In this article, we will answer the question “How long can uncooked meatloaf stay in the fridge?”, and how to freeze meatloaf?
How long can uncooked meatloaf stay in the fridge?
Uncooked meatloaf lasts 1-2 days in the fridge.
Can you make meatloaf with raw eggs the day before baking?
Yes, you can make meatloaf with raw eggs the day before baking. You simply have to keep in mind some precautionary steps to ensure food safety and quality.
The first step is thawing your meat. The safest way to thaw meat is in the fridge and not on the counter. The cleanliness and hygiene of the utensils such as the cutting board and the knife play a crucial role in the safety of the end product.
Use the freshest possible eggs for meatloaf. Make sure the eggs are without any cracks. Always wash your hands before or after handling raw meat or poultry products.
Store the prepared meatloaf overnight in the fridge at 40℉ or below. Bake the meatloaf at 350℉. The safe internal temperature of the meatloaf is 160℉. Use a thermometer to gauge the temperature of the meatloaf.
Baking the meatloaf using raw eggs may not sit well with some people. Such people are categorized as the immunocompromised group and include children, the elderly, pregnant women, and those with low immunity like HIV patients.
To avoid foodborne illness if you are catering to such people, use pasteurized eggs instead of fresh eggs.
There are countless variations in the meatloaf recipe. However, the classic method is to mix ground beef, pork, or turkey with dry bread crumbs, crackers, or oatmeal in a 1:1 ratio.
Ingredients like milk, eggs, are also added. Lastly, the loaf is topped with ketchup, mustard, or brown sugar.
The quality of the ingredients used for meatloaf determines the organoleptic properties of the finished product.
Ground meat contributes to a savory flavor while crumbs and crackers are important for the structural integrity of the meatloaf.
Seasonings enhance flavor while the egg proteins bind with the starch, keeping the meatloaf moist.
How to freeze meatloaf?
- Let the meatloaf cool down before packing it away. Transfer the meatloaf to a disposable aluminum loaf pan, if you are storing it raw.
- Wrap the meatloaf in foil so that no part of the meatloaf is exposed.
- Transfer the foil-wrapped meatloaf to a gallon-size freezer bag. Squeeze out as much air as possible from the bag.
- Put a clear label on the bag and stick it in the freezer.
The safest way to thaw frozen meatloaf is to leave it overnight in the fridge. Baking meatloaf directly out of the freezer will take double the time it takes to bake thawed meatloaf. Insert a thermometer in the center of the meatloaf and make sure it reads 165℉
Baking frozen meatloaf
If you forgot to thaw your meatloaf in the fridge overnight, do not fret, we have got you covered. With few amendments in the cooking time, you can safely bake frozen meatloaf. Set the oven at the temperature as directed in the recipe card.
Then bake the meatloaf 1 1/2 to 2 longer than the time suggested in the recipe. A thermometer inserted into beef or poultry meatloaf should read as 165℉.
In the oven
Frozen and cooked meatloaf can be safely reheated in the oven or microwave. Simply take out the meatloaf from the storage bag and bake in the preheated oven at 350℉ for about 1 1/2 hours.
In the microwave
Take out the meatloaf from its storage bag and foil wrap. Place it on a microwave-safe dish or plate. Loosely cover the surface of the meatloaf with a damp paper towel.
Microwave the meatloaf at low power. Check the meatloaf after every 2 minutes. Heat until thoroughly warm.
How to use leftover meatloaf?
There are plenty of exciting ways to use leftover meatloaf. The easiest and most common method is to use the sliced meatloaf as sandwich meat or a patty melt. Make sure to warm the meatloaf over medium heat in the skillet or the microwave.
Alternatively, you can crumb the leftover meatloaf and put these crumbs to good use. Add these crumbs into ground beef dishes, chili, casseroles, or in a sauce for a unique texture and taste.
To make the meatloaf into a cold appetizer, cut it into small squares. Decorate these squares over the mustard-topped cocktail bread. Finish off with sliced olives of favorite condiment.
To make the meatloaf bread into a warm appetizer, place horseradish sauce, meatloaf, and grated cheese on top of toasted cocktail bread. Heat in the oven until the cheese bubbles.
In this article, we answered the question “How long can uncooked meatloaf stay in the fridge?”, and how to freeze meatloaf?