You are taking a meals storage container out from the again of the fridge, open, and sniff cautiously. Appears to odor OK, so it in all probability hasn’t gone unhealthy, proper? Not so quick. Simply because meals doesn’t odor spoiled doesn’t imply you’re protected from foodborne diseases.

Wait, what? In accordance the FDA, foodborne diseases are brought on by pathogenic micro organism—suppose: salmonella, E. coli—and people are completely different from the micro organism that spoil meals.

Common spoilage, if you’ll, is brought on by varied elements, together with publicity to gentle, oxygen, warmth, humidity, temperature, and microorganisms like non-pathogenic micro organism, molds, and yeast.

The very last thing anyone needs is to come back down with a fever, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdomen cramping. Fortunately, there’s a easy trick that can assist you keep away from driving the porcelain bus. The two-2-Four rule is a straightforward strategy to eat these leftovers safely.

To observe the 2-2-Four rule, refrigerate leftovers inside two hours of cooking, retailer meals in dishes not more than two inches deep, and eat all of it up inside 4 days. This minimizes the chance of a meals breeding pathogens as a result of it retains your leftovers out of the “hazard zone” (between 40 and 140 levels Fahrenheit, when micro organism can proliferate) and reduces the floor measurement these bugs can infect.

RELATED: Is It Ever OK to Eat Moldy Meals?

Storage ideas

Be certain your fridge is ready to 40 levels Fahrenheit or much less, and seal your leftovers tightly, in containers or hermetic packaging, to forestall the expansion of micro organism.

Can I freeze leftovers?

Sure! Simply be sure that your freezer is ready to zero levels Fahrenheit or much less. And needless to say when you thaw leftovers you’ve saved within the freezer, the bacterial development ramps up once more. In case your leftover steak was within the fridge for 2 days earlier than you froze it, you solely have one to 2 days after it’s thawed to soundly eat it.

Within the freezer, soups, stews, sauces, and cooked meat can last as long as three months. You may freeze your cooked poultry leftovers for as much as 4 months, whereas cooked fish leftovers can keep frozen for as much as six months.

RELATED: 14 Meals That Can Make You Sick

What about these brownies I simply baked?

Not like perishable leftovers, baked items will be saved at room temperature in an hermetic container for 5 to seven days, says Jen Pattap, proprietor of Piece of Love Pastries. If in case you have so many brownies week gained’t be sufficient time to get pleasure from all of your treats, wrap them tightly in plastic after which in a plastic bag, and retailer within the freezer. They need to be good for at the least six months, Pattap says.

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