It is not recommended to consume any food after it has been left out overnight at room temperature, as this frequently creates a breeding ground for various unwanted bacteria. If fried food is left on the counter, it’s best to throw it out and eat something else instead.
Fried food that has been left out overnight should not be consumed. It can result in potentially harmful side effects, and it is well past the recommended time for food to be at room temperature. Anything past the two-hour mark for perishable foods is a questionable territory, and consuming this food increases the likelihood of food poisoning.
Even with the two-hour mark as a guideline, it can be difficult to tell if food has gone bad or not and what might happen if you eat the leftovers. Ensure to continue reading as we go over everything related to the question: “can you eat fried chicken left out overnight?”
Can You Eat Fried Chicken Left Out Overnight?
If you have some fried chicken that you left out overnight, you might be wondering if you eat fried chicken left out overnight.
Any cooked chicken left at room temperature for more than two hours should be thrown away. The general rule for cooked chicken is that it should not be left out on your kitchen table or buffet for more than two hours unless it is kept warm above 140°F.
The same is true for cooked chicken eaten outside, such as at a picnic or barbecue. When the temperature inside or outside exceeds 90°F (32.2°C), the cooked chicken becomes unsafe to eat after one hour.
Why is it two hours? You might be surprised to learn that bacteria that cause illness, such as Salmonella and E.coli, multiply quickly between 40°F and 140°F (4°C and 60°C; aka the Danger Zone). According to the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service, the number of bacteria can double every 20 minutes. In other words, millions of bacteria may already be present after sitting out the cooked chicken for hours.
How Can You Tell If Fried Foods Have Gone Bad?
Like any other food, Fried foods will give off immediate warning signs that they are no longer safe to eat.
Toss the fried food if it appears moldy or has a solid sour aroma. Leftovers should generally retain the same aroma as when served fresh, though the texture may change.
When bringing food home from a favorite restaurant, eating the leftovers within a day or two is best to avoid spoilage. It’s disheartening to open the to-go container of the meal you’ve been anticipating only to find moldy fried leftovers.
Occasionally, spoiled food will develop a slimy layer. Eating is unpleasant and indicates that harmful bacteria have taken over the food, which should be discarded immediately. Spoiled food can become mushy, even if it is a food item that should not be soft, such as fried chicken.
If you are unsure how long the food has been stored in the fridge or freezer, proceed cautiously. The best way to proceed is to use various senses to determine whether the food is still safe to eat.
If the food has been stored for an extended period, it should be discarded to avoid consuming spoiled fried food.
What Happens If You Eat Fried Foods That Have Gone Bad?
Did you keep your fried foods out overnight and later notice it has gone bad? You might be curious to know what will happen if you try to eat them.
Eating spoiled fried food can cause various stomach problems which aren’t severe. Many people may feel queasy when they realize their food has gone bad, which are both normal reactions.
Food poisoning can occur in rare cases, requiring increased liquids and possibly over-the-counter medications to alleviate the symptoms.
There may be an unpleasant taste when eating spoiled fried food. The remainder of the food should be discarded immediately after spitting it out. If symptoms appear, they should be treated individually, and if they persist, medical attention should be sought.
To avoid unnecessary problems, fried food should be appropriately stored and consumed within 2-3 days. Before deciding on a flavor, it’s best to visually inspect the food and give it a quick sniff test to ensure everything looks and smells good.
Food poisoning symptoms can appear within hours of consuming contaminated food. While the symptoms are generally mild, they can be unpleasant and may take several days to clear from one’s system.
Does Reheating Food Remove Bacteria?
Even a minute amount of hazardous bacteria can be dangerous when we consume leftover food. But does reheating food remove bacteria?
Most harmful airborne bacteria can be killed by reheating food to the proper temperature. Of course, if the food has already spoiled, reheating will do little to restore its safety for consumption, and it should be discarded immediately.
Because certain food-borne bacteria are not killed off during the heating process, proper food safety precautions are advised.
If perishable food is left at room temperature for more than two hours, dangerous bacteria can quickly take over and cause harmful symptoms if consumed.
After the food is removed from the heat source, the two-hour time period begins. If the food is cooked on the stove or in the oven, the two-hour timer starts when it is removed.
As the food cools to room temperature, harmful bacteria grow, producing potentially dangerous spores that should not be consumed.
If the temperature inside the house exceeds 90 degrees, the two-hour mark is no longer the standard. For food to be safe for human consumption, this time should be cut in half, and the food should be refrigerated within an hour.
Bacteria can produce heat-resistant spores that are unaffected by reheating. If the food has been out for an indefinite period, it is better to be safe than sorry, and the item should be discarded.
Reheating food should never be the primary method to remove contamination or bacteria from food. It is not foolproof and should not be used to reheat leftovers.
How Should Fried Foods Be Stored?
Some examples of fried foods are fish, french fries, chicken strips, and cheese sticks, but you can deep fry anything. So, when you make some fried foods, you must store them properly. So, how should fried foods be stored?
People should keep the moisture content in the container in mind when storing fried foods. Fried foods lose their crispness when they become soggy, so placing a paper towel in the container can help absorb some excess moisture.
Fried food will inevitably lose its crunch after being stored in the fridge, but it can be revived with the proper reheating method.
When fried food is frozen, it frequently affects both the taste and texture of the dish. However, because the food can be safely stored for several months, this method can extend its lifespan.
When removing frozen items to reheat, do not defrost them. For the best results, they should be heated from frozen.
Allowing fried food to cool completely before storing it is recommended. Attempting to store hot fried food can result in excess condensation within the container, resulting in soggy breading that will not crisp up again, regardless of the reheating method used.
Whether plastic or glass, Fried foods should always be stored in an airtight container. It keeps the food fresh and prevents it from going rancid prematurely.
Food can be stored in airtight Tupperware containers for up to 3-5 days. At this point, it should be eaten, discarded, or frozen for later use.
How Should You Reheat Fried Foods?
Reheating fried food can be difficult, and it rarely returns to its original texture. With the invention and widespread use of the air fryer, households worldwide can breathe new life into their fried leftovers. While an air fryer may not get the food as crispy as it once was, it will get it close, and it is undoubtedly a better option than a microwave.
The quickest way to get a hot meal on the table is to reheat fried food in the microwave. However, the texture will become soggy, and the fried breading will likely fall off and become unpleasant and mushy to eat.
A conventional oven or a toaster oven is the second best method for reheating fried food. Temperatures between 350 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit can be used to dry out moisture and crisp up the outer layer of food.
It is the most accessible method for many people to retrain a semi-crisp exterior on leftover fried food.
Placing leftover fried food on a wire rack gives it more breathing room, allowing more moisture to evaporate during the heating process. This method allows the bottom of the food item to warm up evenly and become crispy and delicious.
Best Oil For Fried Chicken To Try
1. La Tourangelle Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
La Tourangelle Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil is cold-pressed from Picual olives grown organically on a single family-owned estate in Andaluca, Spain. The olives are harvested early and processed on-site within two hours to ensure low acidity and high quality. As a result, this sage green oil is intense and fruity, with hints of freshly cut grass, almond, and fresh olive leaves and a peppery finish.
La Tourangelle Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a low-cost organic oil ideal for medium-high heat cooking. Excellent for sautéing, baking, dipping, blending, drizzling, or salad dressing. With its fragrant aroma and fresh flavor, La Tourangelle Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil will quickly become your go-to olive oil. La Tourangelle Organic Olive Oil is made from Picual olives, high in polyphenols. Polyphenols may aid in the prevention of blood clots, the regulation of blood sugar levels, and the prevention of heart disease. They may help to improve digestion and brain function.
- Organic, Non-GMO
When you’re hosting a party, doing other chores, or enjoying a Sunday night dinner with your family, it’s easy to lose time. However, cooked chicken, such as chicken kabobs and grilled chicken, that has been left out may last less time than you had hoped. If you’re wondering how long cooked chicken can be left out and whether it’s safe to eat later, keep reading to find out the exact time frame and what you can do to keep cooked chicken safe.
I’m a mom of three, a chef, a writer, and food blogger. I live in the suburbs of New Jersey where I love to cook and bake all day long. Cooking is a form of art and a way to preserve the beauty of nature. I create an edible canvas with fresh, seasonal ingredients.