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How Long Does Cooked Rice Last? Does it go Bad?

Cooked rice can be found in every refrigerator as people eat them on daily bases.

They are cooked, and we always have their leftovers with us.

But the real stress comes out when you find leftovers from a couple of days ago.

Then you get perplexed if you should have them or not.

So the question arises that do cooked rice go bad? When any food item is cooked, then it is more likely to get in contact with bacteria and toxins.

Thus one needs to be sure that they do not eat bad rice.

What is Cooked Rice?

Rice which is made through the process of boiling or steaming is called cooked rice.

It is the most commonly eaten grain and can be found in many different variations.

These variations include brown, white, converted, instant, long grain and many other rice.

All the rice dishes include different ingredients and can offer a different taste.

But we always have their leftovers because we make them in large quantities.

So people are not sure whether they should eat those leftovers or not.

But you must know that having bad rice can make you sick.

Therefore they need to be cautious if they are in doubt about how old their cooked rice is.

Bad rice contains bacillus cereus bacteria that can cause diarrhoea and vomiting.

You will feel sick after 1 to 5 hours of eating them.

But these are not severe and will only last for one day.

How Long Does Cooked Rice Last? Does Cooked Rice go Bad?

When searching for how long you can eat cooked rice, it is essential to know the type of rice.

There is a lot of difference between white and brown rice and its shelf life.

Brown rice is not polished and is rich in oil and fat.

Because of this, they are most likely to go rancid faster than white rice.

One can extend their shelf life by keeping the rice in dry form.

You can stay white rice for up to 2 years and brown rice for 3-6 months in dry form at room temperature.

But once they are cooked, all types of rice have a similar shelf life.

Cooked rice can only have an expected life of 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator.

The texture and quality of rice can be preserved in that period.

But if you want them to serve you for more time, then you should try freezing them, and they will last for eight months.

As these are only expected dates, one should check them before having them, even though they have yet to reach the end of their shelf life.

One should know about the ways through which they can find out bad cooked rice.

How to Tell if Cooked Rice Has Gone Bad?

  • Smell.

The aroma of freshly cooked rice is so pleasing that it instantly makes you hungry.

But this aroma will only last till your rice does not get stale.

Once they are cooked, they will begin to contaminate and develop bacteria that make your rice decay in no time.

So they will develop an awful smell if they go rancid, then you should avoid eating them.

  • Colour.

To find out bad rice, you can keep an eye on the colour of your rice.

At first, rice is white in colour, but as soon as they are kept for a couple of days, its colour becomes yellowish or brown.

This is your sign to throw them out as they are not good for eating.

  • The Texture.

You know that cooked rice is soft and will offer you a creamy texture.

But once they go bad, their texture will become firm and will become hard to chew.

They will become tasteless and will not offer a creamy texture any more.

Be sure that you do not eat them in large quantities.

By taking a small bite, you can find out whether they are edible.

How to Store Cooked Rice?

  • Do Not Keep It at Room Temperature.

Rice is moist and soft when cooked but keeping them at room temperature is risky.

As there are high chances of getting rancid if they are kept at high temperatures.

Therefore you must not keep them at room temperature if you have leftovers.

  • Cool It Before Refrigerating.

Many people think that keeping them in the refrigerator as soon as they are made can save them.

But doing that can actually make your rice go bad early.

Because they are not able to adjust them in very hot and cold temperatures, thus be sure to refrigerate them when they are cool.

  • Use Airtight Container.

These should not be kept in open boxes as they can go bad if they come in contact with air.

So you should not use open boxes; instead, use airtight containers to seal your rice and avoid any kind of contamination.

Put them in Ziploc bags or airtight containers and refrigerate them to exceed their shelf life.


Another way to find out bad rice is the formation of spots.

Suppose you have left your leftovers in the refrigerator, and when you find them, they have formed some spots over them.

These are bacterial spots that develop because of long-term and untidy storage.

The top layer of your rice will get brown or green coloured spots that are a sign that they have gone bad.

By using the above storage methods, one can avoid all the factors causing the early staling of rice.

How Long Does Cooked Rice Last? Does it go Bad?

Discover the lifespan of cooked rice! Find out how long cooked rice lasts and learn about storage tips to keep it safe for consumption.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Shelf Life
Servings 1 Serving


  • Cooked rice
  • Air-tight containers or Ziplock bags
  • Labels and markers


  • Store your product in an labelled container in a cool, dark place like the pantry or fridge.
  • If your food is frozen, allow it to thaw in the fridge before cooking.
  • Make sure to look for signs that your food has gone bad before eating it.
Keyword How Long Does Cooked Rice Last
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