How long to keep a cooked meal in the refrigerator?

On average, a dish will keep refrigerated for up to 5 days. After this period, it may no longer be suitable for consumption. This shelf life remains variable depending on what the airtight box or covered plate contains. Yes, as a reminder, the first rule before placing leftovers or food in the refrigerator: cover it. For freshly cooked dishes, refrigerate them for up to two hours after cooking to limit the proliferation of bacteria.

Each dish has its own shelf life

Leftovers or dishes containing meat, fish or vegetables can be kept for up to 3 days if covered and refrigerated. All meals based on dairy products, being more “sensitive” to bacteria and being able to solidify quickly, should be kept for 24 hours. If you have prepared a quiche, tart or chicken with cream, do not wait too long, otherwise, at the latest 48 hours after cooking. 48 hours also regarding the maximum time to consume cooked eggs (hard-boiled, soft-boiled or poached). Of course, if the dish has an unusual smell or appearance despite the expiration date not having passed, avoid consuming it.

Dishes to eat right away

To maintain their best taste quality, avoid refrigerating fried, scrambled or omelette eggs. They might become rubbery. If left in the refrigerator, fries soften, lose their crispness and salads, at least if they have already been mixed with a vinaigrette sauce, lose their freshness.

Freezing: to extend the shelf life of the dish

By freezing a dish, you extend its shelf life by 3 months! Make a note of the date you placed it in the freezer and that's it. Of course, to defrost it, transfer it to the refrigerator and only reheat it once it is thoroughly defrosted.

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