How long can vacuum-sealed country ham last?

In this short article, we will provide an answer to the question “how long can vacuum-sealed country ham last?” and its preparations, purchasing, and storage practices.

How long can vacuum-sealed country ham last?

When vacuum packaged, ham maintains its freshness for about two weeks after being cooked. An expiration date is almost always printed on the label of the product. While the ham should be kept refrigerated beyond that date, that is all there is to it.

Fresh ham, cured ham, and cured-and-smoked ham are all options, as well as a variety of other products. These vegetables are available in a variety of preparations, including raw or cooked, as well as individually wrapped packages, canned cans, and country-style variations. 


When purchasing a ham, be sure to thoroughly read the packaging instructions. In addition to indicating whether the ham has been cured or smoked, the label will state if the ham is “fully cooked” and should be kept in the refrigerator or freezer. It is planned to include the term “fresh” in the product name of uncured ham. If the ham does not seem to be ready to eat, a prominent statement on the label panel will draw attention to the fact that it must be cooked further, such as “cook thoroughly.” Additionally, cooking instructions must be included on the label.


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. All cured and fresh hams should be cooked to an internal temperature of at least 160 degrees Fahrenheit before serving or eating them. Hams that have been fully cooked may be eaten cold or reheated to 140° F.


Refrigerate hams that have been wrapped in plastic or vacuum-packed. A ham wrapped in plastic wrap will keep for approximately a week in the refrigerator. Ham that has been vacuum-packed should be used within one week of the “use by” or “sell by” date on the packaging. 

Hams that have been wrapped in plastic or vacuum-packed may be used to store frozen hams. To preserve the texture and flavor of the ham when freezing, wrap it tightly in an extra layer of freezer paper or plastic and eat it within two months. 

Canned hams that are labeled “keep refrigerated” need refrigeration and have a shelf life of six to nine months if they are not opened before they expire. Maintain the refrigerator temperature after opening and consume the ham within 3 to 5 days. Examine the car for bulges, cracks, dents, or rust, as well as any signs of liquid leakage or leaking fluid. It is not advised to freeze ham in a can. 


Type of HamRefrigerateFreeze
Fresh (uncured) ham, uncooked3 to 5 days6 months
Fresh (uncured) Ham, cooked3 to 4 days3 to 4 months
Cured Ham, cook-before-eating; uncooked5 to 7 days or “use-by” date*3 to 4 months
Cured Ham, cook-before-eating; after consumer cooks it3 to 5 days1 to 2 months

What is the best way to tell whether a country ham is bad?

This is not a perfect test, but it is typically the most accurate in determining whether or not your ham has gone bad. Poor ham is distinguished by two characteristics: dull, slimy flesh and an unpleasant scent. Ham loses its pink color and develops a grey tinge as it ages, indicating that it has deteriorated.

Once the ham has been opened, how long can it be kept in the refrigerator?

Immediately after opening, wrap the leftover ham deli meat in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store it in airtight containers. A ham deli meat package that has not been opened may be maintained in the refrigerator for up to 7 days if stored correctly.

What exactly happened to my ham that caused it to become slimy and mushy?

Two different variables contribute to slimy meat. One is completely risk-free. To begin, it is necessary to utilize meats that have been industrially cured or brined, such as ham, turkey, or roast beef, since the oily sheen is created by juice seeping out and congealing over time.

What happens if you eat a ham that has gone off the shelf?

Even though it is a recipe for food disease, to the untrained eye the ham seems to be in perfect condition. Staph food poisoning is severe, and you may vomit within 30 minutes of being ill. If you are otherwise healthy, healing will typically take a few days to complete. This is not a toy for children under the age of eighteen.

Other FAQs about Ham that you may be interested in.

Is ham safe to eat without cooking?

Is prosciutto safe to eat without cooking?

How long can a cooked ham stay in the fridge?


In this short article, we provided an answer to the question “how long can vacuum-sealed country ham last?” and its preparations, purchasing, and storage practices.


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