In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “how long does butternut squash last” with an in-depth analysis of the shelf life of butternut squash in different mediums. Moreover, we are going to discuss the proper way to store butternut squash.
So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.
How long does butternut squash last?
Whole butternut squash
Whole butternut squash lasts for about 1-2 months if stored properly in a dry, cool, and dark place. Thus you can easily store your whole butternut squash in the cool, dry, and dark corner of the pantry away from direct sunlight and heat.
It is worth mentioning that you should store your butternut squash in a well-ventilated place. Moreover, you should never store your butternut squash in a humid place, or else the excessive moisture content will mess up the quality and freshness of the butternut squash.
Sliced/chopped butternut squash
When you cut or chop the whole butternut squash, its shelf life decreases owing to the now exposed surface of the cut butternut squash. Moreover, as the cut butternut squash has a larger surface area therefore it provides more room for bacteria to grow on it.
Therefore cut butternut squash lasts for about 5-6 days in the fridge when stored properly at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
Cooked butternut squash
When it comes to the cooked butternut squash, it lasts for about 4-5 days when stored in the fridge in an air-tight container or plastic zipper bag at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
On the other hand, cooked butternut squash lasts for about 2 hours at room temperature.
Bacteria grow at a faster pace between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit therefore it is recommended to discard the cooked butternut squash that is left in open for more than 2 hours as there is a great chance that the bacteria would have already spread over it and would have spoiled it.
If the outside temperature is 90 degrees Fahrenheit then cooked butternut squash lasts for only about an hour when left out in the open.
It is worth mentioning that these figures are just the estimated shelf life of butternut squash and butternut squash can even last for more than this, provided that it was stored properly.
You can tread how to cook butternut squash here.
Can I store butternut squash in the freezer?
Yes, you can store butternut squash in the freezer and like other vegetables, it is good practice to cook butternut squash before freezing it.
So the process is pretty simple, all you gotta do is to cook butternut squash and let it cool. Once it gets cool take a plastic freezer bag and put the cooked butternut squash inside and afterward store it in the freezer.
Cooked butternut squash lasts for about 10-12 months if stored properly in the freezer.
How to thaw frozen butternut squash?
You can let the frozen cooked butternut squash thaw by leaving it in the fridge overnight. The butternut squash thawed this way can stay for about 3-4 days in the fridge.
If you are thawing your butternut squash in a bowl of cold water or the microwave then it is recommended to reheat and use the butternut squash immediately.
How to tell if butternut squash has gone bad?
There are a couple of indications that point out that your butternut squash has gone bad. You should consider the appearance and texture of the butternut squash to give a final verdict about whether or not butternut squash has gone bad.
If you spot a mold or some organic growth on your cooked butternut squash, then the best thing you can do in this scenario is to get rid of the whole butternut squash.
It is worth mentioning that fresh raw butternut squash is firm to touch. So if you feel something slimy, gooey, or if the butternut squash has mushy, or soft spots then it is an indication of bad butternut squash. Now if the soft spots are small, you can just cut them off but if they are too large then it is better to discard the whole butternut squash.
How to store butternut squash properly?
- Do not wash or cut butternut squash until you are ready to cook it.
- Fresh raw whole butternut squash can be stored in a cool, dry, and dark corner of the pantry.
- You should store the whole fresh butternut squash in a well-ventilated place.
- Moreover, you should not store your butternut squash in a humid or warm environment as the moisture content can mess up the quality of the butternut squash and along with warm temperature, it also provides a suitable environment for molds to grow.
- In the case of cooked butternut squash, always let it cool before storing it in the air-tight container or plastic zipper bag. If you store hot cooked butternut squash in the plastic zipper bag or container moisture will build up inside it that provides a suitable environment for bacteria to grow.
- You should not leave your cut butternut squash or cooked butternut squash for more than 2 hours at room temperature.
In this brief guide, we answered the question “how long does butternut squash last” with an in-depth analysis of the shelf life of butternut squash in different mediums. Moreover, we discussed the proper way to store butternut squash.