When you have pizza for dinner, either homemade or delivered, you can easily have leftovers when you’re done, and what you do with those leftovers is important.
Pizza can have only cheese on it or tons of meat and vegetables, and in fact the toppings play a huge role in what to do with your leftovers once the meal is complete.
It’s always best to cover up your leftover pizza before placing it in the fridge. Uncovered pizza will last for up to 2 days in the fridge but it can absorb smells from the fridge. It also makes it more exposed to bacteria in the air and it will be more prone to drying out.
This article will explore how long uncovered pizza lasts in the fridge and what happens to it when it is uncovered.
What Happens to Uncovered Pizza in the Fridge
Here are the top 7 things to know when keeping pizza uncovered in the fridge.
1. It Won’t Last as Long When Uncovered
If you cover your pizza before placing it in the fridge, you have roughly 2 to 3 days to eat it before it goes bad. If it’s uncovered, the pizza will start to get hard almost immediately.
This means that instead of 2 to 3 days, it’s best if you go ahead and eat the leftover pizza in the first day. The air in the refrigerator will start to dry out the pizza almost immediately, so the sooner you eat the leftovers, the better.
2. Never Stack the Pizza Slices on Top of One Another
Most people don’t realize this, but if you stack pizza slices on top of one another. The base of the pizza on top can become soggy as it absorbs moisture from the bottom piece of pizza.
Whether you cover the pizza or not, avoid stacking them on top of each other but instead, place them in a single layer on the plate or tray.
3. The Fans in the Fridge Can Dry Out Uncovered Pizza
One of the main reasons you don’t want to put leftover pizza in the fridge uncovered is because the air can dry the pizza out and cause it to be tough to eat.
The fans in the refrigerator only make it worse because they make the pizza a lot harder and tougher, creating an unpleasant taste and texture.
4. Mold and Bacteria Can Start to Grow
If leftover pizza is left uncovered, mold and bacteria grow much faster. While it’s true that colder temperatures such as the ones in your refrigerator will cause the bacteria growth to be slower, that doesn’t mean it stops growing altogether.
When pizza slices are uncovered, more bacteria can get on the pizza from the air or other foods in the fridge. Cover the pizza with plastic wrap or put it in an airtight container to keep it protected.
5. How the Pizza was Handled Matters
Uncovered pizza can get hard and tough quickly, grow mold and bacteria on it, and the taste and texture can change.
It is best to eat the pizza within 2 to 3 days is because there are numerous things that affect that timeframe, including the way the makers of the pizza handled it, how it was cooked, and what toppings are on it.
All of these things affect the moisture content of the pizza, which determines when it will start drying out.
6. Once the Pizza Dries Out, it is Hard to Rehydrate It
Yet another reason not to store leftover pizza in the fridge uncovered is because while uncovered pizza starts to dry out immediately, it is nearly impossible to rehydrate it.
When you store pizza uncovered then try to heat it later, it usually won’t taste quite the same.
7. For the Best Results, Store Leftover Pizza Covered in the Fridge
Mold growth, dryness, and bacteria aren’t the only things that can ruin the taste and texture of your leftover pizza, especially if you leave it uncovered.
What you’ll want to keep in mind is that it is best if you store leftover pizza in the fridge, covered, within 1 or 2 hours of taking it out of the oven. That way, bacteria won’t have time to start growing.
Does Pizza Need to Be Covered in the Fridge?
Leftover pizza does not have to be covered before putting it in the fridge, but it is definitely better to do this.
Uncovered pizza dries out quickly and that affects both the taste and texture of the pizza.
Pizza will go bad faster if left uncovered, so instead of being able to leave it in the fridge for up to 3 days, it will have to be eaten in 1 or 2 days.
Can Pizza Last Seven Days in the Fridge?
Pizza should never be left in the fridge for longer than 2 to 3 days, regardless of the circumstance. Pizza will not last in good condition for 7 days in the fridge.
After 3 days, the chances of the pizza being unsafe and dangerous to eat greatly increase. Simply put, make sure you eat any leftover pizza slices within 3 days at the latest, just to be on the safe side.
Is Pizza Good After Five Days in the Fridge?
Pizza will not be good after 5 days in the fridge. In fact, waiting 3 days to eat leftover pizza is not recommended, so anything after 3 days is just too dangerous.
If you do wait 3 days, always check to make sure there is no mold on it and no smell to it. If you have doubts of any kind, go ahead and throw the pizza in the trash can.
How Can You Tell if Pizza Is Bad?
You’ll need to check the color, texture, and smell of the pizza if you’re not sure if you should eat it or not.
Even if it’s only been a day or 2, make sure you check the pizza before you eat it. Make sure it doesn’t smell bad, have mold or mildew on it, or is either too hard or too mushy. Always throw it out if you have any doubts whatsoever.
What Happens if You Eat Old Pizza?
Eating old pizza can make you sick as it can have excess harmful bacteria or mold. Always throw it out if it looks funny, smells funny, or tastes funny, even if it hasn’t been in the fridge for long.
Uncovered pizza can last for 1-2 days in the fridge but it will definitely be dryer than if you covered it. If you have the time, put it on a ceramic plate and cover it with plastic wrap. You can also throw it in a clean container with an airtight lid. This will help to keep bacteria from the fridge