Signs That Your Leftover Fried Rice Has Gone Bad

Is there anything more comforting than dialing up your favorite Chinese restaurant, rattling off your go-to order from memory, and being rewarded in less than 20 minutes with a bag full of more hot, delicious food than you could possibly eat in one Netflix binge session? We can't think of anything. When you're finally ready to peel yourself off the couch and put away your leftovers, you simply throw out all the cute, little white takeout boxes that were already in there to make room for the new ones. But, what if you want to hold on to that old fried rice for just a little longer?

According to Still Tasty, fried rice can last for five to seven days in the refrigerator if stored correctly. There are some tell-tale signs that your rice has gone bad. If the rice has an odor, flavor, or appearance that is off, it's time to throw it out. Of course, if there is mold on the rice, it's also ready for the garbage can.

How to store leftover fried rice

The good news is you may still have time to eat all of that leftover fried rice you've been hanging onto (along with the pile of duck sauce and soy sauce you've been hoarding). For maximum refrigerator life, leftover fried rice should be put in the refrigerator no longer than two hours after cooking or purchasing it and stored in airtight containers. If stored in the freezer, leftover fried rice can last even longer.

When freezing leftover fried rice, it should also be stored in airtight containers or freezer bags. This way, it can retain its quality for six months, but if kept frozen at 0 degrees F it can remain safe indefinitely. If thawed, leftover fried rice can be kept for an additional three to four days in the refrigerator. Fried rice that is thawed otherwise — in the microwave or cold water — should be eaten immediately, and leftover fried rice that is left out for more than two hours should be thrown out to avoid ingesting bacteria (via Still Tasty). Not to worry, though, more delicious fried rice is just a phone call away.