How long after cooking chicken can you eat it?

In this brief guide, we will answer the question “how long after cooking the chicken can you eat it?” with an in-depth analysis of how long after cooking chicken can we eat it. Moreover, we will also discuss the optimum storage period of cooked chicken and the signs of spoilage after the cooked chicken has gone bad.

How long after cooking chicken can you eat it?

After the chicken is cooked, if kept at room temperature, you should eat it within 2 hours. Cooked chicken should sit out at room temperature for no more than two hours before being refrigerated to slow down bacteria growth. Once stored in the fridge, leftovers should be eaten up within three to four days because bacteria can still grow even at refrigerator temperatures.

According to the USDA, the cooked chicken will last three to four days in the refrigerator, and two to three months in the freezer. Eating cooked chicken after this point can result in foodborne illness even at refrigerated temperatures, bacteria can still grow.

Can you eat cooked chicken after 5 days?

The USDA says that chicken is safe for up to four days in the fridge before you need to throw it out. If you’re on day five, it’s time to discard the chicken.

Can you eat chicken 7 days after cooking?

If stored properly such as in a ziplock storage bag or sealed container, the USDA says that cooked chicken can last three to four days in the refrigerator. And that goes for any type of cooked chicken either store-bought, homemade, or restaurant leftovers. Then freeze the chicken for up to four months. You can consume chicken after 7 days of being cooked if the chicken has been frozen.

Can you eat chicken 24 hours after cooking?

Cooked chicken that has been sitting out for longer than 2 hours (or 1 hour above 90° F) should be discarded. The reason is that bacteria grow rapidly when cooked chicken is kept at temperatures between 40° F and 140° F. To prevent foodborne illness, try to refrigerate the cooked chicken as soon as you can.

Can you eat 10-day old chicken?

Raw chicken lasts in the fridge for 1–2 days, while cooked chicken lasts 3–4 days. To detect if the chicken has gone bad, check the expiry date and look for signs of spoilage like changes in smell, texture, and color. Avoid eating spoiled chicken, as it can cause food poisoning — even if you cook it thoroughly.

How can you tell if the cooked chicken is bad?

Freshly cooked chicken will have a brown or white color to the meat, and, over time, as it spoils, the cooked chicken looks grey or green-grey. Other signs of spoiled cooked chicken are a bad, offensive smell, a chicken that’s slimy after cooking, and mold or white spots on cooked chicken.

How long does cooked chicken last in the fridge uncovered?

Covered or uncovered chicken, both have a shelf life of 3 to 4 days when stored in the fridge. 

Can you eat day-old chicken left out?

Perishable food (like chicken and other meats) should be tossed if left out at room temperature for more than two hours (much less if in a warm room). If the food is not kept warm in chafing dishes or stored on ice, when served cold, it is no longer safe to eat after two hours of sitting on the table.

Can you get salmonella from cooked chicken?

Although less common, you could also get salmonella from cooked meat if you don’t reheat it to the proper temperature before serving leftovers. It may have become contaminated in between when it finished cooking and when you serve it again, so it is best to take precautions and fully reheat your leftovers.

What happens if you eat cooked meat left out overnight?

If perishable food such as meat or poultry has been left out at room temperature overnight (more than two hours) it may not be safe. Discard it, even though it may look and smell good. The danger zone is the temperature range between 40 °F and 140 °F in which bacteria can grow rapidly.

How long after eating bad chicken do you get sick?

The bacteria are usually found on raw or undercooked meat (particularly poultry), unpasteurized milk, and untreated water. The incubation period, which is the time between eating contaminated food and the start of symptoms, for food poisoning caused by campylobacter is usually between two and five days.

For how many days is rotisserie chicken good?

Cut rotisserie chicken into several pieces and refrigerate it in a covered container for up to four days or freeze it. Frozen leftovers are safe indefinitely but best eaten within four months, after which moisture and flavor are compromised.

Can you eat week-old grilled chicken?

Yes, you can eat it, but it probably won’t taste nearly as good as it did when it was freshly cooked. The quality of chicken deteriorates quite rapidly, usually within a couple of days. You should only eat week-old grilled chicken if it has been properly stored.

Does cooked chicken smell when it’s bad?

People’s sense of smell can vary, which means not everyone will notice a change in the smell of chicken. So, look out for other signs of spoilage as well. Chicken that has gone bad will usually have a sour or sulfur-like smell. Most often, fresh chicken has no smell at all.

Other FAQs about Chicken that you may be interested in.

How to fry boiled chicken?

How to fry chicken in olive oil?

How to fry chicken quarters?


In this brief guide, we have answered the question “how long after cooking the chicken can you eat it?” with an in-depth analysis of how long after cooking chicken can we eat it. Moreover, we have also discussed the optimum storage period of cooked chicken and the signs of spoilage after the cooked chicken has gone bad.


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.