Understanding The Concept of Sell by Date
The primary query on most people’s minds, especially those who frequently handle raw poultry, is “how long is chicken good for after sell by date?” The ‘sell by date’ is a time stamped on a package of chicken by manufacturers to indicate the last recommended day of sale. However, it’s important to note that this doesn’t necessarily mean the chicken will immediately become unsafe to eat beyond this date.
Generally, fresh raw chicken remains good for 1-2 days after the sell by date printed on the package. But this period may vary based on how you store it. Which brings us to the major question of how to store it safe to eat chicken further beyond this date?
Prolonging The Shelf Life
Through proper handling and storage, you can significantly extend the expiration date of your chicken. First, always store raw poultry in the refrigerator. A good rule of thumb is to remember to keep the chicken in the refrigerator within two days of purchase.
Next, to further extend the expiration date, consider freezing the chicken. The freeze raw chicken approach can help maintain its quality for up to nine months. Ensure that the chicken stays in its original packaging, which is typically designed to preserve its freshness.
Identifying Signs of Spoilage
Now that you know how to extend the shelf life, you should also be aware of signs of spoilage. These signs include a foul smell, slimy texture, and a change from its normal color to gray or green. Don’t take any chances in such situations, and safely discard the chicken to avoid possible food poisoning.
Spoiled chicken can also lead to significant health issues. So, it’s crucial to recognize if the chicken has gone bad. In addition to the obvious visual and smell tests, one of the key signs that your chicken has gone bad is if it remains dull and dark even after cooking.
The Right Way to Cook The Chicken
Even if your chicken passes the spoilage check, you still need to know how to cook the chicken appropriately. Ensure thorough cooking, achieving a minimum internal temperature of 165°F, to kill any stubborn pathogens that might cause foodborne illness.
After all, you don’t want to deal with the health risks posed by undercooked poultry. It’s always safer to thoroughly cook the chicken. This way, you know you have taken every possible measure to ensure your chicken is safe to eat.
The Need to Freeze Raw Chicken
Even when you follow the best storage practices, there are instances where you cannot cook the chicken within 1-2 days after the sell by date on the package of chicken. In such situations, it’s wise to freeze raw chicken.
Freezing not only preserves the chicken but also ensures that your chicken stays safe to eat. This procedure can significantly extend the shelf life of your chicken, even beyond the date of purchase.
Ensuring Safe Consumption
As a conclusion, how long is chicken good for after sell by date depends on how you store it. Always remember to pay heed to the signs of spoilage and don’t take any chances with dubious chicken.
Keep in mind that while freezing and proper storage can delay spoilage, it cannot prevent it indefinitely. Thus, always make sure to check that the chicken smells, looks, and feels good before you cook it.
1. Is chicken safe to eat 2-3 days after the sell by date?
Yes, chicken can be safe to eat 2-3 days after the sell by date if stored properly in the refrigerator.
2. How do I know if my chicken has gone bad?
Chicken that has gone bad will have a foul smell, slimy texture, and unusually gray or green color.
3. Can chicken be frozen raw to extend its shelf life?
Yes, freezing raw chicken can extend its shelf life up to nine months.
4. How long can you store raw chicken in the refrigerator?
Raw chicken can typically be stored in the refrigerator for 1-2 days after the sell by date.
5. Does cook the chicken kills possible pathogens?
Yes, cooking chicken at the right temperature (165°F) can kill possible pathogens.
6. How long can you use raw chicken after freezing it?
Chicken that has been frozen can be safely used within nine months.
7. Is it safe to eat chicken that has a slightly off smell?
No. Any off smell indicates spoilage. Do not take any chances and discard the chicken.
8. Is it safe to cook chicken after the sell by date?
Yes, if it’s 1-2 days after the sell by date, it is typically safe to cook the chicken, provided it passes the smell and look tests.
9. Can one freeze chicken in its original packaging?
Yes, it’s best to freeze chicken in its original packaging.
10. How long is chicken good for after sell by date conclusion?
Chicken can last 1-2 days after the sell by date if stored correctly in the refrigerator, and it can remain good up to nine months if frozen.