How Good Is Steak That Has Been In The Fridge For 7 Days?

Want to know if you can eat steak that has been in the fridge for 7 days? Find out in this article.

According to the US Department of Agriculture, raw, undercooked, or cooked steak is only good for 3-5 days in the fridge. Anything beyond this will expose you to foodborne illnesses.

Continue reading to see more details on how long steak can last and how to preserve it.

What happens when you eat steak kept in the fridge for 7 days?

As said earlier, eating steak that has been in the fridge for 7 days or more will expose you to foodborne illnesses. The longer steak stays in the fridge, the more bacteria breed in it.

These pathogenic bacteria include E. coil, salmonella, and Staphylococcus. The presence or an accumulation of this bacteria in the body manifests with symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, fever, abdominal pains, and other gastrointestinal issues.

These symptoms usually occur between 1 to 3 days of consumption and may disappear after four days. If the symptoms persist for up to a week, you should see a doctor.

How long can steak last in the fridge?

The US Department of Agriculture states that steak lasts between 3 to 5 days. However, some speculations try to oppose the extent to which they last in the fridge.

Some of these speculations are:

1. Steak sealed in plastic bags lasts longer

Store-bought steaks are wrapped in plastic bags, which are supposed to be airtight. Meat grows mold or bacteria when they are exposed to oxygen; since these plastic are airtight, they ought to last longer.

However, those plastic bags are thin and they tear easily. The US Department of Agriculture claims it is not safe to assume and store longer. It is best to be on the safe side and store steak for no more than five days.

2. Vacuum-sealed steak will last longer

Many companies sell their steak in vacuum-sealed packages and claim its shelf life is extended as much as ten days. However, the USDA advises that vacuum sealing doesn’t make any difference.

3. Steak wrapped with butcher paper

Many people assume that butcher paper can be used to wrap steak as tightly as plastic wrap does. However, it is not 100 percent safe and is not advised by the USDA as well.

So, what is the best way to store your steak?

If you don’t plan to use steak in five days, freeze it. Steak can be kept frozen for as long as 6 to 9 months.

Below are some tips for storing your steak in the freezer:

  • Store in the bottom section of the freezer.
  • Wrap the steak with aluminum foil; even if it is still in its original package, you can still add an extra layer of foil protection. This helps to preserve the quality and taste of the steak further.
  • Do not freeze meat that has been kept at room temperature for more than 2 hours. The best practice is to cook the meat properly first before freezing.

Can you eat steak that has passed its use-by date?

Yes, you can, but it also depends on a few variables. The USDA states that it is okay to eat steak that has passed its use-by date but not more than two days.

Remember that the use-by date is an estimate. If the steak is still below two days after its use-by date, it doesn’t mean the steak is bad. Instead, the quality and taste of the meat would not be at their best.

Now, how can you tell if steak is bad?

You probably have bad or spoiled steak if:

1. It is way past its use-by date

If you end up with a steak that is way past its use-by date, there is a high possibility that the steak is bad. You should avoid eating such steak as it may cause food poisoning.

2. The steak is slimy

Having a steak that feels slimy or slippery to the touch is a particularly obvious sign it isn’t good. Slime is caused by a build-up of harmful bacteria.

3. The steak has a suspicious color

Steaks have a natural red color, and this is a result of the hemoglobin and myoglobin present in them. However, if the steak has a pale grey color or black spots on them, then it is probably bad and should not be eaten.

4. It has an offensive smell

Normally, the smell of meat isn’t quite appealing, but it is also not offensive. If you get an offensive or off-putting smell from your steak (sour or ammonia-like), then there is a good chance that the steak is bad.

Can you cook a spoilt steak?

No, you shouldn’t. No matter how long you cook the steak, the pathogen and bacteria in it will not die. It is best to throw out the steak and purchase another.


What temperature range should your fridge be in to store steak?

Your refrigerator should be between 34 (1°C) to 40°F (4°C).

Should you leave a frozen steak on the counter to defrost overnight?

No, you should not. Leaving steak out for more than 2 hours can promote mold and bacteria growth. The best way to store steak is to keep it in the fridge overnight and cook it the next day.

Can you eat steak that has been frozen for three years?

Yes, you can. Although the steak may not taste fresh, it’ll be healthy and safe to eat if it is still within its printed date. Also, you must be sure that the pack must have been unopened.

How long should a refrigerated steak sit out before grilling?

Refrigerated steak should not sit out for more than 20 – 30 minutes. You can also pat the steak dry with paper towels if you are in a hurry.

Can you eat raw steak?

While it is a common practice, it is not healthy. Raw steak contains bacteria and may cause food poisoning. The USDA recommends all steak be cooked to at least 145°F before eating.


Steak kept for more than five days is considered harmful, according to the US Department of Agriculture. If you have steak that has been in the fridge for 7 days or more, please, trash it.

Make sure you buy a steak that is still within its printed date. Always examine your steak for signs of spoilage before you eat or cook it.

Also, learn how to freeze cooked steak and how to reheat frozen cooked steak.

Thank you for reading this article.