How Long Does Rice Last In The Fridge?

Last Updated on November 3, 2022 by E.Pery

Rice is one of the pantry staples that have the most extended shelf life. Most households like preparing it because it’s not only easy to cook, but it’s also a good source of carbohydrates.

Although uncooked rice can stay for ages without going bad, cooked rice has an expiry date. Furthermore, its moist texture also makes it prone to harmful bacteria.

The USDA recommends disposing of leftover rice in the fridge after three to four days. Dispose of leftover rice in the freezer after three to four months.

Cooked rice stays longer when stored in the refrigerator than when left at room temperature. But how long does cooked rice safely last in the fridge? Read on to learn.

How Long Does Rice Last In The Fridge?
How Long Does Rice Last In The Fridge?

How long can you eat rice after it’s been in the fridge?

If stored properly, cooked white rice can stay in the fridge for up to 5 days. Cooked brown rice has a shorter shelf life. It can only stay in the fridge for 3-4 days.

Storing cooked rice in the refrigerator maximizes the shelf life of the rice by keeping it safe from airborne bacteria that cause spoilage.

As a rule of thumb, you should store cooked white rice in the freezer if you intend to use it five days after cooking it. This rule applies to many short, medium, and long-grain rice varieties, including basmati, wild rice, jasmine rice, and arborio rice.

This ensures that the rice is safe to eat when you are ready to use it.

How long does cooked rice last?

The shelf life of cooked rice is approximately one month in the refrigerator.

To increase the shelf life of cooked rice, refrigerate it immediately after cooking. Store at temperatures below 40 degrees Fahrenheit in a tightly sealed container. Cooked rice should be used within one month of being prepared.

How long does cooked rice last after being frozen?

Cooked rice that has been frozen can be expected to last one month in the freezer and up to two months past its cook date in the refrigerator.

How long does cooked rice last in the pantry?

Cooked rice will generally keep for about six months when stored in a cool, dark place away from moisture and heat.

What causes cooked rice to go bad?

The most common cause of spoiled food is a foodborne illness, which is caused by bacteria that multiply rapidly at temperatures between 40°F and 140°F (4°C and 60°C). Bacteria are more likely to multiply in perishable food if it is left out of refrigeration longer than 2 hours.

In addition to bacteria, mold growth can also occur when storing cooked rice improperly.

Can you freeze leftover cooked rice?

Yes, but freezing leftover cooked rice is not recommended because it dries out and becomes hard when reheated.

How long-cooked rice last at different temperatures?

Rice is a staple food, and it is often consumed in large quantities at every meal. In many countries, including the United States, rice is second only to corn as the most widely produced grain crop.

The shelf life of cooked rice may vary from two to seven days depending on several factors.

The first factor that affects how long cooked rice lasts is the temperature at which you store it. The cooler you store cooked rice after cooking, the better its quality will be and the longer it will last. For best results, store cooked rice in an airtight container in your refrigerator for up to three days.

If you do not have access to a refrigerator or if you are going camping or hiking and want to bring some along, storing your cooked rice in an airtight container outside of packaging can help keep it fresh for up to two days.

how to store cooked rice?

Cooked rice has a lot of moisture which makes it a potential breeding place for bacteria. It is important to refrigerate or freeze leftover rice right away if you intend to use it later. If leftover rice stays at room temperature for over two hours, it is advisable to toss it in the bins because it’s likely contaminated.

Cool rice quickly after cooking it by spreading it over a baking sheet. If the room temperature is high, consider putting the baking tray with the rice in the fridge to lower the temperature.

Once it has cooled, put the cooked rice in a resealable plastic bag or an airtight container, label it with the expected expiry date and place it on the uppermost shelf.

Keeping leftovers on the top shelf allows you to keep track of and avoid food wastage through spoilage.

The USDA recommends cooking rice to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit for at least 15 seconds to kill any harmful bacteria present on the outside of the grain.

It’s important to remember that there are many different types of rice, so cooking times may vary slightly depending on how your particular brand cooks best.

How can you tell if cooked rice has spoiled?

Some people make the rookie mistake of reheating and cooling cooked rice several times. However, this is wrong and could cause severe food poisoning. Rice contains a spore-like bacterium called Bacillus cereus. This temperature change creates a suitable environment for this bacteria to grow in the rice, making it harmful to consume. 

It would be best if you never determined whether food has gone bad by tasting it. The best way to tell whether rice is safe for consumption is to test its smell, texture, and appearance.

  • Fresh rice is aromatic. So if your rice begins to give off a funky smell, it’s advisable to trash it. A foul odor may be a sign that the rice contains bacteria.
  • Freshly cooked rice is moist and sticky. When cooked rice is stored in the fridge longer than recommended, it loses its moisture content, dries up, crumbles, and becomes harsh. Although the smell of the rice may not have changed, it is advisable to toss such rice in the bins to avoid food poisoning.
  • When cooked rice stays too long in the refrigerator, bacteria grow because of its high moisture content. As the bacteria multiply, the fermentation process kicks, making the rice develops a slimy texture. This slimy texture should tell you that the rice has gone wrong and should be discarded the right way.

How long does uncooked rice last?

The shelf life of uncooked or dry rice varies with the type of rice. There are various types of rice. However, the main difference in rice in its shelf life is whether it is white or brown.

Brown and white rice have different degrees of moisture. Brown rice is neither milled nor polished. It, therefore, has a greater fat and oil content compared to white rice. This makes it go rancid faster than dry white rice.

Despite this difference, both types of rice are shelf-stable when kept dry. If you have plenty of dry rice, you don’t have to keep it in the fridge. You can safely store it at room temperature in the pantry.

Recommended reading: What Temperature Should A Refrigerator Be?
How Long Does Uncooked Rice Last?
Photo of Polina Tankilevitch from Pexels

However, brown rice stays fresh for three to six months since the date of manufacture, while white rice can stay up to 5 years without going bad.

You can increase the shelf life of your brown rice by keeping it in the freezer when frozen uncooked brown rice can stay fresh for up to 18 months, while white rice can last as long as 30 years.

You can also extend the shelf life of your brown rice by refrigerating it. Refrigerated brown rice stays fresh for up to 6 months.

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Classic symptoms of food poisoning

Some of the most common symptoms of eating spoilt rice include vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach aches. If you happen to experience food poisoning from spoilt rice consumption, you don’t need to go to the doctor right away.

You can drink plenty of water and then eat a couple of bananas to ease your stomach and bring it back to normalcy. If this does not work, you should seek medical attention right away.

You may also ask

How long does cilantro lime rice last in the fridge?

Refrigerated, cilantro lime rice will remain fresh for about 7 to 10 days.

Is cilantro lime rice safe to use after the best-by date?

Yes, provided it has been stored properly and kept in an airtight container.

How long does cooked rice last in the fridge?

If properly stored, cooked rice will last for three to five days in the refrigerator and up to two months in the freezer.
To prevent mold and other foodborne illnesses, it’s important to store cooked rice in an airtight container and keep it refrigerated until you’re ready to use it.
To freeze cooked rice, transfer the cooled rice into an airtight freezer-safe container or bag. Leave about 1/2-inch headspace at the top of the container or bag and seal tightly. Write the date on your container or bag with a permanent marker. Use within 2 months for best quality.

How long does dirty rice last in the fridge?

Dirty rice will last for about 3 to 4 days in the fridge.

How long can dirty rice be left out at room temperature?

Dirty rice should be refrigerated as soon as possible, but if you have to let it sit out for a period of time, it should be fine for up to 2 hours at room temperature.

How long does rice pudding last in the fridge?

Rice pudding is a dish that can be found in many cuisines around the world. It’s made from ground rice and milk or water, with sugar, flavoring, and sometimes egg added to it. The dish can be served hot or cold, sweetened or unsweetened, and plain or garnished with fruit. It is often served as a dessert but can also be eaten as a breakfast food or snack.
In general, rice pudding will last one to two days in the refrigerator.

How long does rice pudding last in the freezer?

Freezing rice pudding is not recommended since freezing tends to change the texture of the dish and makes it mushy when thawed. If you do freeze rice pudding, do not refreeze it once thawed. Instead, use it right away on its first day of thawing.

How long does rice pilaf last in the fridge?

The shelf life of this food depends on its preparation method and ingredients. Rice pilaf that has been cooked properly will last for about three days when stored in the refrigerator.

How long does Chinese fried rice last in the fridge?

Fried rice is a common dish that is used as an accompaniment to other dishes. It is also usually served as a meal in itself, especially for breakfast or lunch. While the dish can be eaten cold, it is more often served hot and freshly cooked.
Freshly prepared fried rice will last for about 3 days in the refrigerator when properly stored. The rice will begin to dry out after 2 days if you don’t cover it with plastic wrap or aluminum foil.
Refrigerated fried rice will keep for about 7 days when covered with a lid or wrapped tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. If you’re planning on storing fried rice longer than 1 week, then it’s best to freeze it instead of refrigerating it since there’s no way to know exactly how long it’s been sitting on your countertop!

How long does broccoli rice casserole last in the fridge?

As a general rule of thumb, it is best to store refrigerated leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days. You can freeze a casserole for up to 3 months. Before freezing, cool your casserole completely and then cover it with plastic wrap or foil. Make sure that you label and date your casserole before freezing it.
To thaw a frozen casserole, remove it from the freezer 1 hour prior to cooking and let it sit at room temperature until soft enough for you to cut it into portions. If you are making a broccoli rice casserole ahead of time, freeze it in individual containers so that each person can have their own portion of the dish when ready to heat it up.

How long does cooked Mexican rice last in the fridge?

Cooked rice has a shelf life of two days when stored in the refrigerator. If you don’t plan on using all of your cooked rice within that time frame, consider freezing some of it for later use. Rice freezes well and keeps its texture when thawed properly. The best way to store cooked rice is by placing it into an airtight container or resealable plastic bag with as much air removed as possible.

How long does cauliflower fried rice last in the fridge?

Perishable foods should be consumed within three to four days after opening or before the expiration date on the package (if there is one). Foods kept at room temperature have a greater risk of bacterial growth than those stored in the refrigerator or freezer because it’s easier for microorganisms to multiply at higher temperatures.