How long can overnight oats stay in the fridge?

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

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

How long can overnight oats stay in the fridge?

Generally, overnight oats last for about 3-5 days if stored properly in the fridge all the time at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit in an air-tight container.

Overnight oats with some fruits added to them last for about 2 days when stored properly in the fridge at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. On the other hand, overnight oats made with yogurt last for about 7 days when stored in an air-tight container in the fridge.

Overnight oats made with milk last for about 3-5 days (depending mainly upon when the milk is going to expire).

So, you should always store your overnight oats at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below provided that you are going to eat them within a few days, or else it is better to freeze them. Bacterial growth takes place at a faster pace between the temperature of 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit, therefore it is always advised to store your overnight oats at a lower temperature to preserve their freshness for a long time.

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

How long can overnight oats last at room temperature?

Overnight oats last for about 2 hours when left out of the fridge at room temperature. 

You should discard the overnight oats that have 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 overnight oats 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 overnight oats that are left out in the open for more than an hour at 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

How long do overnight oats last in the freezer?

Properly stored overnight oats last for about 6 months in the freezer.

Thus, the shelf life of overnight oats increases owing to the cold temperature of the freezer that halts the microbial growth on it.

How to thaw frozen overnight oats?

When it comes to thawing overnight oats, there are a couple of ways to do so and you can choose any of them depending upon your choice.

In the fridge

The recommended way to thaw the frozen overnight oats is to leave them in the refrigerator overnight and let them thaw there. The overnight oats thawed this way can be kept in the fridge for a couple of days.

In a bowl of cold water

You can thaw the frozen overnight oats in a bowl of cold water but you should eat them immediately after thawing. 

At counter

If you are in a hurry you can also thaw your frozen overnight oats by leaving them at the counter but be cautious not to leave it for more than 2 hours and eat it as soon as it thaws. 

You can read how to make peanut butter overnight oats here.

Tips to properly store overnight oats

  1. You should always store your overnight oats 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 overnight oats at a lower temperature.
  1. You should store the overnight oats in an air-tight container or plastic zipper bag, to prevent them from picking up the smells of other food items present in the fridge. It is recommended to store overnight oats away from strong-smelling foods.
  1. It is a good practice to store overnight oats 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 overnight oats.

Different ways to spot bad overnight oats

Certain indicators point out bad overnight oats. So you can tell whether or not your overnight oats have gone bad by considering their appearance, color, and smell.

Appearance

If you spot mold or organic growth on your overnight oats then the best thing you can do is to toss out such overnight oats.

Moreover, if you see the mold, it is recommended never to smell the overnight oats as molds can produce mycotoxins in it and if you smell such overnight oats the mycotoxins can enter your body via inhalation where they can disrupt your natural microflora and can weaken your immune system.

Smell

The presence of a sour or foul smell is an indication that overnight oats have gone bad and you should discard them.

Color

Discoloration in overnight oats is the indication that they are past their prime time. 

Conclusion

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

Citations

https://cookieandkate.com/overnight-oats-recipe/#:~:text=Overnight%20oats%20are%20a%20simple,5%20days%20in%20the%20refrigerator.
https://www.thekitchn.com/this-is-how-long-overnight-oats-will-last-in-the-fridge-248415
https://foodsguy.com/how-long-do-overnight-oats-last/

Mahnoor Asghar is a Clinical Nutritionist with a bachelor's degree in Nutrition and Dietetics. She is compassionate and dedicated to playing her part in the well-being of the masses. She wants to play a fruitful role in creating nutrition and health-related awareness among the general public. Additionally, she has a keen eye for detail and loves to create content related to food, nutrition, health, and wellness.