How long can cooked fish stay in the fridge?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “how long can cooked fish stay in the fridge” with an in-depth analysis of the shelf life of cooked fish. Moreover, we are going to discuss tips to properly store cooked fish.

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.

How long can cooked fish stay in the fridge?

Cooked fish can last for about 3-4 days when stored properly in the fridge at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit in an air-tight container or plastic zipper bag. 

Thus, the cold temperature of the fridge will decrease the rate of bacterial growth and will subsequently prolong the shelf life of your cooked fish.

The proper way to store your cooked fish in the fridge is to put it in the air-tight container or zip lock bag once you have cooled it thoroughly at room temperature. It is best practice to refrigerate the leftovers of your cooked fish within 2 hours after fish is being cooked. 

How long does cooked fish stay at room temperature?

Cooked fish lasts for about 2 hours when kept out at room temperature. 

You should discard the cooked fish that has been left in open for more than 2 hours as bacterial growth takes place at a faster pace between the temperature of 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit, therefore there are greater chances of the cooked fish being already contaminated with bacteria when left out for more than 2 hours.

Moreover, if the temperature of the surroundings is about 90 degrees Fahrenheit, then the process of spoilage takes place at a faster pace and it is recommended to discard cooked fish that is left out in the open for more than an hour at 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

How long does cooked fish last in the freezer?

Cooked fish if kept in an air-tight container or air-tight bag in the freezer can last for about 2-3 months provided that it was stored properly. 

Thus keeping the cooked fish in the freezer will increase its shelf life considerably owing to the cool temperature of the freezer that halts the bacterial growth on cooked fish.

It is worth mentioning that the figures mentioned above are the estimated shelf life of the cooked fish.

How to thaw frozen cooked fish properly?

You can thaw frozen cooked fish by leaving them in the fridge overnight. The cooked fish that you thaw in the fridge can stay there for 3-4 days before you decide to reheat and eat it.

But if you thaw your cooked fish in a bowl of cold water or the microwave, it is advised to consume it immediately after heating it till its internal temperature rises to 165 °F.

Can I refrigerate the reheated cooked fish?

So once you have reheated the cooked fish, you should never refrigerate it. As when you reheat the cooked fish, its temperature rises more than 40 degrees Fahrenheit and we know that bacteria grows at a faster rate between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. So the bacteria will find their way to your cooked fish and you should never refrigerate the reheated cooked fish.

You can read how to make crispy baked fish here.

Other FAQs about Fish which you may be interested in.

Can you eat a jellyfish?

Can you cook fish sticks in the microwave?

Tips to properly store cooked fish

  1. You should always store your cooked fish at 40°F or below. Bacterial growth takes place at a faster pace between the temperature of 40°F and 140°F, therefore it is always advised to store your cooked fish at a lower temperature.
  1. It is a good practice to store cooked fish on one of the shelves of the refrigerator rather than the door as there is a lot of temperature fluctuation at the door of the fridge that can mess up the quality of cooked fish.
  1. One thing to keep in mind is to let your cooked fish cool thoroughly before putting it in the container or the zip-lock bag. If you put steaming hot cooked fish in these airtight bags or containers, the moisture will build up inside them which can provide suitable conditions for the bacteria to grow.
  1. You can further prolong the shelf life of the cooked fish by wrapping it in the heavy-duty aluminum foil or plastic freezer bag and storing it in the freezer.
  1. You can also opt for vacuum sealing at home that can prolong the shelf life of a cooked fish. It involves the process of putting the cooked fish in a plastic zipper bag, removing air from it, and almost sealing the bag with a little space left while lowering it into water. Afterward, press out the bubbles from the bag starting from the bottom of the bag and once you reach the sealed end, you should press the seal closed. A vacuum sealer pump can also be used for this purpose.
  1. Thaw the cooked fish properly before reheating it. If you are thawing your cooked fish by keeping it in the refrigerator then you can reheat and utilize it within 3-4 days but if you are directly thawing and reheating it in the microwave it is recommended to consume it immediately.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question “how long can cooked fish stay in the fridge” with an in-depth analysis of the shelf life of cooked fish. Moreover, we discussed tips to properly store cooked fish.

Citations

https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/How-long-can-you-keep-cooked-fish-in-the-refrigerator#:~:text=Cooked%20fish%20and%20other%20seafood,refrigerator%203%20to%204%20days.
https://www.awgprivatechefs.com/post/how-long-should-i-keep-cooked-fish-in-the-fridge
https://stilltasty.com/fooditems/index/18244

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.