it is refrigerated as soon as possible.
Therefore, after the meatloaf is finished cooking, it is a good idea to let it cool. It will cool down more quickly if you put it somewhere chilly that is not the refrigerator and tip it out of the container it came in and onto a cold dish.
The meatloaf must come to room temperature before being placed in the refrigerator. Always make sure that food is sufficiently cold before placing it in the refrigerator since doing so can compromise your other food and perhaps raise your risk of food poisoning.
How Can You Tell If Meatloaf Has Gone Bad?
Take the meatloaf out of the fridge and look at the surface to see whether it has gone rotten.
Check the meatloaf carefully before you eat it to reduce the chance that it has gone rotten.
It could also be beneficial to microwave the meatloaf before smelling it. Heating will aid in the scent's release and make it simpler to determine if this is uncommon.
The texture of the meatloaf may also be able to tell you if it has gone rotten. It is no longer safe to consume meatloaf if it has become slimy or soft.
This occurs when the meat is unquestionably rotten since germs have started disintegrating it.
If you believe the meatloaf has gone bad, avoid tasting it. Mouldy meatloaf should be thrown away since it won't be safe to eat even after thorough heating.
What Happens If You Eat Bad Meatloaf?
If you consume spoiled meatloaf, you run the risk of contracting 2food poisoning. This might cause a wide variety of symptoms that vary in severity.
Vomiting, nausea, stomach pains, fever, and 3diarrhoea are among the typical symptoms. Some individuals with really severe instances of food poisoning end up in hospitals.
To reduce the hazards, it's vital to handle any meals with prudence, but notably, dishes based on meat. If you fear food has gone bad, don't consume it, and avoid leaving food in conditions where it is more prone to spoil.
Do You Need to Store Meatloaf in the Fridge?
Yes, meatloaf must be kept in the refrigerator. It must be stored below 40 degrees F to be safe, like practically any other cooked meal.
When meatloaf is left out at room temperature, bacteria will flourish since they can reproduce much more rapidly over 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
Throw away any meatloaf that has been at room temperature for more than two hours. Do not even think about eating meatloaf that you unintentionally left out overnight or all day.
It might get you severely ill since it contains dangerously high quantities of microorganisms.
Though the meatloaf has been left out, you shouldn't consume it even if it seems and smells OK.
The food must be thrown out since there are too many germs present and it may take some time for the warning signals of mould specks and a terrible smell to appear.
Can You Reheat Meatloaf?
Meatloaf that has been properly preserved may be reheated once, but no more. Some individuals do reheat it more than once, but the Food Standards Agency advises against doing so since it is usually seen to be less safe.
Before reheating any meatloaf, it's ideal to decant it into a smaller container or onto a platter. This will enable you to simply reheat what you really need and not the full dish.
Reheating the meatloaf until it is very hot rather than merely warm might lessen the possibility of contracting any foodborne illnesses.
If you do want to reheat meatloaf more than once, be careful to fully chill it each time and keep it refrigerated at all times. If you don't want to reheat the meatloaf, you may safely eat it cold.
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If stored in the refrigerator, meatloaf keeps for about four days, although you should try to finish it off before then.
Although some individuals do it, keeping meatloaf for a longer period of time is not advised and should be done with care. Consider freezing meatloaf if you know you won't eat it all right away.
Additional resources and citations
- 2food poisoning