How long can I keep cooked pork in the fridge?

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

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

How long can I keep cooked pork in the fridge?

Cooked pork 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 pork.

The proper way to store your cooked pork 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 pork within 2 hours after the pork is being cooked. 

How long does cooked pork stay at room temperature?

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

You should discard the cooked pork 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 pork 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 pork that is left out in the open for more than an hour at 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

How long does cooked pork last in the freezer?

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

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

How to thaw frozen cooked pork properly?

You can thaw frozen cooked pork by leaving them in the fridge overnight. The cooked pork 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 pork 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.

Other FAQs about Pork which you may be interested in.

Can you cook pork and beef together?

Can you cook pork and chicken together?

How long are cooked pork ribs good for in the fridge?

Can I refrigerate the reheated cooked pork?

So once you have reheated the cooked pork, you should never refrigerate it. As when you reheat the cooked pork, 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 pork and you should never refrigerate the reheated cooked pork.

You can read nutrition facts and the health benefits of pork here.

Tips to properly store cooked pork

  1. You should always store your cooked pork 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 pork at a lower temperature.
  1. It is a good practice to store cooked pork 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 pork.
  1. One thing to keep in mind is to let your cooked pork cool thoroughly before putting it in the container or the zip-lock bag. If you put steaming hot cooked pork 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 pork 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 cooked pork. It involves the process of putting the cooked pork 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 pork properly before reheating it. If you are thawing your cooked pork 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 I keep cooked pork in the fridge” with an in-depth analysis of the shelf life of cooked pork. Moreover, we discussed tips to properly store cooked pork.

Citations

https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/How-long-can-you-keep-cooked-pork
https://www.foodsafety.gov/food-safety-charts/cold-food-storage-charts
https://www.stilltasty.com/Fooditems/index/18059

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.