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There is no denying that canned tuna is very popular in many parts of the world. 

In the US, it is the second most popular seafood after shrimp. Between canned and pouched tuna, Americans alone eat about 1 billion pounds each year.

I used to have a tuna salad sandwich for breakfast, sometimes lunch. It is a simple yet delicious dish. Yet, the drawback of this dish is its short usage time.

With that in mind, you might be wondering, “How long is tuna salad good for?” or “How long does tuna salad last in the fridge?”

In this article, I will help you answer those questions. Scroll down right now!

How Long Does Tuna Salad Last in the Fridge? 

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Tuna salad should last three to five days if stored properly.

According to the USDA, tuna salad should last three to five days if stored properly in your refrigerator (40°F or less).

I recommend not storing your tuna salad in your fridge’s door. Instead, storing it on a shelf in a colder part of your fridge is wise. You should also prepare a freezer thermometer to monitor the fridge temp.

It is wise to refrigerate tuna salad in an airtight container to prevent the absorption of odors from other foods and vice versa.

How Long Can You Keep Tuna Salad?

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You can store tuna salad in the refrigerator for three to five days.

It is alright to store tuna salad (store-bought or homemade) in the refrigerator for three to five days. However, consuming this dish is no longer safe if you leave it for longer than two hours at room temperature.

Although tuna salad will not be safe to consume after 5 days of storage in the refrigerator, sometimes you will have to throw it out sooner for safety reasons. Otherwise, you could end up with food poisoning.

If your tuna salad contains yogurt or any other dairy product that tends to separate, it will probably go bad after two to three days. The same goes for homemade salad dressings.

On the other hand, if you use a dressing that is sold in stores, such as ranch or mayonnaise, your dish most likely will not separate. As a result, your salad would retain its quality for five days as expected, as long as you store it properly.

How To Store Your Tuna Salad?

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It is best to refrigerate your tuna salad in an airtight container.

It’s wise to refrigerate your tuna salad in an airtight container, whether homemade or store-bought. Also, you put your salad on the back of the shelf of the refrigerator.

Next, if you’ve determined that you won’t be able to finish your salad in one sitting, it’s always essential to use a clean spoon to scoop up as much as you want before putting the rest in your fridge.

Can We Freeze Our Tuna Salad? 

Freezing tuna salad is safe. But is frozen tuna salad good? The answer is it depends. The quality of this dish after defrosting will depend on its ingredients.

Mayonnaise doesn’t freeze well and will separate, causing an unpleasant texture to tuna salads. So, I recommend avoiding freezing tuna salad with mayonnaise.

Crisp veggies, such as onions and celery, become limp after thawing. So they will ruin your tuna salad’s texture.

On the other hand, salad dressings like Greek yogurt and Miracle Whip will fare great in your freezer. Yet, again, do not do it as the outcome is not optimal.

How to Know if Tuna Salad Is Bad?

You should throw away your tuna salad if it shows any of the following signs:

  • Your tuna salad discolors, develops mold, or any black spots.
  • It features a foul or sour smell.
  • Your salad stays in your fridge for more than five days.
  • The dish stays in your fridge for more than five days.

What Happens If You Consume ‘Bad’ Tuna Salad?

how long does tuna salad last in the fridge

You can be poisoned if you consume a spoiled tuna salad.

You will be poisoned if you consume a spoiled tuna salad. 

The most common symptoms of food poisoning include diarrhea, weakness, vomiting, headache, and sometimes a low-grade fever. 

You can experience any of these or all of them if you consume a tuna salad that has gone bad. You may also experience stomach cramps, loss of appetite, or nausea from food poisoning. 

The cause is bacteria affecting your digestive system and messing it up.

If you have diarrhea for more than three days, a very high fever, difficulty keeping fluids down, or severe dehydration, you need to contact your doctor.


How Long Can I Keep My Canned Tuna in My Refrigerator?

Once you open your canned tuna, this dist will last 3 to 5 days if stored correctly in the refrigerator.

How Long Does My Tuna Casserole Last In My Refrigerator?

Like tuna salad, chicken salad, and egg salad, you can expect your tuna casserole to last up to five days if stored properly in the refrigerator (with a temperature not exceeding 40°F).

What is Dangerous About Spoiled Tuna?

Harmful bacteria will quickly multiply in tuna if you keep it at a warm temperature, including at room temperature. Then, it would be hazardous to eat.

If you consume it, you risk being hospitalized with a terrible case of food poisoning, which can last for days. So, it is essential to store your tuna properly.

Like all meat and fish, bad tuna can poison anyone if eaten. Therefore, you will need to throw in the trash any tuna that is no longer safe to eat.

While most forms of food poisoning are not life-threatening as they are usually just uncomfortable, a few can be more severe and even kill you. So, it would not be wise to take food safety lightly.

Is It Healthy To Consume Tuna Salad?

Whether it is good for your health depends on how you prepare it. For example, it tends to be unhealthy if you mix spices and ingredients high in fat, sodium, and sugar and serve it with processed bread, creating a calorie bomb.

If tuna salad is on your menu more than twice a week, it’s wise to avoid high-mercury albacore tuna.

To cut calories, you should substitute mayo with Greek yogurt and utilize tuna canned in water.

Canned tuna all contain varying amounts of mercury, so a woman should not consume more than three six-ounce servings per month.

For men, the limit would be three eight-ounce servings per month.

Meanwhile, for children ages six to twelve, the limit should be two four-point five-ounce servings per month.

Finally, children under the age of six should have no more than one three-ounce serving per month.

Can Tuna Be Kept at Room Temperature?

You can keep tuna at room temperature for up to two hours without affecting its quality and food safety.

How Long Should I Keep Tuna Salad in My Freezer?

If you own leftover tuna salad and will not want to utilize it within a few days, you should place it into your airtight freezer-safe container. Remember to label it with the date and store it in your freezer for up to six months. 

How Long Can My Tuna Salad Sit Out Under Seventies Degrees Fahrenheit?

The shelf life of your tuna salad can be no more than two hours below seventy degrees Fahrenheit. The fact is that seventy degrees Fahrenheit belongs to room temperature. Hence, you cannot keep your raw salad for long due to susceptibility to contamination.

The Bottom Line

Tuna salad is a delicious and simple dish to make for the day’s meal. Yet, it’s not something to last long.

Hopefully, my post will help you answer the question, “How long is tuna salad good for in the fridge?” It is best to keep your tuna in a suitable refrigerator at a maximum temperature of 40°F and use it within three to five days. 

Never try to eat a week-long tuna salad, even if it looks fine.

You can use your senses to tell if your tuna salad has gone bad. Always smell and look at it before serving.

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