Rice has been a staple food for many cultures for centuries. It’s a versatile food that can be used as a side dish or the centerpiece of a meal. But, most people end up cooking too much rice or buying too much for their needs. So, how long does rice last in the fridge? Let’s find out in this handy guide.
Why Does Rice Need to Be Stored Properly?
Rice is a grain, and like all grains, it has a shelf-life. Rice contains oils that can go rancid if not stored properly. Additionally, rice is a starch that can attract bacteria such as Bacillus cereus if left unrefrigerated for an extended period.
How Long Does Cooked Rice Last in the Fridge?
Cooked rice must be stored in the refrigerator within two hours of cooking. Properly stored, cooked rice can last for up to four to six days in the fridge. If you plan to keep it longer, freeze it instead. When reheating cooked rice, ensure the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C) to kill any bacteria and prevent foodborne illness.
How Long Does Uncooked Rice Last in the Fridge?
Uncooked rice can be stored in the refrigerator for up to six months. However, it is essential to store it in an airtight container to prevent the rice from absorbing any odors or moisture. Remember to label the container with the date of purchase or the date you stored it in your fridge.
Can You Freeze Rice?
Rice can be frozen to prolong its shelf-life. Follow these steps to freeze cooked rice:
- Cool rice entirely.
- Portion rice into airtight containers or zip-top bags. Label it with the date and contents.
- Store it in the freezer.
Cooked rice can last for up to six months when stored in the freezer. You can take it out and reheat it whenever you need it. Don’t freeze uncooked rice as the moisture content in the freezer can hurt its quality.
How to Store Rice Properly?
Proper storage of rice is essential to prevent spoilage and contamination. Here’s how you can store rice properly:
- Choose an airtight container that’s big enough to hold the rice without compressing it.
- Label the container with the type of rice, date of purchase, or the date you stored it in the fridge. This makes it easier to keep track of the shelf-life of the rice.
- Store it in a cool and dry place, away from direct sunlight, heat, or moisture. You can store it in the pantry, cupboard, or fridge.
How to Tell If Rice Has Gone Bad?
The easiest way to tell if your stored rice has gone bad is to use your senses. Here are some signs to look out for:
- Sour or unusual smell
- Mold or discoloration
- Unusual texture or stickiness
If you detect any of these signs, discard the rice, as it can lead to foodborne illness if eaten.
Proper storage is essential to extend the shelf-life of rice. Cooked rice stored in the fridge can last for up to four to six days, while uncooked rice in the fridge can last for up to six months if stored correctly. Keep the rice in airtight containers and store them in a cool, dry, and dark place. If you detect any signs of spoilage, discard the rice. In the end, this guide should have helped answer most of your questions regarding how long rice lasts in the fridge.
Most Common Questions and Their Answers
- 1. How can I make sure the rice stays fresh in the fridge?
- Transfer the rice to an airtight container and label the container with the date and filling. Store the container in the fridge, and it should retain its quality for up to six days.
- 2. Can I consume rice if it’s well within the expiration date?
- Yes, you can. It’s safe to consume rice up to the expiration date or within four to six days after cooking it, as long as it’s stored properly in the fridge.
- 3. How do I reheat rice from the fridge?
- It’s best to warm rice on the stovetop. Place it in a pot, add some water, cover it and heat it up until it’s hot. Another alternative is to reheat it in the microwave, where you place it in a microwave-safe container and heat it for two minutes on high power.
- Still Tasty. (n.d.). Rice, cooked. StillTasty.com. Retrieved July 8, 2021, from https://www.stilltasty.com/Fooditems/index/18506.
- Still Tasty. (n.d.). Rice, uncooked. StillTasty.com. Retrieved July 8, 2021, from https://www.stilltasty.com/Fooditems/index/18540.