Pizza is one of those fast foods that we frequently order too much of, especially when each person requests a different flavor or topping and we wind up with too many pizzas! This is why we often have a lot of leftover pizza in the fridge despite our valiant attempts to consume them all at once. You might be wondering how long pizza keeps in the refrigerator. So, for how much longer is it still ok to eat? This article is here to help you out.
If your Pizza Has Been Left Out at Room Temperature:
Unfortunately, pizza that has been left out for longer than two hours should not be consumed. Do not take a chance storing your fresh pizza if you leave it sitting in the box for several hours before opting to store it for another day. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) states that all perishable foods, including pizza, should not be eaten the next day after spending the previous night at room temperature.
Whether there is meat on your pizza or not, this rule still applies. You run a higher risk of contracting food-borne illnesses if you leave your pizza out at room temperature. Therefore, the most important thing to take into account before opting to eat leftover pizza when determining how long you can safely store pizza in the fridge is how quickly it was placed inside after cooling to room temperature.
Therefore, if your pizza in fridge was chilled around the right time, you can keep it there for up to 3 to 4 days. If you wait any longer, bacteria could develop and cause food poisoning. In order to avoid any dangerous microorganisms that could cause a foodborne disease, this general rule of thumb is valid for the majority of perishable foods or cooked foods in addition to pizza leftovers. However, we advise using up the leftovers the next day or within 24 hours if your pizza dough in fridge is topped with something extremely perishable, as some toppings, like fish, are more likely to harbor hazardous bacteria.
Pizza in fridge typically stays for a few days, but after that, it is best to throw them out, especially if you notice a rotten smell, which is one of the first indications of rotten pizza dough in fridge. Discoloration and evidence of mold growth are some more spoiling indicators.
This is another solid indication that you should throw away the extra pizza in the fridge. Perishable foods kept at temperatures between 40 degrees Fahrenheit and 140 degrees Fahrenheit are said to be in the “danger zone,” according to the USDA. Every 20 minutes that a food is left out in the “risk zone,” the incidence of food-borne illnesses has the potential to quadruple.
Right Way of Storing Pizza in the Fridge:
Remove the pizza from the cardboard box and carefully wrap any leftover pieces in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to keep the pizza as fresh as possible. Alternately before chilling leftover pizza, place the slices or even the entire pizza dough in fridge in an airtight container or plastic bag. If adequately refrigerated within the recommended 2-hour window, leftover pizza dough in the fridge will keep for up to 4 days, according to the USDA’s food safety manual.
Storing Pizza in the Freezer:
If you recently had a pizza binge, you might not feel like eating pizza for the next matter of days. If that’s the case, frozen pizza leftovers are also an option. How can leftover pizza be frozen? It is easy! Your cold pizza can be wrapped in freezer wrap or placed inside freezer bags. It will keep for up to two months in the freezer with little risk of spoiling.
One of the greatest methods to keep cooked foods fresh is to freeze them, and with pizza, freezing helps to keep the crust crunchy and the toppings safe to eat for a longer period of time. The best course of action is to place the remaining pizza slices in an airtight container, wrap them in freezer wrap, or wrap them in aluminum foil. Pizza that is frozen will keep for two to three months.
You almost finished that extra-large pizza, but you did not, and you do not want to throw the leftovers away. Hence, you start to wonder, “How long is my leftover pizza good for?” at that point. All of us have been there. Perhaps though, a medium pizza typically suffices, we order a large one or even two because we are starving. And guess what? There are plenty of leftovers that we are left with. Fortunately for you, if you follow the appropriate procedures, keep your leftover pizza fresh. If you want to know the correct way of storing pizza, this article is for you.