Safe handling of pork is essential. Here’s a simple list of how-to’s.
Never brown or partially cook meat for later.
- Never eat pork that has been sitting on the counter for more than 1-2 hours.
- Only store leftovers in the coldest part of the refrigerator and for no more than 4-5 days.
- Follow this simple rule: “When in doubt, throw it out.”
- The best way to defrost pork is in the fridge in its wrapping. Follow these guidelines.
- Small roast: 3-5 hrs/lb
- Large roast: 4-7 hrs/lb
- One-inch thick chop: 12-14 hrs
- Ground pork needs to be estimated by package thickness
- Microwave thawing? Sure thing. Follow the microwave manufacturer’s guidelines. Just be sure to cook meat immediately after microwave thawing.
- In the refrigerator: sealed, pre-packed fresh pork cuts can be kept in the refrigerator for 2-4 days. Sealed ground pork will keep for 1-2 days. Ham and other smoked products keep for 3-4 days while luncheon meats, dogs and bacon can be kept for up to 7 days.
- In the freezer: well-wrapped fresh cuts like chops, roasts and tenderloins can be kept for up to 6 months. Well-wrapped ground pork is good in the freezer for 3 months.
- While you can refreeze pork once it is thawed, it may lose some quality due to the moisture lost through defrosting.