A Quick Glance…

The shelf life of chicken in the fridge can vary depending on various factors, such as the freshness of the chicken when purchased and how it has been stored. In general, raw chicken can last in the refrigerator for about 1-2 days if stored properly at or below 40°F (4°C). However, cooked chicken tends to have a longer lifespan and can typically be safely consumed within 3-4 days when stored in the refrigerator at the same temperature. It’s essential to use your best judgment and adhere to proper food safety guidelines, such as checking for any signs of spoilage or an unpleasant odor before consuming chicken that has been stored in the fridge.

How to properly store cooked, raw chicken?


When it comes to raw chicken, once you buy it, you should either cook it or freeze pretty quickly. If you place your raw chicken in the fridge, it may only last you from 1-2 days. So, unless you are just storing in there for later that day, you definitely do not want to place the chicken you just bought in the fridge.

Now if you store your raw chicken in the freezer in a sealed, freezer-safe container, it should stay safe for around 9 months if it is in pieces, and 12 months it is the whole chicken.

Now if you cooked your chicken, you will have a little more time to get back to it. Per recommendations from the US Food and Drug Administration, if you store cooked chicken in the fridge, it can last up to 4 days. If you decide to keep your cooked chicken in the freezer sealed, and in a freezer safe container, it can stay good for up to 4 months.

So it really depends on when you are looking to eat that left over chicken next.

How to tell if chicken has gone bad whether it is raw or cooked

Before you cook or eat any chicken, it is important to make sure it has not gone bad. How do you know if it has gone bad? There are ways to make sure that either your raw chicken or cooked chicken is still safe to consume.

When it comes to raw chicken, the first thing you will want to check is the smell. Does it smell rotten? The smell of rotten raw chicken is obvious. If the chicken has not gone bad, it will just smell like chicken. Check the “best if used by” date.

If you have passed that date and it has been in the fridge, more likely than not you should throw it away. If the color of the chicken has gone from pink to grey, that is another sign your raw chicken is bad. Finally, touch the raw chicken, if the texture is slimy, more likely than not it has gone bad. Throw that chicken away.

When it comes to cooked chicken, the tests are quite similar. You will want to smell it, look at the color, look for mold, and if you are still not sure if it is good, give it a small taste and you will know right away if that chicken has to be thrown out or not.

Risk of eating spoiled chicken

You do not want to eat spoiled chicken. It can make you become really ill and can cause health issues. That is why it is important that you make sure your chicken is not spoiled and it is safe to consume.


  1. https://www.foodsafety.gov/food-safety-charts/cold-food-storage-charts
  2. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-long-does-chicken-last-in-the-fridge
  3. https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/How-long-can-you-freeze-chicken

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