How Long Does Vacuum Sealed Ham Last In The Fridge

How Long Does Vacuum Sealed Ham Last In The Fridge? Solved

Last Updated on June 17, 2024 by Shari Mason

From my personal observations, I’ve found that a vacuum-sealed packaging for ham tends to prolong its shelf life in comparison to other packaging techniques.

When it comes to storing ham in the fridge, using vacuum-sealed packaging is crucial. Most people ask how long does vacuum-sealed ham last in the fridge.

Join me as we navigate the world of preserved meats and discover the secrets to maintaining ham’s freshness for longer.

How Long Is Vacuum Sealed Ham Good For In The Fridge?

Drawing from my experience, most vacuum-sealed ham will last for at least two weeks in the fridge and longer in the freezer.

However, you must consider a few factors, including the type of ham, how it was prepared, and how it was sealed. 

For example, a pre-cooked ham that has been fully cooked can last up to two weeks in the fridge, while a raw ham that has been only partially cooked can last up to four days. 

Vacuum sealing is a popular food storage method because it keeps food fresh for longer than traditional methods like Tupperware or zip-top bags.

So if you’re looking for a way to extend the shelf life of your ham, vacuum sealing is a great option. But how long will stew last in your fridge?

Can You Freeze Vaccum Sealed Ham?

Yes. It is possible to freeze vacuum-sealed ham [1], although there are a few things to keep in mind. 

First, choosing a good quality ham that has been properly sealed is important. 

Second, the ham should be wrapped tightly in plastic or placed in a freezer bag before being placed in the freezer. 

“People who love to eat are always the best people.”

Julia Child, American Cook

Third, the ham should be used within six months of being frozen. When thawing the ham, it is important to thaw it slowly in the refrigerator.

This will help to prevent the formation of ice crystals and preserve the quality of the meat. 

Finally, once thawed, the ham should be cooked immediately and not refrozen. 

Following these guidelines will help to ensure that your vacuum-sealed ham is of excellent quality when thawed and cooked.


Is It Okay To Leave It At Room Temperature?

Cooking Country Ham in a Skillet

Drawing from my experience as a home cook, it is fine to leave vacuum-sealed ham at room temperature for an hour or two.

This is primarily because the ham has been cooked and is thus safe to eat even if it has not been refrigerated. 

However, it is important to note that vacuum-sealed ham will only stay fresh for a few days if left at room temperature. After that, the ham should be refrigerated or frozen to prevent spoilage. 

“Sealed ham stays fresh and lasts longer in fridge”

–Eat Pallet Restaurant & Food Advice

In addition, it is best to consume vacuum-sealed ham within a week or two of opening the package, even if it has been stored properly. Ham that has been left unrefrigerated for too long may develop an off flavor or odor. 

Therefore, while it is technically safe to leave vacuum-sealed ham at room temperature for a short period, it is still best to either refrigerate or freeze the meat as soon as possible.

Shelf Life of Vacuum Sealed Ham

Type of HamStored in the FridgeUnopened, Cooked, and Vacuum Sealed Ham
Opened, Cooked, and Vacuum Sealed HamTwo weeks or Use by date 6 months
Unopened, Uncooked, and Vacuum Sealed Ham3-5 days1 – 2 months 
Opened, Uncooked, and Vacuum Sealed HamTwo weeks or Use by date 6 months 
Opened, Uncooked and Vacuum Sealed Ham2-5 days 1 – 2 months 

How To Tell If Vacuum Sealed Ham Has Gone Bad?

  • Check the expiration date on the package. If the ham has passed this date, it will likely be spoiled. 
  • Take a look at the color of the meat. If it has turned green or brown, this is another sign that it has gone bad. 
  • Smell the ham. If it smells sour or unpleasant, it is best to discard it. 

Tips On How To Extend Shelf Life

As a seasoned home cook, here are some of the tips that can greatly help me in extending the shelf life of ham.

  • Store ham in the refrigerator or freezer.
  • Avoid opening the sealed bag too often. Every time you open the bag, you introduce new bacteria that can hasten spoilage.
  • If the ham has been sitting at room temperature for more than two hours, it should be discarded.
  • Cook ham thoroughly to kill any bacteria that may have developed during storage. 


Can bacteria grow in vacuum-sealed meat?

Yes, bacteria can grow in vacuum-sealed meat as long as the meat is still moist. The key to preventing bacterial growth is ensuring the meat is completely dry before vacuum-sealing.

If there are any traces of moisture left in the meat, bacteria will be able to grow and reproduce.

How long does processed ham last in the fridge?

It depends on the processing. In general, the processed ham will last in the fridge for 3-5 days, but it’s best to check the packaging to be sure.

If it doesn’t have a use-by date, you can usually assume it will last for 3-5 days.

What happens if you eat bad ham?

Bad ham can give you food poisoning. Symptoms of food poisoning include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps. If you experience these symptoms after eating bad ham, please see a doctor.

How long can you keep a Smithfield ham in the refrigerator?

A Smithfield ham can last in a refrigerator for up to two weeks.

How long is vacuum-sealed ham good for after the sell-by date?

It’s generally recommended that vacuum-sealed ham be consumed within 2-3 days after the sell-by date.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that the quality of the ham may decrease after this point, so it’s best to eat it sooner rather than later.

Does vacuum-packed cured ham need to be refrigerated?

Yes, vacuum-packed cured ham needs to be refrigerated. Vacuum sealing helps preserve the ham’s freshness and extend its shelf life, but it still requires refrigeration to maintain its quality and prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

Remember to store it properly in the refrigerator to ensure its safety and flavor.

In Conclusion

Based on my experience, a vacuum-sealed ham can last for two weeks in the fridge

Also, it may vary based on how the ham is processed and packaged. For instance, a boneless, vacuum-sealed ham that has been refrigerated, it should last for up to two weeks. 

However, if you have a bone-in ham vacuum-sealed and refrigerated, it will only last for about one week. 

If you want your ham to last longer, consider freezing it. When stored in the freezer, a vacuum-sealed ham can last up to six months.


Shari Mason

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