How to store

Here at Wholesale Angel we believe in informing and guiding our customers on how to store food safely.

Please find below a list of guidelines for food storage with credits mentioned below. However, this is just a guide, please always note the expiration or best before dates on your food products.

Power Outages

Without power a full upright chest freezer or refrigerator freezer, will keep food frozenabout two days, if you do not open the lid. If the freezer is only half-full, it will keep forone day. If the power will be off for an extended period, transport food to freezerswhere there is electricity or use block or dry ice. Handle dry ice according toinstructions. Do not touch or breathe fumes.

Without power, a refrigerator will keep food cool for four to six hours, depending on thekitchen temperature. Use block or dry ice to keep food cold for long periods.

When the electricity returns, if ice crystals are present in food or the food feelsrefrigerator-cold, it can be refrozen, but there may be a loss of quality in colour, texture,flavour, and nutrient content. Any thawed food that has risen above room temperatureand remained there for two hours or more should be discarded. Foods with a strangecolour or odours should be discarded.

IF IN DOUBT, THROW IT OUT!

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Butter or margarine 1-3 months 6-9 months
Buttermilk 1-2 weeks Freezes poorly
Cheese spread, opened 2 weeks Freezes poorly
Condensed milk, opened 3-5 days 1 month
Cottage or farmer's cheese 1 week Freezes poorly
Cream, half and half 3-4 days 4 months
Cream cheese 2 weeks Freezes poorly
Evaporated milk, opened 3-5 days Freezes poorly
Fluid milk 5-7 days after sell-by date 1-3 months
Hard cheese 6 months unopened 6 months
3-4 weeks, opened
Ice cream and sherbet Do not refrigerate 2 months
Nonfat Dry Milk (NFDM) 5-6 months 10-12 months
Processed cheese 3-4 weeks 4 months
Pudding 2 days after opening Freezes poorly
Reconstituted NFDM 3-5 days Freezes poorly
Sour cream 7-21 days Freezes poorly
Whipped cream 2-3 hours 1 month
Whipping cream 10 days 2 months
Yogurt 1 week after sell-by date 1-2 months

Eggs

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Fresh in shell 3-5 weeks Freeze poorly
Raw yolks, whites 2-4 days 1 year
Liquid pasteurized eggs, egg substitutes 10 days (unopened) 1 year (unopened)
3 days (opened) Freeze poorly
Hard cooked 1 week Freeze poorly

Meat Products

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Roasts and steaks 3-5 days 6-12 months
Chops 3-5 days 4-6 months
Ground and stew meats 1-2 days 3-4 months
Bacon 1 week 1 month
Canned ham 6-9 months (unopened) Freezes poorly
3-5 months (opened) 1-2 months
Corned beef, in pouch 5-7 days 1 month, drained
Ham, slices (fully cooked) 3-4 days 1-2 months
Ham, half (fully cooked) 3-5 days 1-2 months
Ham, whole (fully cooked) 1 week 1-2 months
Hotdogs 2 weeks (unopened) 1-2 months
1 week (opened) 1-2 months
Sausage 1-2 days 1-2 months
Smoked breakfast links, patties 7 days 1-2 months
Organ meats 1-2 days 3-4 months
Lunch meats 2 weeks (unopened) 1-2 months
3-5 days (opened) 1-2 months
Vacuum-packed dinners with USDA seal 2 weeks (unopened) Do not freeze
Cooked meats, casseroles, soups, stews 3-4 days 2-3 months
Gravy and meat broth 1-2 days 2-3 months

Poultry Products

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Chicken or turkey, whole 1-2 days 1 year
Chicken or turkey, pieces 1-2 days 9 months
Ground poultry and giblets 1-2 days 3-4 months
Duck, goose, game birds 1-2 days 9 months
Fried or boiled chicken 3-4 days 4 months
Cooked poultry casseroles 3-4 days 4-6 months
Cooked poultry with broth or gravy 1-2 days 6 months
Nuggets or patties 1-2 days 1-3 months

Fish and Shellfish

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Lean Fish ' cod, flounder, haddock, halibut, pollack, ocean perch, rock fish, sea trout, sole 1-2 days 6 months
Fatty fish ' bluefish, mackerel, mullet, salmon, smelt, swordfish, tuna 1-2 days 2-3 months
Cooked fish 3-4 days 4-6 months
Smoked fish, vacuum packaged 14 days or date on package 2 months
Surimi 2 weeks 9 months
Breaded fish Do not refrigerate 3 months
Shrimp 1-2 days 3-6 months
Scallops 1-2 days 3-6 months
Crayfish 1-2 days 3-6 months
Squid 1-2 days 3-6 months
Clams 1-2 days (shucked) 3-6 months
2-3 days (live) 2-3 months
Mussels 1-2 days (shucked) 3-6 months
2-3 days (live) 2-3 months
Oysters 1-2 days (shucked) 3-6 months
2-3 days (live) 2-3 months
Lobster 1-2 days (live) 2-3 months
Crab 1-2 days (in shell) 2-3 months
Cooked shellfish 3-4 days 3 months

Fruits

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Apples 1 month 8-12 months
Apricots 3-5 days 8-12 months
Avocados 5 days 8-12 months
Bananas 5 days at room temperature Freeze poorly
Berries 2-3 days 8-12 months
Cherries 2-3 days 8-12 months
Cranberries 1 week 8-12 months
Grapes 5 days 10-12 months
Guavas 1-2 days 8-12 months
Kiwis 6-8 days 4-6 months
Lemons, limes, oranges, grapefruit 2 weeks 4-6 months
Mangos Ripen at room temperature 8-12 months
Melons 1 week 8-12 months
Nectarines 5 days 8-12 months
Papayas Ripen at room temperature 8-12 months
Peaches 2-3 days 8-12 months
Pears 5 days 8-12 months
Pineapples 5-7 days 4-6 months
Plantains Ripen at room temperature 8-12 months
Plums 5 days 8-12 months
Rhubarb 1 week 8-12 months
Canned fruits 2-4 days (opened) 2-3 months
Frozen juice concentrate Do not refrigerate 2 years
Frozen juice reconstituted 6 days 6-12 months

Vegetables

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Artichokes 2-3 days Freeze poorly
Asparagus 2-3 days 8-12 months
Beets 2 weeks 8-12 months
Broccoli 3-5 days 8-12 months
Brussels sprouts 3-5 days 8-12 months
Cabbage 1 week 8-12 months
Carrots 2 weeks 8-12 months
Cauliflower 1 week 8-12 months
Celery 1 week 8-12 months
Corn, in husks 1-2 days 8-12 months
Cucumbers 1 week 8-12 months
Eggplant 2-3 days 8-12 months
Green beans 1-2 weeks 8-12 months
Greens 3-5 days 8-12 months
Jicama 2-3 weeks 8-12 months
Kohlrabi 1 week 8-12 months
Lettuce and salad greens 3-5 days Freeze poorly
Lima beans 3-5 days 8-12 months
Mushrooms 1-2 days 8-12 months
Okra 3-5 days 8-12 months
Onions, green 3-5 days Freeze poorly
Parsley 2-3 days 3-4 months
Peas 3-5 days 8-12 months
Peppers 1 week 8-12 months
Radishes 2 weeks Freeze poorly
Squash, winter Store in a dry place 8-12 months
Squash, summer 3-5 days 8-12 months
Tomatoes 1 week 8-12 months
Yuca 1-2 days 8-12 months
Zucchini 3-5 days 8-12 months
Frozen vegetables Do not refrigerate 8 months
Canned vegetables 1-4 days (opened) 2-3 months

Baked Products

Refrigerated storage of breads promotes staleness. Store breads at room temperaturefor 3 to 7 days unless otherwise indicated.

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Bread, yeast Room temperature 4-6 months
Biscuits Room temperature 2-3 months
Muffins Room temperature 2-3 months
Quick breads Room temperature 2-3 months
Pancakes and waffles Room temperature 1-2 months
Rolls, yeast Room temperature 2-3 months
Refrigerated biscuits Use-by date Do not freeze

Cakes and Cookies

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Angel 1-3 days at room temperature 2 months
Chiffon and sponge 1-3 days at room temperature 2 months
Cheesecake 3-7 days 2-3 months
Fruitcake 6-8 months 1 year
Pound 3-5 days at room temperature 6 months
Iced layer cake 1-3 days at room temperature 6 months
Baked cookies 5-7 days at room temperature 4-6 months
Unbaked cookie dough Use-by date 2 months

Pastries and Pies

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Danish and doughnuts 1-3 days at room temperature 3 months
Chiffon pie 2-3 days 1 month
Fruit pie 2-3 days 1 year
Mincemeat pie 2-3 days 4-8 months
Pumpkin pie 2-3 days 1 month
Unbaked fruit pie Do not refrigerate 8 months

Baby Food

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Expressed breast milk 3-5 days 3 months
Formula mixed with water 2 days DO NOT FREEZE
Strained fruits and vegetables 2-3 days 6-8 months
Strained meat and eggs 1 day 1-2 months
Strained meat and vegetablecombination 1-2 days 1-2 months
Homemade baby foods 1-2 days 1-2 months

Miscellaneous

Food ProductRefrigerator StorageFreezer Storage
Fresh Pasta 1 week 1 month
Mayonnaise 2 months Freeze poorly
Nuts 6 months 1 year
Sandwiches 1-2 days 1 week
Tofu 1 week 1 month
Coffee and tea 4-6 weeks 1 year
Peanut butter 6-8 months 6-8 months
Catsup, chili, cocktail sauce 6 months (opened) Freezes poorly
Mustard 6-8 months 8-12 months
Coconut, shredded, opened 8 months 1 year
Honey, jams, jellies, syrup 6-8 months (opened) Freezes poorly
Bottled salad dressing 3 months Freezes poorly
Vegetable shortening 6-9 months Freezes poorly

Canned Goods

Food ProductShelf Life
High acid canned foods and juices including tomatoes, grapefruit, apple products, mixed fruit, berries, pickles, sauerkraut, and vinegar-based products 1 year
Low acid canned foods including meat and poultry products, vegetable soups (not tomato), all vegetables 2-5 years
Home-canned products, all types 1 year

Dry Good Shelf Storage

StaplesShelf Life
Baking powder and soda 18 months
Barley 2 years
Bread crumbs 6 months
Bulgar 5-6 months
Cereal, ready-to-eat 2-3 months (opened)
6-12 months (unopened)
Cereal, ready-to-cook 6 months
Chocolate, baking 6-12 months
Cornstarch 18 months
Flour, bleached 6-8 months
Flour, whole wheat 6-8 months
Honey and syrup 1 year
Noodles, egg 6 months
Noodles, plain 1-2 years
Olive oil 6 months
Pasta 2 years
Rice 2 years
Rice, brown or wild 6 months
Sugar, brown 4 months
Sugar, granulated 2 years +
Sugar, powdered 18 months
Pasta 2 years
Wheat germ 8-12 months (unopened)
Yeast, dry Expiration date

References

-Arizona Department of Health Services (2005), Safe Food Storage Times and Temperatures.
-National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (2002), Be Cool-Chill Out! Refrigerate Promptly.
-United States Department of Agriculture (2001), Cold Storage Chart.
Clip art Microsoft® 2007.
Sandra Bastin, PhD, RD, LD, CCE
Extension Food and Nutrition Specialist
May 1998; Revised July 2007
Copyright © 2007 for materials developed by University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension. This publication may be reproduced in portions or its
entirety for educational or nonprofit purposes only.