Can Yoghurt Go Bad If Not Refrigerated
Yogurt can go bad if not refrigerated. Yogurt is a dairy product and contains milk proteins that can spoil if not kept cold. Unrefrigerated yogurt can develop bacteria which can cause food poisoning. It is therefore important to keep yogurt refrigerated, especially if it is not being consumed immediately.
Now that you learned yogurt cannot stay more than 2 hours out of the fridge; I am sure you will want to immediately refrigerate this delicious treat. As long as yogurt does not sit outside for longer than 2 hours, nor does it show any signs of spoilage, you are fine with eating unrefrigerated yogurt. Yes, refrigerated yogurt is safe to eat as long as it is left out for less than 24 hours. If you make a habit of eating yogurt that has been left unrefrigerated for longer than 2 hours, be sure to check for certain signs before eating it.
If you want to make sure that the yogurt that is been refrigerated is safe, do not let it sit at room temperature for more than 2 hours. As the chart below shows, you should never leave yogurt at room temperature for longer than two hours. Once the yogurt has set, you may allow it to cool down to room temperature and store unrefrigerated for at least one day. You should also note that the shelf life of yogurt may be reduced as well by taking the yogurt out of the refrigerator, letting it sit at room temperature for an hour or so, then returning it to the refrigerator.
If you happen to leave the yogurt out, remember to put it back in the fridge at least two hours after taking it out. Refrigerate at least three hours before serving yogurt, or overnight if you can, this is best to ensure that the yogurt tastes fresh and tasty. Yogurt needs to be refrigerated to slow down the spoilage process, but not all yogurt tastes better when it is refrigerated. Remember to store yogurt in the fridge as soon as you can after opening the container.
|At Room Temperature||For one day|
|In the Fridge||For 2 weeks|
Since bacteria grow extremely fast at room temperature, leaving Greek yogurt out unopened there for long periods of time can be hazardous, and just because it has not been opened yet does not change that. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Greek yogurt may only need to be left for two hours before being unsafe to eat, as bacteria grow exceptionally fast at room temperature.
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To keep yogurt from going bad fast, and protect you from being exposed to spoiled foods, it is important to keep in mind the length of time yogurt can stay at room temperature. Since, as we explained above, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says no perishable food should sit out more than two hours, Greek yogurt certainly cannot sit out overnight. While the already mentioned two hours might be too strict in some cases, leaving Greek yogurt out overnight is simply way too much time, so simply toss it immediately. Yes, Greek yogurt needs to be refrigerated if you want to make sure that it is safe to eat, because when left outside, it starts going bad after only something like two hours.
Yogurt is packed with good bacteria, but just like any perishable food, it can start growing bad bacteria fast when left out too long. The point is yogurt is packed full of good bacteria, but that does not magically make it immune from growing bad ones, either. Yogurt is more than just milk with an active culture of bacteria, it also contains acids and enzymes, both of which have a way of rotting pretty rapidly.
There is a misconception that because yogurt is made with fermented milk and it already contains bacteria, it does not spoil if left unrefrigerated. Leaving yogurt unrefrigerated for a longer period will cause the bacteria to grow and turn it acidic. Due to the high nutritional value of yogurt, it is not suitable for leaving yogurt outdoors for longer periods as warmer temperatures may accelerate the growth of bacteria, making this dairy product spoil more quickly. Even with its bacteria, yogurt will spoil if left outdoors for two hours or longer in temperatures between 41 and 90 degrees F.
At home, yogurt can become acidic and even spoil after sitting outside of the refrigerator longer than two hours. The state of the yogurt is based on not just how long it has been left outside, but also how much heat it has been exposed to. If room temperature is less than 40 degrees Fahrenheit, then you should consume refrigerated yogurt within an hour after keeping it at that temperature, once refrigerated. A store-bought refrigerated yogurt can be kept safely at room temperature for up to two hours, provided that the room temperature is at or above 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
Refrigerated yogurt (once opened) lasts for up to two weeks, whereas unrefrigerated yogurt (opened or not) will last for around a week. This is part of why yogurt kept refrigerated for quite some time will not spoil, while yogurt kept refrigerated lasts longer — often months.
Some folks may say that they leave yogurt out of the refrigerator for 6-7 hours, mainly when bringing it into work, and that is how good it tastes. Jeff Potter, an expert in food sciences, believes that yogurts may need to sit out of the fridge for up to eight hours, as temperatures are not exactly ideal where the microorganisms are growing. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says that yogurt sitting out at temperatures of 40 degrees to 90 degrees technically could sit outside for no longer than 2 hours and still be safe to eat.
If it is warmer than 90 degrees Fahrenheit, then you have just an hour to eat this yogurt sitting outside the fridge. For optimum freshness and shelf life, yogurt needs rapid refrigeration to 40 degrees F. or lower.
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Bacterial growth and increased acidity occur when yogurt is left outside of the refrigerator for extended periods. Mold, yeast, and slowly growing bacteria can all form and spoil your yogurt if left for extended periods. Allowing your yogurt to sit at room temperature too long may contain microbes that could cause food poisoning.
If dinner time rolls around the next day and your yogurt is unrefrigerated, it will begin spoiling within one day. We all like eating yogurt, but it is often totally out of our minds to put back any leftover yogurt back into the fridge once we have opened it. Next time you see that yogurt starting to get thick, that is fine, there is no need to worry about that if you keep it properly.
If you are packing yogurt to go, be sure to either add an ice pack or use a insulated bag or container so that it is kept safely over two hours from eating.
How do you preserve yogurt without a refrigerator?
Freeze a water bottle and carry it with the rest of your food if you’re going on a picnic or want to preserve your milk, cheese, yogurt, or other dairy items cool. As the day goes on, the ice in the cup will gradually melt, keeping your meal cold and having left you with a cool bottle of water to sip.
How do you store yogurt without a freezer?
Yogurt should not be left out for more than two hours at room temperature. This indicates that yogurt’s maximum shelf life outside of a refrigerator is two hours. Yes, even after spending more than two hours out of the refrigerator, the yogurt may not appear to be that awful.
How long does unopened yogurt last in the fridge?
Unopened Greek yogurt can be consumed one to two weeks beyond the sell-by date as long as it has been refrigerated, according to both EatByDate and Food University blogs. Even longer, up to two or three weeks, is considered safe for regular yogurt. The older it gets, the more unpleasant it tastes.