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How Long Does Bacon Last In The Fridge? (Solved)

Do you have leftovers and are asking yourself how long does bacon last in the fridge? You’ve come to the right place.

A delicious plate of cooked bacon.

Everyone loves bacon. It’s wickedly delicious and versatile enough to go with breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

Plus it’s easy to cook. You can cook bacon on a Blackstone griddle, on the stove, in an air-fryer, or even in the microwave.

But sometimes you might find yourself asking how long bacon lasts in the fridge or freezer, or how long it can sit out and still be safe to eat.

In this guide to bacon we’ll answer all those questions and more.

Let’s get started…

How Long Does Bacon Last In The Fridge?

There are a few factors that will determine how long bacon is good for in the fridge.

For raw bacon that is still sealed in its original package, use the manufacturer’s expiration date as a guide. Generally it will last about two weeks, but once you’ve opened the package raw bacon can only stay in the fridge for about a week before spoiling.

If unopened or placed in an airtight container or bag, raw bacon can be stored in the freezer for up to four months.

Once cooked, you can store leftover bacon in the fridge for about four to five days or in the freezer for up to a month.

If you purchased pre-cooked bacon from the supermarket shelf, it can stay in your pantry until the expiration date on the package (as long as it is stored below 85° F). Once opened, refrigerate it and it will keep for anywhere between 5 and 14 days.

Can You Freeze Bacon?

Yes, you can freeze bacon if you know you won’t be able to eat it right away. If you freeze an unopened package that is still sealed it can stay in the freezer for up to four months before it starts to lose quality.

If you cooked way too much bacon, you can freeze the leftovers and they’ll be good for up to a month.

Is Cooked Bacon Left Out Overnight Safe To Eat?

Sadly, no. You should not eat bacon that has sat out at room temperature all night.

Cooked bacon is a perishable food and like other cooked meats it needs to be refrigerated within two hours of cooking. This is because bacteria grow most rapidly in the range of temperatures between 40° F and 140° F, doubling in number in as little as 20 minutes. This range of temperatures is often called the “Danger Zone.”

On really hot days when the temperature is above 90° F it should be refrigerated after just an hour. So if your bacon is sitting in the sun all afternoon at your backyard barbecue, toss it or risk getting sick.

I know it stinks to throw out food and if you accidentally leave a plate of leftover bacon sitting on the kitchen counter overnight it can be tempting to want to save it, but you’re better safe than sorry.

It’s just not worth it to gamble with your health and risk food poisoning.

How To Tell If Bacon Is Bad Or Spoiled

The best way to tell if bacon has gone bad is to trust your own senses. Pay attention to the smell, appearance, and texture and look for telltale signs bacon has gone bad.

An early sign of spoilage is color. Fresh uncooked bacon has a pinkish red hue. When spoiled it will start to fade to a dull brown, grey, or greenish color.

Open the package and give your bacon a sniff. It should have a mild meaty or smoky smell. If it smells sour, fishy, or just unpleasant your bacon has spoiled.

Fresh bacon should feel soft and moist to the touch. If you notice your bacon feels slimy, it means bacteria is already breaking down the meat and it should go directly in the trash.

If you notice any visible mold at all, your bacon has definitely gone bad. You may be tempted to just cut off the moldy spot and cook the rest, but this is a very bad idea. If you’re able to actually see mold on any part of the bacon, it is almost certainly throughout the rest of the meat as well even if you can’t see it.

What Can Happen If You Eat Bad Bacon?

Eating bacon that has spoiled or contaminated with bacteria can have serious health consequences.

Bad bacon may contain Salmonella, Staphylococcus aureus, or E. Coli and eating it can can cause food poisoning.

Signs of food poisoning include:

  • Nausea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Chest pain
  • Dehydration
  • Abdominal cramps

If you think you’ve eaten bacon that has spoiled, consult a doctor right away.

How To Properly Store Bacon

Storing your bacon properly is the key to maximizing shelf life and quality. You should always store both cooked and uncooked bacon in the refrigerator or freezer. The low temperature will slow the growth of harmful bacteria that causes spoilage.

Whether storing bacon in the fridge or freezer, you’ll want to seal it in an airtight container or bag. Squeeze out as much excess air as possible before sealing.

What To Do With Leftover Bacon

In my house, there usually isn’t any leftover bacon but it does happen occasionally. Sometimes I even cook an extra large batch on purpose to make sure we have leftovers.

You can use leftover bacon in all sorts of ways, including:

  • As a topping for grilled frozen burger patties
  • Chopped and sprinkled on a salad
  • As a pizza topping
  • Garnish for potato soup or shrimp and grits
  • Mixed into homemade mac and cheese
  • As an on the go snack

Use your imagination. Bacon bacon bacon!