Food Preservation

How Long Does Cooked Rice Last? Does Cooked Rice Go Bad?

In this article, you will know the answer to the query “How Long Does Cooked Rice Last? Does Cooked Rice Go Bad?“.

The fine textures and aroma of it satisfy the appetite, no matter if it is white, brown, short, medium, or long. Could you tell me what it is?

You guessed right, rice is the subject. There is no doubt that rice is one of the most important foods for most people.

Rice is a staple food everywhere, whether it is part of the daily meal, a party, or some other special occasion. Whether it is biryani, fried rice, pancakes, or another form of cooked rice, people love it.

Different varieties of it are enjoyed by them. Among them, cooked rice is most common, easy to cook, and can be served with curry or gravy.

Additionally, its leftovers are used to prepare a variety of dishes.

We need to learn how to make it and how to preserve it for a long time in order to explore it more and keep ourselves and our families healthy.

What is Cooked Rice Anyway?

Cooked rice is rice that has been prepared either by steaming or boiling. Rice that has been steamed or boiled is also known as steamed or boiled rice.

Rice and water are the two main ingredients in cooked rice. In some varieties of rice, rinsing and soaking the grains before cooking speeds up the cooking process.

Rice has lost its aroma for a long time when heated. Keeping the aroma of rice soaked maintains the dish’s flavor.

A pinch of salt is then added to the rice, water is added and it is set to boil.

It is the trapped steam inside the pot that allows the rice to cook adequately. The process of fermentation increases rice’s mass and size by absorbing water.

A few more types of rice should not be rinsed because they have been enriched with vitamins and minerals, and rinsing destroys their nutritional value. Before you do anything, make sure you are sure.

A variety of dishes use cooked rice as the main ingredient, such as biryani, risotto, pasta bhat, rice balls, and rice cakes.

Leftover steamed rice can also be used to make fried rice dishes, porridge, rice pancakes, etc.

Does Cooked Rice Go bad? How Long Does Cooked Rice last?

The shelf life of rice seems to be endless, making it one of those pantry staple foods. However, the actual longevity of cooked rice depends on how it is cooled and preserved.

When cooked rice is not cooled, stored, or reheated properly, it can go bad, causing food poisoning.

It is better to throw away cooked rice that has been left out at room temperature for more than two hours before being stored in the fridge.

Cooked rice can be stored at room temperature for two to three hours without refrigeration. It can be stored for four to six days in the freezer.

It can only be stored in the freezer at zero degrees Fahrenheit in an airtight container or microwave plastic bag for a maximum of six months. Six-month shelf life can be achieved by storing cooked rice in this container.

It can be used by transferring it to a bowl and defrosting it to room temperature, then microwaving it for three to four minutes. In addition to maintaining the quality of rice, you also get healthy food in minutes.

How Long Does Cooked Rice last in the Fridge?

Keeping rice in the fridge properly can prolong its shelf life by up to six days. Cooked rice can be extended in shelf life by refrigerating in an airtight container or a resealable plastic container.

Modern fridges with higher technology and efficiency can keep cooked rice edible for four to six days or more.

The storage of it at zero degrees Fahrenheit increases its preservation time by up to six months without compromising its quality, but it will remain safe after that.

After cooking rice, it is important to refrigerate it as soon as possible after cooling. The rice should be cooled to room temperature once it has been cooked. Food should be packaged in individual bags in small bowls.

It should be refrigerated as soon as possible. Take out the bowl when you need it and microwave it for two to three minutes. You can serve the rice in a few minutes and enjoy it right away.

How to Tell if the Cooked Rice Is Bad?

Cooked rice is quite difficult to determine whether it is good or bad, unlike most foods.

It is easy to tell whether cooked rice has gone bad by observing the following signs:

Rice becomes hard and dry when kept in the refrigerator. We should eat rice within a few days of cooking. Anything beyond that is unhealthy. It is best to store cooked rice in the refrigerator in an airtight container to extend its shelf life.

Cooked rice kept at room temperature for a long time- It’s good to reduce the time cooked rice is kept at room temperature. This creates the ideal environment for bacteria to grow. Uncooked rice may carry Bacillus cereus spores.

It is still possible for these spores to exist after cooking. In the absence of proper cooling, preservation, or reheating, the bacteria may cause food poisoning. Keeping cooked rice at room temperature for more than two hours before storing it in the refrigerator makes it unsafe to consume.

When rice is cooled and reheated many times, it is always recommended to minimize the number of times it is cooled and reheated. Bacteria thrive in this kind of environment because it gives them a perfect environment to grow. Rice leftovers should only be reheated once and consumed safely.

Having an unpleasant smell coming from your cooked rice is an indication that it has gone bad. Rice that has been in the refrigerator for more than four days should be thrown away.

The cooked rice should be consumed within three to four days following its cooking, in addition to the aforementioned points.

How to Store Cooked Rice Properly?

It’s essential to learn how to store rice properly so that we can enjoy it later as well. Sometimes, we cook rice extra so that it’s ready when we need it, but it’s important to know how to store it properly.

In order to store it properly, there are several ways to do so, so let’s take a look at them one by one.

It is possible to store cooked rice in your rice cooker if the “keep warm” button is turned on. Rice can be stored in it for three hours (best quality) until one day after cooking.

In summer, keep it at room temperature for two to three hours, and in winter, keep it for a day.

Another good option is to store it in the refrigerator.

The product can also be used for three days without losing its quality. Last but not least, store cooked rice in the freezer.

Rice can be stored for up to one month using this process. Airtight containers with steam vents are the only requirement.

Freshly cooked rice can be packed in the container with steam and the lid must be covered immediately to lock in the steam and moisture. You can then freeze the rice once it has cooled. One month will be enough time for it to maintain its quality.

Once that is done, whenever rice is needed, remove it from the freezer, unlock the vent, and defrost it properly in the microwave for 3-4 minutes.

If you don’t have microwave-safe containers or glass containers with you, do not worry. You can simply wrap it in plastic wrap that is microwave-safe. Place the cooled rice on it and tightly wrap it.

Make sure the freezer bag is tightly closed. On the packaging, mention the date of packaging. It only needs to be defrosted when you are ready to use it.

Set it in a bowl and add some water to add some moisture, then microwave it for two minutes.

Your rice is ready to satiate your hunger.


As a result of reading this article, you will be able to store cooked rice for yourself and for your family for a long time.

In case you have only one or two members in your family and you don’t like to make rice so often, simply cook it once and store it in the fridge and you’ll save time and money.

The leftover cooked rice can also be used to prepare a variety of dishes without compromising on its quality.

As a result, you should preserve your cooked rice in a safe way and keep your family healthy.

How Long Does Cooked Rice Last? Does Cooked Rice Go Bad?


15 minutes


15 minutes


30 minutes


  • Cooked rice
  • Air-tight containers or Ziplock bags
  • Labels and markers


  • Read the guide thoroughly to learn how long it lasts.
  • Label your container with the content and date and keep track of how much you’re using!
  • Make sure to store in an airtight container in a cool, dark place (pantry or fridge).

If you want to read more about food preservation, read here: FOOD PRESERVATION.

Ayub Khan

Ayub Khan is an accomplished culinary author with a passion for cooking and 6 years of experience. His creative ideas and valuable tips inspire readers to explore new flavors and take their culinary skills to the next level.

Rehmat Dietitian

Rehmat is a certified food dietitian having experience of 10 years in reviewing and practicing on foods different aspects.

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