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How Long Does KFC Chicken Last In The Fridge

How Long Does KFC Chicken Last In The Fridge? Solved (2023)

Last Updated on December 31, 2022 by Shari Mason

KFC chickens are a classic favorite that many people enjoy, but if you’re planning to store them in the fridge for later, you may wonder how long they will last.

Let’s find out how long KFC chicken lasts in the fridge and get some useful tips to keep your KFC leftovers safe and delicious.

Read on to learn more about KFC’s shelf life, proper storage, and signs of spoilage.

How Long Can KFC Chicken Last In The Fridge?

fried chicken on a white plate

KFC chicken lasts up to 3-4 days in the fridge if stored properly. Like any other fried chicken, it should not be consumed past its preferred storage period as it may cause harm and food poisoning.

It’s important to note that all cooked foods have a limited shelf life, regardless of whether they are from KFC or not.

When purchasing or ordering KFC chicken, ensure that you consume it as soon as possible after purchase or delivery so that its freshness and safety aren’t compromised by extended storage time.

Why Should You Eat Only Until 4 Days?

You should only consume it within four days for safety reasons.

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends consuming cooked chicken for up to four days when stored in the refrigerator at 40°F or below. [1]

“I think no matter what the occasion may be, you can never go wrong by showing up at the dinner table with a hot plate of fried chicken.”

– Paula Deen, American Chef

However, it’s best not to keep cooked chicken products like KFC chicken for longer than two days to ensure the best quality of taste and safety.

How To Properly Store KFC Chicken In The Fridge

After buying KFC, place it immediately (ideally within 2 hours) in an airtight container or zip-top bag, seal tightly, and place it in a refrigerator set at 40°F (4°C) or below.

This will help prevent cross-contamination with other foods stored inside your refrigerator and keep it fresher for longer than if left out in open-air containers, allowing moisture buildup and faster spoilage rates over time.

Store away from raw meats, fish, and other similar food items so as not to contaminate them with potential bacterial growth

Can You Freeze KFC Chicken To Make It Last Longer?

Any leftover KFC fried chicken may be frozen and is perfectly safe until 3-4 months past the original date purchased without sacrificing too much of its flavor and quality.

To freeze KFC fried chicken, cool it completely first and place the chicken in covered airtight containers or freezer-safe bags/heavy-duty freezer bags or wrap tightly with freezer wrap or plastic wrap before freezing.

When properly stored, frozen chicken can be safe indefinitely. But make sure to thaw the chicken in the fridge overnight and reheat it thoroughly.

You can reheat it any way you like, either in a microwave, air fryer, or wire rack, as long as you make it hot enough to kill any bacteria that may cause food poisoning or foodborne illness.

How To Tell If It Has Gone Bad

Color 

When freshly cooked, the fried chicken should be a golden brown color. However, toss the leftover fried chicken if you notice discoloration, such as greenish-gray spots.

Because bacteria have most likely begun to grow on that cooked chicken, it must be discarded immediately before anyone becomes ill from eating spoiled chicken.

Odor 

Smelling it is the first way to determine whether your cooked chicken is still good. The aroma of freshly cooked chicken should be pleasant.

However, if it has any unpleasant or sour smell, it is likely that your fried chicken has gone bad and should be discarded immediately for safety reasons.

Texture

Texture changes are another indicator that fried chicken has gone bad. When touched, it should feel tender because its natural oils are still intact.

However, if it feels dry or slimy, this could indicate spoilage from bacterial growth on the surface of the meat, which will produce toxins that are harmful to consume even after high-temperature cooking. [2]

Is It Dangerous To Eat Stale KFC Chicken?

close up shot of a fried chicken

Yes. Eating stale KFC chicken can be dangerous. Stale chicken can contain bacteria that could cause food poisoning, so it’s important to practice good food safety and avoid consuming stale or bad chicken.

On a side note, make sure to toss away and do not eat cooked chicken that has been sitting “danger zone” or at room temperature longer than two hours, even if it doesn’t look stale at all, as it may still cause food poisoning.

FAQs

Can you reheat KFC chicken?

Yes, reheating KFC fried chicken is a good idea to help restore its juicy texture and flavor while also ensuring that it is safe to eat.

When reheating KFC chicken, make sure the internal temperature reaches 165°F or higher before eating.

This ensures that most bacteria in the food are killed during the heating process. Also, avoid overcooking your food, as this can cause your reheated chicken to become dry and tough.

Can I eat KFC chicken that’s been in the fridge for a week?

You should not eat fried chicken from KFC or any food that has been in the fridge for a week.

Chicken should be consumed within 3-4 days of being stored in the fridge.

If you plan to keep KFC food leftovers for more than four days or later date, then freeze them in the freezer right away.

Also, make sure to reheat it properly after thawing and eat it within a few hours, as reheated foods should not be stored or frozen again.

Final Verdict

KFC chickens do not keep well at room temperature, so if you have any leftovers, place them in a sealed container and store them in the fridge as soon as possible, ideally within two hours of purchase or delivery.

If you intend to keep it for more than four days, store it in the freezer, but follow proper procedures to avoid consuming contaminated food.

KFC chicken should be consumed within three to four days in the fridge and up to two months when frozen. 

If you are unsure of its freshness or have any doubts regarding food safety, it is best to discard it.

References:

  1. https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/How-long-can-you-keep-cooked-chicken 
  2. https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/If-I-forget-to-put-food-away-in-the-refrigerator-wont-heating-or-reheating 
Shari Mason

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