Storing Chicken In The Fridge |

Storing Chicken In The Fridge

If you're a busy home cook, your chicken may be stashed in the freezer. But have you ever wondered how long does chicken last before it goes bad? Or whether you should thaw it in the fridge or on the counter? Get the food safety facts about storing raw or cooked chicken in the fridge or freezer.

How Long Can Frozen Chicken Stay In The Fridge?

When it comes to storing frozen chicken, there are a few factors to consider so that it will last in the fridge. Some general guidelines:

  • If you plan to be cooking the chicken within a few days, you can store it in the refrigerator for up to three days.

  • If you need to store for longer than three days, it's best to freeze chicken.

  • Thawed chicken should be cooked or consumed within one to two days.

These guidelines are for raw chicken only. So to answer, how long can chicken stay in the fridge? If you have cooked chicken to store in the refrigerator, it should be safe to eat up three to four days.

Top Rated Refrigerators:

GALANZ - 3-Door Bottom Mount Refrigerator 12 CF - Ice Maker, 4" Wide (GLR12BS2K16)

FORTE - Counter Depth French Door Refrigerator 250 Series - 4 Door, 33 Inch, Stainless (FFD18ESC250SS)

SUMMIT - 24" Wide Bottom Freezer Refrigerator (FFBF181ES)


chicken, raw, salted - via

How To Thaw Frozen Chicken

If you are planning ahead, the best way to thaw chicken before you cook is in the fridge. Here's how in a few simple steps:

  1. Remove the from the freezer and place chicken in the refrigerator.

  2. Allow the chicken to thaw slowly in the refrigerator. This can take anywhere from one to three days, depending on the size.

  3. Once the chicken is fully thawed, it's ready for cooking.

Thawing chicken in the refrigerator is the safest method, as it allows the chicken to thaw slowly and evenly. This helps to prevent the growth of bacteria, which can cause food poisoning when you eat.

Top Rated Freezers:

Forte - Upright Freezer 33 Inch - Stainless Steel, Freestanding, Left Hinge (F21UFLESSS)

Summit - 24" Wide Built-In All-Freezer (SCFF53BXCSSHH)

Vitara - Upright Freezer 14 Cu. Ft. - White (VLUF1400EWE)

 Raw chicken thawing in the oven. - via

How To Thaw Chicken Fast

  1. Cold Water Thawing: Place in a watertight plastic bag and submerge in cold water. Change the water every 30 minutes to ensure it stays cold to prevent bacterial growth. Do not use hot water.

  2. Microwave Thawing: Follow the manufacturer's instructions. This is less consistent, so be sure to check regularly to ensure you thaw chicken all the way through.

  3. Oven Thawing: Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit and place on a baking sheet. Expect to fully defrosted in about 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the size.

 Raw chicken on kitchen table. - via

How Long Does Raw Chicken Last In The Fridge?

  • The recommended refrigerated storage time is typically one to two days.

  • Store raw chicken (also ground chicken and whole raw chicken) in the coldest part of the refrigerator, usually at the bottom shelf or back where the temperature is most consistent.

  • Raw chicken can last by keeping in its original packaging or wrap it tightly in plastic, foil or freezer bags to prevent any leaks or contamination.

  • Do not leave out at room temperature for more than 2 hours, as bacteria can grow rapidly at warm temperatures.

  • Do not wash the chicken before storing it, as this can spread bacteria.

  • Avoid storing raw chicken next to cooked or ready-to-eat foods to prevent cross-contamination.

  • This can last in the freezer for up to 1 year to keep it still good, but be sure to wrap it tightly in plastic, aluminum foil, or freezer bag before freezing to prevent freezer burn.

Refrigerator with Freezer:

Crosley - French Door Refrigerator 24.7 Cu. Ft. - Stainless Steel (XNE25JSKSS)

Galanz - French Door Refrigerator - 16 CF (GLR16FWEE16)

Forte - French Door Refrigerator 450 Series - 36 Inch, Stainless Steel (FFD27ESSSS)

 Fried chicken in a serving dish. - via

How Long Does Cooked Chicken Last In The Fridge?

  • Cooked chicken should be stored properly in the fridge to stay good, at a temperature below 40°F to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

  • How long are chicken breasts good in the fridge? The answer to this important question, is that it can last 3-4 days in the fridge.

  • If you want to store chicken for a longer period of time, freeze it. The recommended storage time for cooked chicken in the freezer is 2-6 months.

  • To store food safely in the fridge or freezer, use an airtight container or wrap the chicken tightly in plastic wrap, in its original packaging, vacuum seal or aluminum foil to prevent contamination, freezer burn and reduce the chance of spoiled chicken a slimy texture.

  • Recommendations are to keep track of the shelf life by labeling the containers with the date of storage.

  • To help prevent the spread of bacteria, avoid storing cooked chicken with raw chicken or other raw meats in the fridge or freezer.

  • When defrosting cooked whole chicken, make sure to do so in the refrigerator or microwave instead of on the counter at room temperature to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

It is important to understand the proper storage of frozen food and fresh chicken in order to prevent foodborne illness. Always be sure not to purchase after the labeled grocery store sell by date. Frozen chicken can last in the fridge for up to 2 days, but it is important to thaw it safely. Cooked chicken should be stored properly in the fridge at a temperature below 40°F for a maximum of 3-4 days, or to freeze chicken for up to 2-6 months. Raw whole chickens should also not be refrigerated for more than 1-2 days, or in the freezer for more than 1 year. To ensure food safety storage of chicken, be sure to use separate cutting boards and utensils for raw or cooked chicken, and keep raw food away from other food.

For more home fridge information and the perfect place to discover your next refrigerator, be sure to follow us at With the right storage techniques, you can keep your chicken safely chilled and enjoy it with friends and family. So go ahead and cluck with joy!.