Storage and Safety Tips for Thanksgiving Leftovers

Thanksgiving is here! Can you believe it? Today we will be surrounded by turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans, rolls, and so much gravy! Despite our best efforts to completely stuff ourselves, there are always a ton of Thanksgiving leftovers. Cue the turkey sandwiches with cranberry sauce!  Here at Para, we are all about the Thanksgiving leftovers and making sure we store them quickly and correctly after Thanksgiving dinner so that we can have days worth of Thanksgiving leftovers to enjoy at home.

Thanksgiving Leftovers Storage and Safety Tips

Want to make your Thanksgiving favorites last more than just a day? Here are some simple storage and safety tips to follow so you can do just that!

Featured by Para: Image of a set Thanksgiving table. Sharing easy ways to store Thanksgiving leftovers so you can enjoy them for days and even months to come from!

Make sure you have the right storage supplies

You will have different amounts of leftovers with each Thanksgiving dish. So it’s important to make sure that you have variety of storage supplies for your guests to put their Thanksgiving leftovers in. There are lots of different storage items out there, but we recommend the following supplies.

  • Quart and gallon size freezer bags
  • Stackable and microwave safe storage containers in 1 cup, 2 cup, and 4 cup sizes
  • Aluminum foil
  • Plastic wrap
  • Permanent marker
  • Storage labels

Cool foods down quickly

The best way to get your Thanksgiving leftovers to cool down quickly is by placing it in more shallow containers. You’ll also want to make sure to not stack your containers in the fridge because that will trap in the heat and slow down the cooling process.

Featured by Para: Image of a Thanksgiving turkey on a table. Sharing easy ways to store Thanksgiving leftovers so you can enjoy them for days to come from!

Never leave stuffing in your turkey

In fact, you shouldn’t put it in there at all. When it comes to turkey,putting stuffing inside of it can be super dangerous. Because, as the turkey around it cooks, juices that may contain salmonella bacteria soak into the stuffing. Which means that the stuffing needs to be cooked to a minimum of 165 degrees F in order to be safe. However, getting the stuffing to this temperature usually means overcooking the turkey; and nobody likes eating overcooked turkey. The way we see it, stuffing should be cooked separately.

Properly store your Thanksgiving leftovers

Thanksgiving leftovers being stored in the fridge are good for 4-5 days. If you are freezing anything, they are good for up to 3 months. Have a hard time remembering when you stored your food?  Labeling your containers and Ziploc bags with what’s in them as well as the date you stored them is a great way to help you keep track of when your Thanksgiving leftovers are no longer good.

Featured by Para: Image of Thanksgiving leftovers and turkeys. Sharing easy ways to store Thanksgiving leftovers so you can enjoy them for days and even months to come from!

How do you use your Thanksgiving leftovers? We are always looking for new ideas. So we’d love to know! Also, if you’re in charge of cooking the turkey this year, make sure to check out our recent post on how to make the best turkey stock.

Happy Thanksgiving!



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