Everyone knows leftovers don’t last forever, but how are we supposed to know when to throw them away? It isn’t difficult to find out how many days you can keep your leftovers. It is, however, very hard to remember when to start counting! Here is an easy way to remember when to throw away your leftovers.
One Simple Step
When you go to a restaurant and ask for a takeout box, pull out a pen and do some simple math. All you have to do is take the current date and add four. So, if it is October 21st, write “October 25th” on the top of the box. Now you will have a simple, visual reminder to eat your leftovers before they need to be thrown away.
Why Add Four Days?
According to foodsafety.gov, you can keep cooked leftovers in the refrigerator for three to four days. If you add four days to the current date, and then eat them before that date, you should be safe. As always, this is really a matter of personal risk tolerance.
Do You Eat a Lot of Leftovers?
In addition to writing the “eat-by” date on your take-home boxes, you can also keep a running list of leftovers on your refrigerator. The next time you’re hungry, take a look at the list and eat what is going to be thrown away first. Now, you’ll be able to eat all of your leftovers instead of wasting them.
If a list on the refrigerator is too low-tech for you, you can put the list in your favorite to-do list app. Set a reminder for a day or two before you need to throw the take-home box away. Now you’ll know what to eat for dinner!
Have you started using these tips? Do you have a food safety tip of your own? Let us know in the comments.