Food Storage - How long can you keep...

MACARONI AND CHEESE - COOKED, LEFTOVERS

Refrigerator
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3-5 days
Freezer
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1-2 months

Tips

  • How long does cooked macaroni and cheese last in the fridge or freezer? The precise answer to that question depends to a large extent on storage conditions - refrigerate macaroni and cheese within two hours of cooking.
  • To maximize the shelf life of cooked macaroni and cheese for safety and quality, refrigerate the macaroni and cheese in shallow airtight containers.
  • Properly stored, cooked macaroni and cheese will last for 3 to 5 days in the refrigerator.
  • To further extend the shelf life of cooked macaroni and cheese, freeze it; freeze in covered airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags.
  • Cooked macaroni and cheese dishes containing sauce freeze best; cooked macaroni noodles frozen without sauce may become overly mushy when thawed.
  • How long does cooked macaroni and cheese last in the freezer? Properly stored, it will maintain best quality for about 1 to 2 months, but will remain safe beyond that time.
  • The freezer time shown is for best quality only - cooked macaroni and cheese that has been kept constantly frozen at 0℉ will keep safe indefinitely.
  • How long does cooked macaroni and cheese last after being frozen and thawed? Cooked macaroni and cheese that has been thawed in the fridge can be kept for an additional 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator before cooking; macaroni and cheese that was thawed in the microwave or in cold water should be eaten immediately.
  • How long does cooked macaroni and cheese last at room temperature? Bacteria grow rapidly at temperatures between 40 °F and 140 °F; cooked macaroni and cheese should be discarded if left for more than 2 hours at room temperature.
  • How to tell if cooked macaroni and cheese is bad? If cooked macaroni and cheese develops an off odor, flavor or appearance, or if mold appears, it should be discarded.

Sources: For details about data sources used for food storage information, please click here

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