Food Safety Tips|Food Storage|Food Spoilage

Safely store & reheat cooked food, avoid food spoilage & food poisoning

Quinoa

Question: How long can we keep cooked quinoa, in the refrigerator or at room temperature?  Does it go bad? 

Thank you – C.B.

Food Storage Safety Tips:

 Hi C.B., Everything goes bad,  sooner rather than later!

Cooked grains, including quinoa, are no exception. Every day of storage in the fridge reduces the food value by half and doubles the food spoilage rate – or something along those lines.

Letting any food sit out at room temperature for several hours is an invitation to food poisoning.

Refrigerate leftover quinoa or other grains in a tightly sealed storage container soon after cooking. If you’re in a hurry, and have room, you can just put the pan in the fridge (covered with a lid) for a few hours or until the next meal.

My rule for left over grains is 2 days in the fridge. To store them longer, freeze in tightly packed small storage containers for up to a month.

Thaw by steaming with a little water on low in a covered pot or in a microwave using a glass dish, or set the storage container in hot water, changing every 1/2 hour.

Once the grain reaches room temperature, don’t let it sit around for long.

I’ve read that most cases of “stomach flu” are actually food poisoning, and that in fact there is no such thing as stomach flu.


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I don’t know how much truth there is to that, but food poisoning is nothing to fool around with – that’s for sure.

You could be lucky, and go years without a problem, doing what you’ve always done for food storage, but it only takes one time where your luck runs out to land you in the hospital with food poisoning.

Judith Kingsbury, Savvy Vegetarian

More About Food Safety:

Tofu, Kitchen Hygiene & Food Safety
Is Tap Water Safe to Drink?
Avoid Ecolis & Other Nasties with Safe Sprouting

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4 Responses to “Food Safety Tips|Food Storage|Food Spoilage”

  1. Savvy Veg says:

    Thanks for the clarification Dan! That advice does run counter to the research I did, so I will have to check it out. As I understand it, food should not be cooled uncovered outside the fridge before putting it in the fridge, as that allows bacteria to develop, but should be refrigerated immediately and cooled in the fridge. I compromise by allowing very hot food to cool for a while, loosely covered, until no more steam escapes, before refrigerating. I suppose that might go along with what you’re saying.

  2. Dan says:

    Hi! just came across your site and I noticed that you are not giving correct advice about storing leftovers! You recommend putting the COVERED quinoa in the fridge. Hot food must be cooled to under 45 degrees as quickly as possible (maximum 6 hours). Covering your food in the fridge slows down cooling and increases bacteria growth. Please advise your readers to cool food uncovered, and only cover after the food is completely cooled.

    Check the FDA Food Code or your local health department for more information about proper food cooling!

    -Chef Dan

  3. Savvy Veg says:

    Hi Simon, thanks for commenting. We know quinoa is a seed, but thanks for the heads up anyway. I guess I have a lower tolerance for left-overs than you – 3 days is my absolute limit!

  4. Simon says:

    Quinoa isn’t a grain, it’s a seed. It will last far longer than 2 days in the fridge provided it is refrigerated no more than 4 hours after cooking. It will be edible for up to 7 days.

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