Meatballs are extremely popular thanks to their unique composition which mainly consists of a small ball of protein that can be seasoned or cooked in many different styles and variations, making them a truly wonderful and affordable dish. Since they are pretty much an easy-to-make dish, millions of individuals around the world decide to consume them in many situations when they do not desire to do some tiresome cooking that could take hours of their time. There are many styles of meatballs but the most popular variation is the Italian one which is topped with tomato sauce and lies on a spaghetti bed.
The “problem” with meatballs is the fact that it is extremely easy to prepare a lot of them without even noticing it, and this could become an issue if you do not consume them soon as they could start to turn bad. But How Long are Meatballs Good in the Fridge? The next article will focus on answering that question.
How Long are Meatballs Good in the Fridge?
Handling leftovers might not be as easy as it sounds, especially if you are dealing with meat-based dishes just like the case of meatballs. Meats tend to get some bacteria that can be extremely unpleasant for the organism as it could cause havoc in your body and develop multiple annoying symptoms. That is why knowing how to store food properly proves to be worthy knowledge.
In the case of meatballs, when they are properly cooked, it is expected that they last 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator, but it is possible to maximize the shelf life a little by refrigerating the meatballs in airtight containers or wrapped in heavy-duty aluminum foil. However, it is still recommended to throw them out after the 3-4 days have passed unless you have experience with this kind of stuff.
While the most common way of storing meatballs is in the refrigerator, you could achieve wonderful results if you use the freezer instead. Properly stored meatballs can stay in top condition for the next 3 to 4 months. Just note that after you decide to cook them again either in microwaves or ovens, you can not store them again, meaning that any leftovers must be thrown out.
Is it Safe to Store Meatballs in the Fridge?
Absolutely, there should not be any kind of problem if you decide to rely on the fridge to store your meatballs. Just keep in mind that it is important to only store them when they are cooled down. After that, you just have to transfer them to any of the recently explained products to place them in the refrigerator or freezer.
The reason why you should only store cooled-down meatballs is for the simple fact that warm food will only warm up other contents of the fridge, and that is not good at all. That is why using any kind of container is a good idea as it will protect the meatballs from getting in contact with any external element.
What if Meatballs are not Stored in the Fridge?
Since meatballs are made of meat, leaving them outside of any fridge could be one of your greatest mistakes as they could be affected by bacteria, especially if they are left in an area with room temperature. It is well known that cooking wipes out any bacteria, but this is only a temporary solution. Bacteria can grow back in many foods, especially in meats, and everything can happen in minutes.
It would be wise to avoid consuming meatballs that were left out of the fridge for too long as they could make you sick from food poisoning. That is why meatballs should be stored in the fridge, to reduce the chances of getting sick from consuming something that you cooked.
Do All Types of Meatballs Last the Same in the Fridge?
One of the greatest quirks of meatballs is the fact that there are many styles and variations that you can make, proving to be a reliable dish for those who like to add personal touches to their creations. However, it is important to note that when it comes to storage, it is safe to say that poultry meatballs can not last as long as their pork or beef counterparts.
Poultry meatballs only last an average of two days in the fridge, but if they are made with some uniquely fresh ingredients, then it might be possible that they stay good for 3 days. Generally, meats that are not as fresh as others should be consumed more quickly as they can not endure for a long time.
Is it Possible to Tell If Meatballs have Gone Bad?
It is possible to check if your meatballs are bad by examining multiple conditions. First of all, you should smell the meatballs to check if they smell sour or unpleasant, at the moment that you find any of these odors then you can know for sure that it is time to throw them away. Rotten meat is easy to distinguish, so there is no miss in this diagnostic. Remember that you should leave the meatballs to warm up a little before smelling them as cold products tend to hide any scent, even the bad ones.
Next, if you want to confirm your diagnostic, then all you have to do is poke the meatball and check the texture. If for any reason, you find a squishy or slimy texture, then it is safe to say that the meat has gone bad. On the other hand, if the texture is still firm and reasonably dry, then it is still good for consumption.
Finally. check for the existence of any green, blue or white mold as these are signs that the meat is not safe for consumption. It is extremely important to remember that there might be the case when meatballs do not show any of these signs yet they are bad, to avoid this situation, make sure to avoid keeping meatballs that have more that were stored 3 – 4 days in the fridge.