Holiday Food Safety
Brought to you by Shelley Swenson
FCS/EFNEP Agent II
Wakulla County Extension
Having leftover turkey and other dishes means you can have additional tasty meals after your feast. But there are limits on how long you can safely keep leftovers. Even when refrigerated properly (below 40 °F), leftovers should be eaten, frozen or discarded within 3 to 4 days.
- Refrigerate cooked leftovers promptly – within 2 hours. Use an appliance thermometer in your refrigerator to ensure your refrigerator is at 40 °F or below.
- Divide leftovers into smaller portions and store in shallow containers in the refrigerator.
- Reheat leftovers to 165 °F as measured with a food thermometer. Sauces, soups and gravies should be reheated by bringing them to a boil.
- When microwaving leftovers, cover food, stir, and rotate for even cooking.