Skip to content

How long does tuna salad last in the fridge? If you’re wondering as to how long tuna salad lasts in the fridge, the exact answer largely depends on the extent of the storage conditions. It is best to ensure tuna salad refrigeration within two hours of purchasing or preparing.

How long does tuna salad last in the fridge?

U.S. Gov’t Food Safety Department says 3-5 days at 40º or below (where your fridge should be set). The site also says that tuna salad does not freeze well. – So there you have it – The short answer.

In order to maximize tuna salad shelf life and to consume it safely afterwards, ensure that the tuna is refrigerated in an airtight container. When it is properly stored, the tuna salad should last for anywhere between 3 and 5 days inside the refrigerator.

If you’re going to leave it in the open at room temperature, know that if it is left in the open for more than 2 hours, it has to be discarded. This is because bacteria start to grow rapidly between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit.

Cold Food Storage Chart

Follow the guidelines below for storing food in the refrigerator and freezer. The short time limits for home-refrigerated foods will help keep them from spoiling or becoming dangerous to eat. The guidelines for freezer storage are for quality only—frozen foods stored continuously at 0 °F or below can be kept indefinitely.

Download Table as PDF

Food Type Refrigerator
(40 °F or below)
(0 °F or below)
Salad Egg, chicken, ham, tuna and macaroni salads 3 to 4 days Does not freeze well
Hot dogs Opened package 1 week 1 to 2 months
Unopened package 2 weeks 1 to 2 months
Luncheon meat Opened package or deli sliced 3 to 5 days 1 to 2 months
Unopened package 2 weeks 1 to 2 months
Bacon and sausage Bacon 1 week 1 month
Sausage, raw, from chicken, turkey, pork, or beef 1 to 2 days 1 to 2 months
Sausage, fully cooked, from chicken, turkey, pork, or beef 1 week 1 to 2 months
Hamburger and other ground meats Hamburger, ground beef, turkey, veal, pork, lamb, and mixtures of them 1 to 2 days 3 to 4 months
Fresh beef, veal, lamb, and pork Steaks 3 to 5 days 4 to 12 months
Chops 3 to 5 days 4 to 12 months
Roasts 3 to 5 days 4 to 12 months
Ham Fresh, uncured, uncooked 3 to 5 days 6 months
Fresh, uncured, cooked 3 to 4 days 3 to 4 months
Cured, cook-before-eating or uncooked 5 to 7 days or “use by” date 3 to 4 months
Fully-cooked, vacuum-sealed at plant, unopened “Use by” date 1 to 2 months
Cooked, store-wrapped, whole 1 week 1 to 2 months
Cooked, store-wrapped, slices, half, or spiral cut 3 to 4 days 1 to 2 months
Country ham, cooked 1 week 1 month
Canned, labeled “Keep Refrigerated,” unopened 6 to 9 months Do not freeze
Canned, shelf-stable, opened

Note: An unopened, shelf-stable, canned ham can be stored at room temperature for 6-9 months.

5 to 14 days 1 to 2 months
Prosciutto, Parma or Serrano ham, dry Italian or Spanish type, cut 2 to 3 months 1 month
Fresh Poultry Chicken or turkey, whole 1 to 2 days 1 year
Chicken or turkey, pieces 1 to 2 days 9 months
Eggs Raw eggs in shell 3 to 5 weeks Do not freeze. Beat yolks and whites together, then freeze.
Raw egg whites and yolks Note: yolks do not freeze well 2 to 4 days 12 months
Raw egg accidentally frozen in shell Use immediately after thawing Keep frozen, then
refrigerate to thaw
Hard-cooked eggs 1 week Do not freeze
Egg substitutes, liquid
1 week Do not freeze
Egg substitutes, liquid
3 days Do not freeze
Egg substitutes, frozen, unopened After thawing, 1 week or refer to “use by” date 12 months
Egg substitutes, frozen, opened After cooking, 3 to 4 days or refer to “use by” date Do not freeze
Casseroles with eggs 3 to 4 days After baking, 2 to 3 months
Eggnog, commercial 3 to 5 days 6 months
Eggnog, homemade 2 to 4 days Do not freeze
Pies: Pumpkin or pecan 3 to 4 days After baking, 1 to 2 months
Pies: Custard and chiffon 3 to 4 days Do not freeze
Quiche with filling 3 to 5 days After baking, 2 to 3 months
Soups & Stews Vegetable or meat added 3 to 4 days 2 to 3 months
Leftovers Cooked meat or poultry 3 to 4 days 2 to 6 months
Chicken nuggets or patties 3 to 4 days 1 to 3 months
Pizza 3 to 4 days 1 to 2 months


  • How long does tuna salad last in the fridge? The precise answer to that question depends to a large extent on storage conditions – refrigerate tuna salad within two hours of preparing or purchasing.
  • To maximize the shelf life of tuna salad for safety and quality, refrigerate the tuna salad in airtight containers.
  • Properly stored, tuna salad will last for 3 to 5 days in the refrigerator.
  • How long can tuna salad be left at room temperature? Bacteria grow rapidly at temperatures between 40 °F and 140 °F; tuna salad should be discarded if left out for more than 2 hours at room temperature.
  • How to tell if tuna salad is bad? If tuna salad develops an off odor, flavor or appearance, or if mold appears, it should be discarded; do not taste first.

If you’re unsure whether to discard the tuna salad or not, do not taste it as this can be harmful to your health. Instead, be on the lookout for bad odor, and bad appearance, or mold.

More often than not, the mayonnaise and the meat in the tuna salad, which makes up the majority of it, tends to spoil it more quickly than other types of food. This is why it cannot be kept for longer periods of time in the refrigerator.

As a rule, any salad that contains mayonnaise shouldn’t be allowed to stay in the fridge for more than 5 days. If it is not sealed properly, the time it would take to become spoilt drops down further.

Since meat, chicken, and especially fish are highly perishable foods, they cannot be preserved for long once you open the can. One can hope to extend its preservation by a day if one keeps it in the coldest part of the refrigerator and by applying a lot of vinegar or lemon.

Another way to extend it would be to preserve it. However, tuna salad does not smoke well, freeze well, or pickle well. Furthermore, it can be extremely complicated to can it under the proper conditions to preserve it again.

Other sandwiches and salads that can be kept in the refrigerator for a longer period include lunchmeat. A lunchmeat package that has not yet been opened can be kept in the refrigerator for as long as two weeks.

However, if it has been opened, it too, like the tuna salads, should be removed after 3 to 5 days. It can be stored in the freezer, whether opened or unopened, for one to two months.

The same does not apply to tuna salad and it should never be stored in the freezer. This is because the eggs in the mayonnaise, when frozen, can change the consistency of the salad in a short period of time.

Can Dogs eat Smoked Salmon?

Fig Jam Jamie Oliver

How long does tuna salad last?

As mentioned earlier, tuna salad should not be consumed after 2 hours in the open or 5 days in the fridge even if there isn’t any apparent damage done. This is because, though it may not seem like it, the bacteria take root and can make you very sick.

Is This Really Necessary?

Once ingredients such as mayo are left out at room temperature, bacteria can grow quickly – faster than most people realize. Meats such as tuna fish are the same way, which is why the answer to the question, how long does tuna salad last in fridge, is no more than five days. Indeed, tuna does not last long thanks to all of the ingredients inside of it, but fortunately, most people enjoy it so much that eating it within three to five days is never a problem.

Related Text

I used to do a lot of recruiting and interviewing for my previous job and one person casually brought his lunch to the interview, mentioning he had a busy day. The only hard thing about this tuna fish salad recipe with egg is not eating all of it with a spoon. I like to use a mix of the two for my tune egg salad recipe, so that I get a balance of price and texture. The optional ingredients are lemon juice, mustard, and pickle relish. Eggs stay good in the refrigerator for three to five days, when in fact they stay good for three to five weeks. To cut on calories substitute mayo with Greek yogurt and use tuna canned in water. Tuna salad is a favorite due to its nutritious benefits as well as its ease of preparation. If you leave your tuna salad at room temperature for more than an hour, you risk food poisoning since the mayo goes bad pretty quickly, so better throw it in the garbage. So it is best to discard it as it can cause food poisoning. As a lover of all things tuna fish, I am always looking for ways to step up my tuna sandwich game.  The best way to store a tuna sandwich in the fridge is to put it in airtight freezer containers. The main ingredients are canned tuna, mayonnaise, red onion, garlic, salt, black pepper, and celery. What Kind Of Canned Tuna Is The Best Choice For Tuna Salad? There are two kinds of canned tuna that you can purchase at your supermarket. Eggs and mayo both lose their texture after freezing. Today, canned tuna remains popular. I don’t remember who first said this but remember, “If in doubt, throw it out.” Just like chicken saladtuna casserole will last up to 5 days if properly refrigerated at or below 40°F. The presence of Clostridium botulinum or Salmonella, to my knowledge, produces no noticeable odor or flavor. Anyway, she came in from cooking on the grill and said. Practicing proper hygiene and food safety techniques will help prevent foodborne illness. The only hard thing about this tuna fish salad recipe with egg is not eating all of it with a spoon. In case you are on a diet, you can always substitute mayo with mashed avocado or hummus. I like to use Persian cucumbers since they have less seeds and moisture and tend to retain their crunch and firm texture. Just make sure to choose a mustard that is Whole30/Paleo friendly since not all Dijon mustard follows the diets. You don’t have to put eggs in tuna salad recipes, but you can. Green Onion – I can never get enough green onion, and it goes perfectly with this simple tuna salad recipe.

How long does tuna salad last in the fridge