One of the questions that often arise is, “How long does egg salad last in the fridge and out of it?” and as silly it seems, it’s essential to know. Egg salad should last for three to five days if sealed and refrigerated properly.1 Storage conditions play a crucial role in the shelf life of egg salad. As bacteria can rapidly grow in room temperatures, you shouldn’t eat egg salad that has been out for more than two hours.
How to tell an egg salad is bad or spoiled?
The first thing we all do is give egg salad a little sniff to check if it has gone bad! And as much as we advise you not to do so, smelling doesn’t always give the right indication of whether the salad is edible.2
You can tell that an egg salad is spoiled if there is a visible mold appearance or a change in the flavor or odor.1,2 However, it best to throw it away after a maximum of five days and not rely on any of these signs.2
Why does egg salad turn bad?
Egg salads usually contain ingredients like mayonnaise, onion, cucumber, and potato that can be contaminated easily by bacteria.2,3 The process of contamination speeds up when you keep the egg salad at room temperature for a long time.
So if you don’t keep your favorite homemade egg salad or the egg salad sandwich leftovers in the fridge, it will turn bad and unsafe to eat.
Can I freeze an egg salad?
To prevent bacteria growth in the egg salad, it’s ideal to keep the salad at a temperature less than 40F. And the fridge is the perfect place for that.1
However, you cannot freeze an egg salad!1 Freezing will ruin the salad’s taste, and also, it becomes more susceptible to contamination by bacteria when you take it out of the freezer.
So, to keep your salad fresh for a longer time, keep it inside the fridge, not the freezer!
How to properly store egg salad and make it last?
The best way to store egg salad is to keep it in the fridge in a sealed box.1
An insulated container or aluminum foil will also sustain your egg salad’s freshness for a longer time compared to a regular box.2 This is especially helpful if you are going on a picnic or someplace where refrigeration is not an option.3
Make sure that the container is tightly sealed, and eat the salad before it reaches its five or six-hour mark. It’s always ideal to consume any food as soon as possible after preparing.3
Another way you can store egg salad to increase its shelf life is to add some lemon juice or vinegar.2 It will slow down the bacterial growth or prevent it from spoiling your salad for some time.
So how long does egg salad last? The answer is three to five days on average, provided you keep it in the fridge. Remember that it is very vulnerable to bacterial contamination in warm temperatures.
If you store it properly in an aluminum foil or airtight container or add some lemon squeeze before storing, the shelf life of the egg salad may be extended. You can use these tips for storing other foods as well.