The Real Reason You Shouldn't Reheat Leftover Buffet Food

Some foods are just not worth reheating because it can result in a subpar meal, but some reheated foods are actually dangerous to your health. According to Insider, you should never reheat anything that comes from a buffet. Many foods at buffets are left out at room temperature for hours at a time, and that makes those dishes the perfect breeding grounds for bacteria. When these foods are reheated, the germs may not be killed completely and can lead to food poisoning.

One food, in particular, that is never good to reheat from a buffet is rice. Delish reported that rice should not be left to sit out at room temperature for more than an hour. If it is left at room temperature for an hour or more, then the bacteria that are on the rice begin to grow rapidly, which is why leftover rice can make you sick when reheated. If you're enjoying rice you've prepared at home, it should be refrigerated as soon as possible after it cools if you're wanting to save some for leftovers.

Buffet foods that are particularly dangerous to reheat

In addition to rice, some other buffet foods are even more dangerous to reheat than others. Things like potatoes, spinach, mushrooms, and chicken should not be reheated. Potatoes, like rice, are great breeding grounds for botulism when left at room temperature. If potatoes are tightly wrapped in aluminum foil, then they are surprisingly even more likely to grow bacteria.

Just like rice and potatoes, mushrooms can give you gastric issues due to the bacteria it grows when left out at room temperature too. Clearly, there is a pattern that many foods that are left out, like at a buffet, are more likely to grow harmful bacteria.

Things like spinach have nitrates that can become carcinogenic when heated in the microwave. Other foods like chicken must be reheated properly to the right temperature of 175 degrees Fahrenheit to ensure all germs and bacteria are killed. That's just one more reason to leave your leftovers from a buffet on your plate.