Whenever you open a package of tofu, it will deteriorate much more quickly than it can be kept in your refrigerator.
The amount of tofu in a package is often too much to eat in one sitting. Once the tofu is cooked, you may find yourself wondering how long you can keep it before it goes bad.
How long does cooked tofu last? Tofu that has been cooked and stored appropriately will remain safe and delicious for about four to five days. Tofu’s calorie count depends on whether it has been mixed with other food, such as noodles or sauce. Additionally, cooked tofu can be frozen for three months.
Using this article, you can learn how to store cooked tofu and how to determine if it is no longer good once it has been cooked. And, we’ll show you how to freeze it too!
How To Store Cooked Tofu
In some grocery stores, you can find tofu outside of the refrigerated section, which can create some confusion when it comes to how you should store it after purchase and, especially, after cooking it.
Cooking tofu can be done many different ways, and how it is stored may vary depending on how it was prepared or how it will be used in the future.
Tofu cooked in a pot is frequently accompanied by a few questions. Do you need to refrigerate it? What is the maximum time it can stay at room temperature before it spoils? These are the next questions we will explore in depth.
Does Cooked Tofu Need to Be Refrigerated?
Tofu that isn’t going to be consumed within an hour or two after being cooked should be refrigerated.
For 4–5 days after being cooked, cooked tofu will remain safe and delicious if it is properly stored.
You should store cooked tofu in an airtight container if you plan to eat it soon.
If you’re storing cooked tofu, choose a container with the least amount of air possible.
Your tofu will only last as long as the longest-lasting food item in your meal if it is cooked with any other ingredients.
Stirfries containing a variety of vegetables, tofu, and eggs are limited by the shelf life of the eggs, which is on average 3 days. You may want to limit storage to two days if you’ve cooked your tofu with rice.
How Long Can Cooked Tofu Sit at Room Temperature?
Tofu should be covered and refrigerated within two hours after it has been cooked, as is the case with most foods.
Approximately 2 hours after a meal, the risk for bacterial contamination increases to the point where concern over food poisoning is warranted.
Cooked tofu is not the only product that has to adhere to the 2-hour rule; fresh tofu are also subject to this rule.
It is possible to make tofu safe beyond the 2-hour mark even if you are bringing it to work, on a road trip, or for another type of day-long adventure.
Tofu should be stored at room temperature as follows:
- Let your tofu cool to room temperature after it has been cooked.
- After cooling, transfer it to an airtight container without waiting too long.
- Before transferring the container to your lunch box or another form of transport, refrigerate the tofu for at least a few hours.
- Wait until you are ready to serve your meal before breaking the seal of the container.
- Use insulated lunch bags, such as these cooler totes, to keep your meal cool.
- If your tofu meal remains sealed, try not to expose it to extreme fluctuations in temperature.
This will decrease the likelihood of contamination, but they will not completely ensure the safety of your tofu.
How to Tell if Cooked Tofu Is Bad
Tofu can go bad for several reasons, but there are a few tell-tale signs.
You can tell whether your cooked tofu is still fresh and safe to eat if it is mixed with any other ingredients. You should judge the freshness of your tofu based on the mixture.
The smell of tofu isn’t overwhelming. It is best to dispose of any container of stored cooked tofu if it has a sour odor.
Tofu is naturally cream or off-white in color. When tofu is growing mold, you may notice spots of white or green/blue when it’s been prepared very simply.
You need to throw it away if this is the case. The color of cooked tofu is altered when seasoned, marinated, or fried, making it difficult to detect signs of decay.
Try a single bite of your tofu if you are willing to taste test. The food has gone bad if there is any sour tang or fermentation aroma.
The best course of action is to stop eating if you detect any musty or otherwise off flavors.
Can You Freeze Cooked Tofu?
Fresh or cooked tofu can be frozen. No matter how you prepare the tofu, it will freeze well.
Tofu’s texture and consistency will change when frozen, however, it’s usually for the better.
Even if you press your tofu before cooking, previously frozen tofu will be denser and chewier than when first prepared.
Tofu should be cooked in large blocks, either baked or fried, so it can be frozen easily.
Here’s how to freeze cooked tofu:
- To wrap your tofu in one layer, lay down a large sheet of aluminum foil.
- A layer of plastic wrap should be placed over that sheet.
- Top the plastic wrap with the individual pieces of tofu in a single layer.
- Put the plastic wrap on all the tofu.
- After the tofu is wrapped in plastic, seal it inside aluminum foil.
- Transfer the tofu wrapped in plastic wrap to your freezer.
- The baking sheet can be removed after 1–2 hours.
You may still be able to squeeze out a great deal of water when you are ready to defrost and use your cooked and frozen tofu.
Adding it to any dish after it thaws will enhance its flavor even more.
How Long Can You Freeze Tofu?
When stored in the freezer, tofu will remain fresh for up to six months. Thawing cooked tofu and using it within 3 months is recommended.
To make sure you know how long the tofu has been in your freezer, it’s a good idea to label the container or package of tofu with a date before you put it in.
You may want to keep a record of how cooked tofu was prepared in order to make sure you know what you’re going to use when you defrost it.
Can You Freeze Tofu Scramble?
You can freeze tofu scramble, but you will lose some quality depending on what you have added to it.
Once the tofu scramble has cooled to room temperature, transfer it to a Ziploc bag that can be frozen. Before sealing and transferring to your freezer, press out as much air as possible from the bag.
Can You Eat Cooked Tofu Cold?
The texture of cooked tofu may not taste as good cold as it would if it were reheated. However, the way the tofu was cooked may have an effect on how it tastes cold. Providing it has been stored appropriately and has not been left out on the counter for too long, it is safe to eat.
You can enjoy more variety with cooked tofu when it is hot versus cold, as the texture may differ.
Is Tofu Already Cooked?
During the process of producing tofu, soybeans are cooked.
Making soy milk begins with soaking and then boiling soy beans. In order to form a solid brick, the soy milk is cooked again and thickened with thickeners. Tofu is a type of cheese made of soybeans.
Tofu bricks themselves aren’t raw, but the ingredients inside are, so this isn’t a raw food. A raw food diet may allow this, but not strictly.
Can You Eat Tofu Uncooked?
It is safe to eat raw or uncooked tofu if it has been stored properly. Tofu is made with cooked ingredients, which can be eaten without further preparation.
A break in the sterile seal occurs when the package is opened.
You should either cook the tofu or keep it well sealed and protected at all times before you eat it to prevent food poisoning from airborne bacteria or mold. This applies to any raw food item as well.