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Storage Chart for Purchased Items

Plan ahead and you can have a food supply that won't spoil before you've had a chance to use it.

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Stock up on necessities.

By keeping the pantry, refrigerator, and freezer well stocked with commonly used ingredients, you can cut down on those last-minute trips to the store. Purchase products by "sell by" or expiration dates, and follow these guidelines for storing them.

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Product To Store: Refrigerate (40°F) up to: Freeze (0°F) up to:
Dairy Products
Butter Refrigerate in original packaging; to freeze, overwrap with moisture- and vaporproof wrap. 1 month 6 months
Buttermilk Refrigerate in original packaging. To freeze, transfer to freezer containers; allow for head-space. 7 days 3 months
Cheese, cottage,and ricotta Refrigerate in original packaging. If no date given, use within 5 days of purchase. Use by date on container. Do not freeze
Sour cream Refrigerate in original packaging. 7 days Do not freeze
Yogurt Refrigerate in original packaging; transfer to freezer container to freeze. 7 days 1 month
Eggs
Hard-cooked, in shells Refrigerate. 7 days Do not freeze
Whites Refrigerate in tightly covered containers; transfer to freezer container to freeze. 4 days 1 year
Whole, beaten Beat whites and yolks together and place in freezer container Not applicable 1 year
Whole, in shells Store whole eggs in carton placed in coldest part of refrigerator. Do not wash; do not store 5 weeks after Do not freeze
Yolks Refrigerate unbroken raw yolks covered with water in a tightly covered container 2 days Do not freeze
Meats, Poultry, Fish
Bacon Refrigerate in original wrapping; overwrap in freezer wrap to freeze. 7 days 1 month
Sausage, raw Same as bacon, above 1 to 2 days 2 months
Sausage, smoked links/patties Refrigerate in original wrapping; overwrap in freezer wrap to freeze. 7 days 1 month
Ham, fully cooked, whole Wrap in appropriate refrigerator wrap or in moisture- and vaporproof wrap to freeze. 7 days 1 month
Ham, canned (labeled "keep refrigerated") Chill, unopened, in original can. After opening, wrap in appropriate wrap. 6 months (unopened) 1 month after opening (Do not freeze in can)
Hot Dogs Refrigerate in original wrapping After opening, wrap in appropriate wrap. 2 weeks (unopened) 1 week (opened) 1 month
Lunch Meats Refrigerate in original wrapping. After opening, wrap in appropriate wrap. 2 weeks (unopened) 3 to 5 days (opened) 1 month
Beef, uncooked roasts and steaks Refrigerate in original wrapping; overwrap in freezer wrap to freeze. 3 to 5 days 1 year
Lamb, uncooked roasts and chops Refrigerate in original wrapping; overwrap in freezer wrap to freeze. 3 to 5 days 9 months
Pork, uncooked roasts and chops. Refrigerate in original wrapping; overwrap in freezer wrap to freeze. 3 to 5 days 6 months
Ground beef, lamb, pork, veal Refrigerate in original wrapping; overwrap in freezer wrap to freeze. 1 to 2 days 4 months
Poultry (chicken or turkey), uncooked, whole Refrigerate in original wrapping; overwrap in freezer wrap to freeze. 1 to 2 days 1 year
Poultry (chicken or turkey), uncooked pieces Refrigerate in original wrapping; overwrap in freezer wrap to freeze. 1 to 2 days 9 months
Ground Turkey Refrigerate in original wrapping; overwrap in freezer wrap to freeze. 1 to 2 days 4 months
Fish Store in moisture- and vaporproof wrap in coldest part of refrigerator. 1 to 2 days 3 months
Produce
Garlic Store in a cool, dark, dry place; do not refrigerate or freeze. Store whole bulbs up to 8 weeks; individual cloves 3 to 10 days. Discard shriveled, discolored, or dried-out cloves.
Pantry Staples
Instant chicken or beef granules Store in a cool, dry place or refrigerate. Check package for expiration date.
Olive oil Store in a cool, dark place for up to 6 months or refrigerate up to 1 year.
Cooking oil Store at room temperature for up to 6 months.
Pasta and rice Store in airtight containers in a cool, dry place. Store brown rice up to 6 months, dried pasta and long grain white rice indefinitely.

Easy Tips for an Organized Freezer

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