Those of united state on the USDA’s Meat and also Poultry Hotline can constantly tell once St. Patrick’s work approaches. Beginning in early March, we begin to receive several questions around corned beef: exactly how do you prepare it? How can you tell when it’s safely cooked? exactly how long have the right to you store it?


While a traditional dinner the corned beef and cabbage may bring you the “luck of the Irish,” girlfriend can’t rely on an excellent luck come ensure the your meal is food safe. Instead, monitor these advice to make sure that you and also your guests don’t turn eco-friendly (with food poisoning!).

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Package Dating and Storage Times

If you buy uncooked corned beef in a pouch through pickling juices, which has a “sell-by” day or no date, it deserve to be stored because that 5 come 7 days in the refrigerator, unopened. If girlfriend buy commodities with a “use-by” date, you may store it unopened in the refrigerator until that date.

An uncooked corned beef brisket may be frozen because that 1 month for ideal quality if friend drain and also re-wrap it. We recommended draining the brine due to the fact that salt urges rancidity and texture changes. The flavor and texture will diminish with prolonged freezing, but the product is quiet safe.


Corned beef is made from one of several much less tender cut of beef like the brisket, rump or round. Therefore, it needs long, moist cooking. It can be cook on optimal of the cooktop or in the oven, microwave, or slow cooker. The USDA does not recommend one details cooking method as best, yet we do carry out cooking direction in our truth sheet, Corned Beef and also Food Safety. Whatever an approach you use, make sure that the corned beef get a for sure minimum interior temperature the 160 °F or above.

Cooking Ahead

It’s safe to cook corned beef front of time. After cooking, reduced it into several piece for quicker cooling–or slice it, if girlfriend like. Location the beef in, shallow containers and cool it in the frozen refrigerator quickly.


Leftover corned beef must be sliced and refrigerated promptly–within 2 hours of food preparation or reheating. Usage cooked-ahead or leftover corned beef in ~ 3 come 4 days or freeze 2 come 3 months.

If friend have any other questions, feel free to contact us in ~ the Hotline (1-888-674-6854 toll-free) or virtual at (English and also Spanish).

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Written through Diane Van, manager, USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline, this article was at first posted top top the website march 15.