How long does Raw Chicken Last in the Fridge?

Refrigerating foods are nothing new for most of us.  We refrigerate foods in order to maintain its freshness and quality.  Not only that, the fridge made our food safe to eat by preventing growth of bacteria.  However, each food has its own shelf life and it is important that we take that into consideration.

Just like any food or poultry, chicken too should be kept in the refrigerator.  How long it stays there depends whether it is raw or cooked chicken.  So how long does raw chicken last in the fridge?  Similar to cooked chicken, raw chicken also needs special safety precautions.

There are several factors that affect the freshness of uncooked chicken.  For one, the time when the chicken was slaughtered is utmost value.  If you purchase it close to the date it was slaughtered, the fresher the chicken is.  Another factor is how well your fridge works.  In order for it to be effective, the temperature should be at 400F or 60C at all times.  Lastly, the coldness of the chicken during transportation from the store must be considered too.

If you browse through the Internet for an answer on how long does raw chicken last in the fridge, you may get conflicting answers.  For a reliable answer, you can check out the FDA website.  According to the site, raw chicken usually lasts for 1-2 days in the fridge.  You should also place the chicken in the coldest part of the refrigerator for a better quality.  If it was not cooked within the time framed, store the chicken in the freezer.

Chicken can be frozen for up to one year, but its freshness may be affected.  For a longer shelf life, wrap the chicken with freezer paper, plastic wrapper, or place it in a freezer bag.

Once the chicken is thawed, it should be cooked as soon as possible.  If there will be some delay in cooking, store the chicken back in the fridge, and cook within 24 hours.  There are three methods in thawing raw chicken; in the microwave, in the refrigerator, or in cold water, but you need to change the water every 30 minutes.  Never let uncooked chicken stands on room temperature as this will promote bacterial growth.

Here are some helpful tips for lasting your raw chicken longer in the fridge:

–         Do not purchase when the chicken package have holes, tears or leaks

–         Read the ‘use by’ or ‘sell by’ date on the package

–         Get the chicken home and place in the fridge immediately

–         If after a day, the chicken smells bad, do not cook it anymore, instead, threw it away.

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