Did you have a store-bought or a home-cooked rotisserie chicken? With its golden-brown, savory, and mouth-watering flavor, this cooked rotisserie chicken is the crowd’s favorite. It’s not only perfect for Sunday family dinners, but you can have it with your salads and sandwiches during the weekdays.
If you’re wondering how long rotisserie chicken sits out, we’ve gathered some info for you! So, just stay in the loop and keep on reading!
How Long Can Rotisserie Chicken Last?
Rotisserie chicken, like other cooked meat, can only last up to two hours at room temperature. But during the summer season, when the weather’s scorching and the temperature bounces up to 90 degrees Fahrenheit, you can expect your favorite rotisserie chicken to last only for an hour.
The USDA tells us that we should not leave our rotisserie chicken exposed to room temperature of 40 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit beyond two hours unrefrigerated. This temperature range is what we call the “danger zone.”
Cooked meat like rotisserie chicken exposed to a danger zone will accumulate pathogenic bacteria, which would likely cause foodborne illnesses when consumed. So, the takeaway is don’t let your chicken stay out for more than two hours.
If you’re not planning to indulge and eat your chicken in one sitting, it’s better to store it, put it in the fridge or freezer, and extend its shelf life. That way, you can have some rotisserie chicken the next time you’re craving it.
How Long Can I Store Rotisserie Chicken in my Fridge?
Now, you’re aware that rotisserie chicken leftovers are something you can’t sit out for more than two hours. And that you must put it in the fridge right away.
But the next question that would pop into our minds is how long can you store the rotisserie chicken inside your refrigerator? Here are some things worth remembering!
According to the USDA, a rotisserie chicken can stay inside the fridge for seven days at 40 degrees Fahrenheit and below. On the other hand, if your refrigerator has an average temperature of 50 degrees Fahrenheit, the USDA says that the chicken will stay out for only two days.
Do you plan to use your rotisserie chicken leftovers for delightful recipes like chicken salad, sandwiches, or noodles? Then, don’t let your rotisserie chicken last two hours before refrigerating it.
Our advice would be to chill your rotisserie chicken in an instant. Seal it with duty aluminum foil, airtight containers, or zip-lock storage bags.
And yes, you might want to place it in the lowest section of your fridge, away from the door. With this strategy, you can avoid sudden temperature changes, which would most likely make your rotisserie chicken spoil faster.
How Long Can Rotisserie Chicken Stay Out in the Freezer?
And yes, we already settled the mystery of how long the rotisserie chicken can stay inside the refrigerator. The next thing would be how long rotisserie chicken lasts in the freezer. And how you can know if it’s best to store this cooked chicken in the fridge or freezer.
Well, the excellent choice will always depend on you. If the idea of eating a rotisserie chicken the next day doesn’t sit right with you, then you might opt to go for the freezer. And as the saying goes, the sooner, the better.
If stored correctly, whether in an airtight food container or a freezer bag, the rotisserie chicken will stay of premium quality for up to four months. But it will still be safe beyond that time. If you want this cooked chicken in its best condition, you must consume it within four months.
Usually, if the rotisserie chicken stays long inside your freezer, it develops white spots. We call this thing a “freezer burn.” While the chicken is safe to consume, these tiny spots would tell you that the cooked meat has been lying in the freezer for so long.
So, if you catch some freezer-burnt spots on your rotisserie chicken, then maybe it’s high time for you to take it out, reheat, and consume it.
How Can You Tell if the Rotisserie Chicken is Already Spoiled?
There are signs we need to find out if the rotisserie chicken has already gone bad. Just take a moment, smell it, then touch it. A good rule of thumb tells us to look for the color of the meat. Fresh chicken is bright yellow; you will always find it tender and juicy.
If the cooked chicken releases a sour, rangy, ammonia-like, or off smell, you can assume it’s already spoiled. Another thing would be the presence of some molds with a fuzzy or fungi texture. Once you touch the rotten rotisserie chicken, you’ll feel it has a slimy texture.
In addition, discoloration showcases unappealing grey and green colors. While the chicken may appear dried and brittle, its texture may be rubbery or mushy.
When you see these fire signs, thaw the rotisserie chicken away from the freezer and discard it immediately. While one can reheat the cooked chicken, it won’t become safe to eat. While heat can kill bacteria on the outer surface, it doesn’t blow away the poisonous toxins inside.
Tips to Keep Rotisserie Chicken from Going Spoiled
We’re now familiar with the shelf life of the rotisserie chicken. But if you’re wondering how to extend its life in the fridge or the freezer, here are some tips that would save the day!
- Adding mixtures of onion and garlic powder would increase the shelf life of rotisserie chicken.
- It would be best to avoid overcooking the rotisserie chicken. That would make it dry or less flavorful.
- Have some spice rub to tenderize the chicken meat.
- Once it’s cooked, refrigerate or put the rotisserie chicken in the freezer immediately or within two hours.
- Cover or seal the rotisserie chicken tightly when you put it in the fridge. Doing this would help prevent contamination from other raw chicken or white meat stored inside your refrigerator.
We can all agree that rotisserie chicken would be one of our most fantastic favorite picks! After all, who would not fall in love with that dish?
But if you, your family, and friends can eat the rotisserie chicken in one go, there’s the fridge and freezer at your rescue! Never let the cooked chicken stay for more than two hours. Then, you can indulge and enjoy it for a second or third round!