Frozen Food Storage Chart: How Long Can You Freeze Foods For?

Freezer Storage Times

freezer-storage-chart

How long can you freeze food for before it’s no longer safe to eat? See this frozen food storage chart to find out whether or not you can freeze cheese, how long you can freeze chicken for, how long fruit lasts in the freezer, and much more.

This is a great chart for people who use the freezer often to store food for a long time. You might be surprised to find that you can freeze most foods much longer than you imagined.

This chart lists everything from raw meat to ready-to-eat desserts. We’ve included printable charts at the bottom of this page so you can even tape it to the side of your freezer!

NOTE: These times assume that the freezer temperature is maintained at 0°F (-18°C) or colder. The storage times are for quality only. Frozen foods remain safe almost indefinitely.

How long can you freeze cheese?

Product Store in Freezer
All cheeses, except those listed below 6 months
Cottage cheese, cream cheese, feta, goat, fresh mozzarella, Neufchâtel, Parmesan, processed cheese (opened) Not recommended

How long can you freeze dairy products?

Product Store in Freezer
Butter 6 to 9 months
Cream, half-and-half 4 months
Ice cream 1 to 2 months
Margarine (not diet) 12 months
Milk 3 months
Yogurt 1 to 2 months

How long can you freeze fish and seafood?

Product Store in Freezer
Clams, mussels, oysters, scallops, shrimp 3 to 6 months
Fatty fish (bluefish, mackerel, perch, salmon) 2 to 3 months
Lean fish (flounder, haddock, sole) 6 months

How long can you freeze fresh fruit?

Product Store in Freezer
All fruit (except those listed below) 10 to 12 months
Avocados, bananas 3 months
Citrus fruit 4 to 6 months
Fruit Juices 8 to 12 months

How long can you freeze fresh vegetables?

Product Store in Freezer
Artichokes, eggplant 6 to 8 months
Asparagus, rutabagas, turnips 8 to 10 months
Bamboo shoots, cabbage, celery, cucumbers, endive, radishes, salad greens, watercress Not recommended
Beans, beets, bok choy, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, carrots, cauliflower, corn, greens, kohlrabi, leeks, mushrooms, okra, onions, parsnips, peas, peppers, soybeans, spinach, summer squash 10 to 12 months
Tomatoes (overripe or sliced) 2 months

How long can you freeze meat?

Product Store in Freezer
Cooked 2 to 3
Ham, hot dogs, and lunch meats 1 to 2 months
Sausage, bacon 1 to 2 months
Uncooked, ground 3 to 4 months
Uncooked roasts, steaks, or chops 4 to 12 months
Wild game, uncooked 8 to 12 months

How long can you freeze poultry?

Product Store in Freezer
Cooked 4 months
Giblets, uncooked 3 to 4 months
Uncooked 12 months
Uncooked parts 9 months

How long can you freeze other foods?

Product Store in Freezer
Cakes 4 to 6 months
Casseroles 2 to 3 months
Cookie dough 2 months
Cookies 3 months
Fruit pies, baked 2 to 4 months
Fruit pies, unbaked 8 months
Pastry, unbaked 2 months
Pumpkin or chiffon pies 1 months
Quick breads 2 months
Raw egg yolks, whites 12 months
Soups and stews 2 to 3 months
Yeast breads 6 months
Yeast dough 2 weeks

Note: When freezing liquids or foods with liquid, be sure to leave space in the container for expansion.

–adapted from Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA

Get some tips for freezing various foods, and learn the best way to freeze blueberries!

Find out how to freeze other foods, such as cookies, corn, and spinach.

Source: 

Adapted from Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA

Reader Comments

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Whole Frozen Chicken

Thank you so much for this information as I have had the Chicken for at least 3 or 4 months.
So this tells me it will still be good to use for Thanksgiving. Again I thank you for all your great information. I have bookmarked this information for future reference.

frozen chicken

Thanks for taking a moment to comment, Debra. Your chicken should be fine to cook and enjoy for Thanksgiving. Happy holidays!

Freezer Storage (all articles pertaining to this subject)

thank you much for this article....i now have the chart in my phone in a special file so that I can now refer to it when needed!

storing the storage chart

Thank you for considering this information “special,” Shellie! We appreciate your interest in the Almanac and Almanac.com! Happy days—

Freezing food chart

What is the method of wrapping food? Any difference using a vacuum seal?

how to wrap food to be frozen

We are going to align with the US Dept of Agriculture on this one: Proper packaging helps maintain quality and prevent freezer burn. It is safe to freeze meat or poultry directly in its original packaging, however this type of wrap is permeable to air and quality may diminish over time. For prolonged storage, overwrap these packages as you would any food for long-term storage. It is not necessary to rinse meat and poultry. Freeze unopened vacuum packages as is. If you notice that a package has accidentally been torn or has opened while food is in the freezer, the food is still safe to use; merely overwrap or rewrap it.

About vacuum packaging, we defer to the National Center for Home Food Preservation: http://nchfp.uga.edu/publications/uga/vacuum_packaging.html

i like this page

i like this page

Vacuum Sealer

In most cases, food that you bring home is not eaten all of it right away. This forces you to have effective means of storage to maximize the flavor and nutritional value of the food. You also don’t want to eat food that stale or not fresh.

I was recently cleaning out

I was recently cleaning out my freezer and came across some steaks and pork chops that I remember buying over 18 months ago from a meat market. They've been frozen the whole time. Are they still good to eat?

The recommendation for

The recommendation for uncooked meat is to discard after 12 months.

how long will bullhead keep

how long will bullhead keep in the freezer and if its been at least five years will it still be ok to eat?

The recommendation for

The recommendation for catfish is to discard after 8 months in the freezer.

I vacuum pack my beef as soon

I vacuum pack my beef as soon as I pick it up . Already cut wrapped and frozen. Put it in the freezer.my ground beef lasts at least 2 yrs and the whole cuts I don't know how long found a roast buried in the freezer that was 5 yrs old and it was perfect!

I defrosted a pork chop in

I defrosted a pork chop in the refrigerator and forgot about it for two days. Is this pork chop safe to eat. It smells fine and is not slimy. Help! Thank you.

After thawing a properly

After thawing a properly frozen pork chop in the refrigerator, it should remain safe to eat within 3 to 5 days. You might be interested in the following publication from the USDA:
http://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/w...

May I ask what method was

May I ask what method was used to freeze these cuts of meat? i.e., freezer paper and plastic wrap, vacuum sealer, freezer bags, tin foil, etc? Thanks

I made a pot roast from a

I made a pot roast from a chuck roast that had been in my freezer, uncooked, at zero degrees, for SIX YEARS! Also made a corned beef that had been frozen for five years. By the way, they were delicious!

the corned beef stayed there

the corned beef stayed there for too long its freeze life was from 2-4 years....

As far as I'm concerned, if

As far as I'm concerned, if it tasted delicious and didn't make anyone sick the freezer life is at least what it was! I had a Stouffer's frozen lasagna in the same freezer for 10 years and it too was just like new. I don't know where you got your figures, but mine were from personal experience.