How Long Can You Keep Marinated Meat in the Fridge?

How Long Can You Keep Marinated Meat in the Fridge

When it comes to storing marinated meat, refrigerating is one of the options. But how long can you keep marinated meat in the fridge?

If stored correctly, you can keep marinated meat in the fridge for about 2-3 days. This time duration should not cause the meat any problem. However, you should check the marinade occasionally to make sure that everything is fine.

If you find discoloration or the meat feels slimy, I suggest discarding it. This is because, if the marinade has gone bad, it can affect the taste of the meat.

Also, this might cause foodborne illnesses. In addition to that, you should not keep marinated meat in the fridge for a long time.

If you are concerned about your refrigerator running out of space due to large chunks of meat, you can freeze the meat. You can store marinated meat in the freezer for up to 3-4 months.

How to store marinated meat in the fridge correctly?

If you are going to store marinated meat in the fridge, make sure it is tightly wrapped.

If possible, seal it with an airtight sealer so that it doesn’t leak out the juices of the marinade.

Make sure you also properly wash your hands after handling raw meat or touching anything contaminated by raw meat.

Hand washing is vital and can help reduce the risk of foodborne illness.

It is advisable for you to keep track of how long have you kept a particular chunk of meat in the fridge.

In this way, if something goes wrong, you will know when was the last time you checked it and how long have you kept it in the fridge already (or freezer).

By doing so, you will be able to know how long did you keep marinated meat in the fridge.

How to marinate meat in the fridge?

This might be a food safety question. The most common answer when it comes to storing meat in the fridge is that you should cook your meat whenever ready.

If you have pre-cooked meat, however, I suggest you store them in the freezer instead of marinating them with raw ingredients and then storing them back inside the refrigerator.

This is because harmful bacteria can grow faster at low temperatures.

Heat is also a way of killing those microorganisms as well as other pathogens. It doesn’t matter which temperature they are grown from but rather what each microorganism’s temperature optimum range is.

Heat will dispatch all if they’re within its correct range.

So make sure your main idea is not to store the meat in the fridge for a very long time. If you are going to cook meat, then it would be better if you can handle it right away.

 This can help you save more time and effort.

Tips for storing marinated meat properly and safely

Microwave-safe baggies (or sealed plastic containers) are good when it comes to storing marinated meat in the fridge or freezer.

This way, you will have less hassle when it comes to carrying them out while cooking.

Just make sure that they are tightly sealed so moisture doesn’t leak out and come into contact with your food.

The same goes if you are using glass jars or mason jars, just make sure they’re tightly sealed. Then consider labeling them as well.

You don’t want any of your family members opening the wrong jar thinking it’s a different type of meat!

Make sure that if you are going to use microwave-safe plastic bags, you don’t put them in the microwave immediately after opening.

It is better to spread out any meat pieces, seasonings, and other ingredients first so that the bag can dry a little bit lest it ruins your microwave when you try microwaving it right away.

Avoid keeping marinated meat at room temperature for too long because it has already been exposed to oxygen (and thus turned rancid) before being refrigerated or frozen.

The same goes if you opened a package of raw meat then left it on your kitchen counter for hours before putting it into cold storage.

The surface microbes will multiply very quickly once they’re exposed to oxygen, increasing your chance of foodborne illnesses by one hundredfold.

What container should be used for refrigerating marinated meat?

If you planning to refrigerate your marinated meat, use plastic containers or any other airtight sealer.

You can find a lot of plastic and glass containers these days that are airtight. You might want to check out the local department store.

Glass jars or mason jars can also be used for marinating meat. In fact, I often use them when marinating meat in the fridge or freezer because they fit very well on my countertop.

I just make sure it is tightly sealed so that moisture doesn’t leak inside the jar.

It is important for you to check the storage instructions on your marinade’s label before using it.

Some of them do not recommend that it should be refrigerated because it might lose its flavor or color or even spoil faster than usual.

If there are no recommendations, then it would be beneficial if you follow what I have stated above.

Keep in mind that some ingredients can react with others when stored together and thus produce bad-smelling odors and/or flavors instead of nice ones.

Why should you avoid storing marinated meat in the fridge for a long period of time?

If stored incorrectly, things might go out of hand. For example, if you have kept your marinated meat in the fridge overnight in warm temperatures (below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, about 5-10 degrees Celsius), it might start spoiling faster than intended.

It is because harmful bacteria can grow quickly under these temperature conditions.

You might end up with spoiled meat or worse, foodborne illnesses.

Make sure that when you store your marinated meat in the refrigerator, it is tightly wrapped and sealed to prevent moisture from escaping from inside the package as much as possible.

You don’t want any moisture to leak out.

If you find the meat has gone bad, stop storing it in the fridge and place it in the freezer instead for freezing purposes.

This might be a good way of reducing the risk of foodborne illnesses.

Final Thoughts

Marinating meat is a very important practice but so is storing it. Fortunately, you can easily store it in the fridge for about 2-3 days.

You should try to rotate the meat every day in case you don’t eat it on time. If your refrigerator is full, consider using vacuum storage bags instead of other methods because they are very useful for maintaining airtight seals.

Make sure that if you are going to store marinated meat in plastic containers, avoid storing them in direct contact with the fridge walls or shelves.

That way, moisture from surrounding foods won’t drip down and spoil your meat accidentally when defrosting or when putting it back into cold storage again.

The whole process of marinating and storing will only be worth it if you are able to cook your food on time and with the right materials.

In order not to make any unnecessary mistakes, always follow the instructions given on labels or by professionals.

Thank you for reading.


USDA: Food Safety and Inspection Service