How Long Does Pasta Last in the Fridge – How to Keep Your Food Fresh and Tasty

Pasta in Fridge

How long does pasta last in the fridge? I see that you’ve cooked more than you can eat. Was it a party leftover or do you just love pasta so much that you need to store some in case the cravings come? The truth is the length of time that you can keep pasta in the fridge depends on some factors that you need to consider.

Storage, ingredients, and the cooking method play an important role in making your pasta last longer in the fridge. If you like to experiment and find out more about it, then let’s learn the basics!

How long does pasta last in the fridge?

If you store your plain cooked pasta the right way, it will last a maximum of 7 days in the fridge and a maximum of 8 months in the freezer. However, with sauce, it is advisable to use it in 4 days’ time. Beyond this length of time, it is better to dispose of the pasta before it becomes dangerous to your health. The cold temperature prevents mold growth and reduces the chance of spoilage.

Do you know that even the pasta recipe matters when storing in the fridge? Don’t be surprised; A sprinkle of cheese or a bit of sauce can cause a difference. Hence, it is essential to learn some techniques to ensure that your pasta will not go to waste.

How to store pasta the correct way?

Whether it’s leftovers or freshly cooked pasta, there should be a correct way to store it and preserve the freshness so you can eat it later. Take note of the little facts since it will determine how your pasta will turn out after storing it in the fridge.

Plain cooked pasta

Cooked pasta left to sit out in the open for more than a couple of hours will turn bad quicker than expected. If possible, pack the excess pasta right away after cooking and seal it well. You will need a close-fitting lid to store it in or a zip-top bag. A bit of butter or oil is required too.

  1. ​First, drain excess water properly and run it with cold water to lessen the stickiness.
  2. You need to place the pasta in the container box or bag and drizzle it with oil. Any type of oil will do, although olive oil is my favorite when it comes to pasta dishes. Another way is to blend a portion of melted butter to the pasta ensuring that it’s fully coated to prevent it from sticking together. Make sure not to put too much.
  3. Never forget to let your freshly cooked pasta cool down first before sealing the lid.
  4. Ensure that you closed the lid tightly to prevent air from coming in. It’s best to use a container box that is a perfect size for the amount of pasta you need to store. This way, there is no extra space for air. The minute it’s exposed to air, the moisture is tempting for bacteria to thrive in. When using a bag, squeeze the air out first before sealing. It’s best though if you have a vacuum sealer.

Pasta with Sauce

You can choose as you please. Either store pasta with sauce in the fridge separately or pre-mixed. I prefer storing it separately for mine. At least, I can use pure pasta with another recipe when needed.

Pasta chilled in the fridge is also suitable for salads, casseroles, and frittata. You can use the pasta directly from the fridge.

Besides, storing pasta with its sauce can make the quality soggy after a while. However, if you plan to eat it the following day, storing it together with the sauce is perfect. By then, the sauce must have penetrated the noodles making the dish more flavorful.

The storing steps used for cooked plain pasta is also applicable to pasta with sauce.

Do you know that cooked pasta with eggs, tomato sauce, and cheese spoils faster than those without? Therefore, watch out for these ingredients and take a little precaution.

Here is a video to storing cooked pasta:

General Rules:

Store Pasta

Refrigerators are a considerable help when storing cooked food. This is indeed a significant contribution to the kitchen in general. If you’re dependent on the fridge, you must keep in mind the following general rules.

  • Maintain cleanliness in your kitchen. You don’t want your food to be contaminated with bacteria while cooking.
  • It’s best to store cooked food in the fridge right away. (don’t let it sit at room temperature for more than two hours)
  • Choose a shallow container box with a tight-fitting lid or a zip-top bag. The lesser the moisture content, the lesser risk of bacterial or mold contamination.
  • Check CircleAs much as possible, seal the food tightly to prevent air from getting inside. Besides, doing so prevents the absorption of other odors present inside the fridge.
  • Check CircleStore in small portions for convenience. It would be easier for you to reheat the dish for just the right amount that you want to eat.
  • Check CircleAlways put a label each time you store. Indicate the exact date of storage and the type of dish for easy monitoring of the expiry date. I recommend practicing the FIFO (First in First Out) system. Use a permanent marker when writing the date.
  • Check CircleDon’t forget to always check the quality of the dish before eating after taking it out from the fridge.
  • Check CircleOnce taken out from the fridge, NEVER store it back. It’s best to take only the amount that you can consume.

If you’re interested in similar topics, be sure to read our related blog post.

How to tell if the pasta has gone bad or spoiled?

You should know when your pasta is no longer safe to eat. Otherwise, your health would be at stake. Pasta goes bad quickly when stored improperly. Unless you are certain, never go the extent of tasting it. Hence, never gamble your health by practicing proper hygiene and abiding by food safety tips.

What is the best way to detect rotten pasta than using your natural senses? These are signs that you can no longer eat the pasta. If you notice any of these, discard your pasta right away.

Take note of the indications below.

  • Bad smell
  • Discoloration because of molds
  • Change of texture
  • Google PlayDull and slimy appearance
  • Google PlaySour taste

Do you know that when pasta is stored longer, the original flavor also changes? The longer it is stored, the lesser it will taste good.

How to seal food air-free without using a vacuum sealer?

I consider tight sealing important when storing food in the fridge. I always find it difficult to take the air out from the container or pack. Cooked or not, we can use this helpful technique. Watch, and I hope you’ll take it as useful.

How Long Do Different Type of Pasta Lasts In The Fridge?

Similar to other pre-cooked foods and leftovers, cooked pasta needs to be stored in the refrigerator.

This is because cooked pasta contains moisture that can eventually lead to mold growth, and colder temperatures help slow down the spoilage process.

It’s useful to know the duration different types and preparations of pasta can be expected to last in the fridge before they need to be thrown away.

The estimated fridge-lives of various pasta types are primarily based on the main ingredient – for example, whether it’s made from lentils, wheat, or includes eggs.

Here’s the approximate duration some of the most popular pasta types can be expected to last in the fridge:

  • Homemade fresh wheat pasta: 4-5 days
  • Store-bought fresh wheat pasta: 1-3 days
  • Cooked wheat pasta: 3-5 days
  • Lentil-, bean-, or pea-based pasta: 3-5 days
  • Gluten-free pasta: 3-5 days
  • Tortellini or other stuffed pasta: 3-5 days
  • Lasagna or other cooked pasta with sauce: 5 days

Keep in mind that these are general guidelines, and individual dishes may vary, but most cooked pasta can be assumed to last for less than one week.

It’s essential to inspect your pasta and ensure there are no signs of spoilage before consuming it.

Reheating Your Pasta

What else comes next after storing but reheating? Reheating pasta is easy in three different methods. You can use the microwave, cooktop, and oven. What is convenient for you?

  • Oven: Reheating pasta in the oven only takes 20 minutes at 350 deg. F. Makes sure to place it in an oven-safe bowl and cover with foil.
  • Microwave: Place your pasta in a microwave-safe bowl and toss in a splash of water before reheating. It would only take a minute or two before it’s done.
  • Sauté on the stove: My usual choice is either the microwave or the oven. Reheating the pasta using the stove is also fast, but I need to wash the pan too. However, this method the pasta soaks up the flavor of the sauce. Therefore, if you want a better-tasting reheated pasta, this is your choice.

To learn more about how to reheat shrimp, check out our previous article.


Can I store uncooked pasta in the fridge?

Uncooked pasta, whether it’s dry or fresh, does not need to be stored in the fridge. Dry pasta can be stored in a cool, dark, and dry place like a pantry or cupboard, while fresh pasta should be kept in the original packaging and can be stored in the freezer for up to 2-3 months. If you’ve opened a package of fresh pasta but haven’t cooked it all, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and store it in the fridge for up to 2-3 days.

How do I reheat pasta without it becoming mushy?

To reheat pasta without making it mushy, try one of the following methods:

  • Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C) and place the pasta in an oven-safe dish. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for about 20 minutes, or until heated through.
  • Microwave: Place the pasta in a microwave-safe dish and sprinkle a little water on top to help prevent drying out. Cover the dish with a microwave-safe lid or another microwave-safe plate and heat on high for 1-2 minutes, or until warmed through. Stir the pasta halfway through the heating time to ensure even heating.
  • Stovetop: Heat a small amount of sauce or oil in a pan over medium heat, then add the pasta and gently toss until warmed through. This method works best for pasta that’s not mixed with sauce, as it allows you to control the moisture level and prevent sogginess.

How can I prevent pasta from sticking together when storing it in the fridge?

To prevent cooked pasta from sticking together when storing it in the fridge, follow these steps:

  1. Drain the pasta well after cooking and rinse it under cold water to stop the cooking process and remove excess starch.
  2. Toss the pasta with a small amount of oil, such as olive oil or vegetable oil, to create a thin barrier that will prevent sticking. Alternatively, you can toss it with a bit of melted butter.
  3. Store the pasta in a well-sealed container or zip-top bag, making sure to remove as much air as possible before sealing.

Can I freeze cooked pasta?

Yes, you can freeze cooked pasta for up to 8 months. To freeze pasta, follow these steps:

  1. Allow the pasta to cool completely.
  2. Toss the pasta with a small amount of oil or melted butter to prevent sticking.
  3. Spread the pasta out in a single layer on a baking sheet or tray, then place it in the freezer for a few hours to allow it to freeze individually.
  4. Transfer the frozen pasta to an airtight container or freezer-safe zip-top bag and label it with the date and type of pasta.
  5. When you’re ready to eat the pasta, reheat it directly from frozen using one of the reheating methods mentioned earlier in this FAQ section.

Can I store cooked pasta with meat sauce in the fridge?

Yes, you can store cooked pasta with meat sauce in the fridge. However, it’s important to note that the meat sauce will cause the pasta to spoil more quickly than if it were stored separately. It is generally recommended to consume pasta with meat sauce within 3-4 days of storing it in the fridge. Remember to store it in an airtight container to maintain the best quality and prevent any cross-contamination with other foods in the fridge.


It’s very rare to find someone who hates pasta. With the countless delicious recipes, we can make out of pasta, one should end up to be your favorite.  In fact, it’s one of my comfort food. How long does pasta last in the fridge?

Remember that you should not store your cooked pasta for more than 7 days in the fridge. Well, honestly, in my fridge, it won’t take that long. Once I knew there’s pasta in the fridge, I can’t sleep unless I ate it all. How about you?