Are Your Leftovers Ok To Eat?
Jun 16, 2023
With inflation gripping food prices at a high these days, saving your leftover food for tomorrow’s breakfast or lunch is your best bet. Nevertheless, how long can they last and how safe are they to eat?
According to experts, food stored between 4C to 60C can lead food-borne pathogens to grow and multiply at a faster rate. This doesn’t always mean that the food is completely unsafe to eat. Instead, use your senses to indicate its safety;
Sight: See if there is any obvious discoloration or mold in the food. If you see even the tiniest bit, that’s your call to throw it out.
Smell: An offensive odor usually indicates microbial growth in the food which degrades it and risks your health.
Taste: Similar to its smell, if the food tastes foul or unlike how it is supposed to taste, microbial growth is likely to take over.
Generally, leftovers are safe to eat three to four days after cooking when stored properly. Here are some storing tips to ensure they are safe to consume for a much longer time.
Use glass, airtight containers. It keeps pathogens from seeping in and saves your time to identify them.
Cool food completely before storing them in the fridge. Trapped warmth collects moisture which can encourage microbial growth.
Storing certain foods in the freezer slows down microbial growth thus making them safer to eat for longer.
When reheating the food, keep them out of room temperature. To do this, dish out your leftover to reheat and store the rest back in the fridge immediately.