How long does Chicken Salad Last in Fridge: Do you have some leftover chicken in the refrigerator and you can’t decide what to do with it! You might feel like tossing in some extra ingredients into the chicken and make yourself a chicken salad but you stop in between… don’t know how long will that chicken salad last in the fridge.
To overcome this issue you can make yourself a chicken salad of fresh ingredients but are still confused that how long you should store it in the refrigerator.
Well, in this article we would tell you everything you need to know about the storage life of a chicken salad in the refrigerator.
A chicken salad normally lasts about 3-5 days in the refrigerator. However, there are certainly other factors that affect the storage life of chicken salads in the refrigerator such as the quality of ingredients, the salad storage container, how cold the fridge is, or the smell of the chicken.
How Long Does Chicken Salad Last in a Refrigerator
The Quality of Ingredients
If you have some leftover chicken and you’re using that to make chicken salad then the salad would probably stay fresh for 1-2 days as the chicken is already old.
Similarly, the ingredients used for the salad dressing matters as well. For example, if you’re using mayonnaise then the salad would remain fresh for at least 5 days.
However, if you’re using oil dressing like vinegar or apple cider products then the salad quality would remain good for 3-4 days maximum.
Moreover, if you’re using crunchy vegetables like an iceberg, kale, or spinach then you should consume the salad within 1-2 days as the vegetables might become soggy after a few days.
Lastly, if you’re adding other protein products in the chicken salad like tuna, pasta or even fish then consume the salad as early as possible and try not to refrigerate it.
Storing the Salad
Always store the salad in an airtight container. If you have bought a store-made salad then transfer it into another box. Moreover, never use a very small container; make sure that there is enough space so that the vegetables aren’t squeezed into one box.
When you are choosing a container then wipe it clean and make sure it isn’t wet, otherwise, the salad can get soggy.
If you use an air-tight sealed container for the chicken salad then the salad will remain fresh for 3-5 days.
The Fridge Temperature
To keep any food item fresh it needs to be kept in the refrigerator. However, if the fridge is not cold enough then it won’t keep the salad fresh. Thus, you should always make sure that the refrigerator is cold enough. Here is how long it takes for a fridge to get cold.
However, if you do not have a fridge or you’re traveling and don’t have a portable refrigerator in the car then consume the chicken salad 2 hours after prepping it.
If you don’t refrigerate the chicken salad then the bacteria may accumulate in the salad and won’t be edible.
The Condition of the Chicken
There are several ways through which you can tell if the chicken is bad and is fit to be consumed.
- If you see some green molds on the surface of the chicken then bacteria has started growing on it. In such a scenario, you should not eat the chicken salad.
- If the salad tastes funny or has a rotten smell then get rid of it as soon as possible.
- As already discussed, the maximum time that the chicken salad lasts in the refrigerator is 5 days. Thus, if the salad has been sitting in the fridge for 7 days then the taste would be slightly off and it’s time to toss the salad in the garbage.
Did you know that there are other ways for the chicken salad to last longer in the refrigerator? That’s right! You can freeze the chicken salad in the fridge and use it whenever you want!
Here is how!
How to Freeze the Chicken Salad in the Refrigerator?
You should know that this method isn’t recommended as the salad won’t taste fresh at all after being defrosted. However, if you don’t want to go through all that hassle of preparing the chicken salad then might as well freeze it.
Before freezing the salad, freeze the dressing and chicken separately. This is because:
- If you are using egg whites, they will turn rubbery after being defrosted.
- The dairy-based dressing like mayonnaise would become runny and release water.
Hence prepare the dressing and store it in another container. Similarly, shred the chicken and keep it in another box. When you want to prepare the salad, put both containers outside for an hour or two so they get defrosted.
Lastly, buy some vegetables if you want to add some crunch to the salad and you’re good to go.
Folks, Chicken salads are not something that lasts longer in the refrigerator for days. 5 DAYS is the MAXIMUM limit and that too depends upon several factors. Having said this, if you want the chicken salad to be fresh then consume it as soon as possible after preparing the salad.