How Long Does Rice Last?

Rice is the most essential staple meal for a big portion of the global human population, accounting for more than a fifth of all calories consumed globally. 

Rice, like pasta, comes in a multitude of varieties (white, brown, wild, short-grain, long-grain, and so on) and is sometimes spiced.

It’s no surprise that billions of people consume it on a regular basis due to its inexpensive cost, high-calorie density, long shelf life, and great nutritional characteristics. Rice, on the other hand, is not all made equal. So, how long will white, brown, or wild rice keep you going? 

When it comes to rice, how long does it last?  Rice’s shelf life is affected by a variety of things, including the sort of rice, whether it’s cooked or not, packaging, and storage. 

Rice has a shelf life when properly maintained

Raw white rice lasts for 4-5 years in the pantry, raw brown rice lasts for 6-8 months at room temperature and 8-12 months in the refrigerator, while raw minute rice lasts for 4-5 years in the pantry.

On the other hand, cooked white rice lasts less than a day at room temperature, 5-7 days in the refrigerator, and 6-8 months in the freezer. Cooked brown rice lasts less than a day at room temperature, 4-5 days in the refrigerator, and 6-8 months in the freezer. And cooked wild rice lasts 5-7 days in the fridge and 6-8 months in the freezer.

When sealed in an oxygen-free container at 40°F or below, polished white rice can be preserved for up to 30 years. Of course, if food is not stored properly, it will last for a shorter period of time. But keep in mind that brown and white rice, like many other grains, have a best by date rather than an expiration date. As a result, you can safely utilize them past their best-by date.

How do you know when rice goes bad?

It’s difficult to detect if the rice has gone bad because it has an endless shelf life if kept dry. The existence of the rice weevil, a little reddish-brown beetle, is one thing to keep an eye out for. If you notice them moving in your rice, you should throw them out and disinfect the container as well as the shelves around it. 

On the other side, it’s easier to recognize expired brown rice. Because of its necessary fatty acids, brown rice can turn oily and have a rancid odor as they oxidize. 

Cooked rice that has gone bad will lose its texture as it hardens, allowing mold to form. Of course, there are some health hazards linked with rotting goods, so always remember to practice food safety and consume your food before its expiration date!

How should rice be stored to extend its shelf life? 

It’s best to keep it in an airtight container in the pantry or anywhere else that is cool and dark with a consistent temperature. To keep moisture and other impurities out, it should be refrigerated in an airtight container once prepared. Cooked food should not be left out at room temperature for more than two hours to ensure good food safety. 

If you utilize an oxygen-free (oxygen is the source of freezer burn) freezer-safe container, you can freeze your dry rice for a long time while keeping its flavor. Cooked rice can be frozen, however, this is not recommended because it will become mushy when reheated.

Healthier consumption, saving money, and helping the environment by reducing waste are just a few of the advantages of effective food storage.

How long does rice last at room temperature?

Dry/raw rice should only be kept at room temperature. Rice can last a very while on the counter, white rice and wild rice can both last for 4-5 years at room temperature, while brown rice can last for 6-8 months at room temperature.

How long does rice last in the fridge?

Dry rice doesn’t need to be refrigerated at all, since they are capable of lasting for years on the counter, all except for brown rice. Brown rice has a lifespan of 6-8 months on the counter, hence it can be refrigerated for about 8-12 months. 

Cooked rice on the other hand can be refrigerated, In fact, they must be refrigerated if they aren’t going to be eaten the same they were cooked. Cooked white rice lasts 5-7 days in the fridge, cooked wild rice lasts about the same time as well. While cooked brown rice lasts for 4-d days in the fridge.

Can you freeze rice?

Can you freeze raw rice? The answer is no.

Can you freeze cooked rice? Of course! Even if you expect to use it within a few days, it’s preferable to store it in the refrigerator. This is because uncooked rice contains Bacillus Cereus, a spore-forming microbe. The bacteria in the rice are eliminated after it is cooked, but the spores are heat resistant and will remain in the rice. 

When cooked rice is stored for an extended period of time, bacteria can re-grow, resulting in food poisoning. However, freezing the rice stops bacteria from forming, making it a safer alternative even for short-term preservation. Rice of all kinds, including white, brown, and even fried rice, freezes nicely (containing meat and veggies). Cooking rice in bulk and freezing it for later use might be a game-changer when it comes to meal planning.

How to Store Cooked Rice in the Freezer?

1. Spread Rice on Baking Sheet to Cool

Spread your freshly cooked rice in a uniform layer on a baking sheet, flattening it out with a wooden spoon or spatula. Allow the rice to cool for about 20 minutes on the baking sheet. To expedite the chilling process, place the baking sheet in the refrigerator. 

2. Place in Freezer Bag

Scoop the rice into freezer-safe bags and label them with the date, kind, and serving size (12 cups cooked rice = one serving). 

3. Put the Freezer on

Put the rice bags in the freezer. To save space in the freezer, put the bags one on top of the other and flatten them to remove excess air.

How long does it take to freeze rice?

A  couple of hours will do just fine.

How long does rice last in the freezer?

Cooked rice will last for about 6-8 months in the freezer.

Best way to store rice?

Store cooked rice in the fridge or freezer, depending on how soon you will eat it. Leave raw rice on the counter, however, you may keep brown rice in the fridge for extra preservation.


Writer at, love experiments and verifying facts.

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