Ahhhh, steak.. one of the most delicious foods on the planet. Rich in protein, incredibly tasty, and great fun to cook up and impress friends and family.
However, like all cooking, it can become quite a time-consuming task to cook. Meaning sometimes if you’re a bodybuilder, or simply someone who loves steak.
It can be best to cook steak in bulk, many bodybuilders like to cook all of their meals on a Sunday and then consume them during the weak.
When cooking steak, it’s best to allow the steak to sit for around 15 minutes for the juices to settle before consuming. But how long can steak be left out before it goes bad?
In short, yes steak will go bad if left out for too long. But there is much more to learn, which we go into shortly.
In this post we go through everything you need to know about leaving steak out, and why it’s not a good idea to leave it for too long if you’re planning to eat it at a later date.
Let’s take a look…
How Long Can Cooked Steak Be Left Out?
Ok so let’s get to it. How long can cook steak be left out before it goes bad and is no longer safe to consume? You can safely leave cooked steak out at room temperature for around two hours, depending on the temperature.
If the temperature is over 90 degrees fahrenheit then it’s not safe to consume after leaving it out for one hour.
However, as mentioned above, it’s better to consume the steak immediately after the juices have settled instead of leaving it to sit for too long.
Steak that has been left out for over two hours should be discarded immediately and not consumed. Not only will it not taste as nice, but it can also make you very sick.
What Happens If You Eat Steak That Has Been Left Out Too Long?
If you’ve accidentally forgotten how long your steak has been left out and you decide to consume it, this can make you very sick and you may even get food poisoning.
Symptoms of food poisoning include nausea, vomiting, fever, and much more. So it’s wise not to consume steak that has been left out if you’ve forgotten to keep track of time.
You may also experience diarrhea and abdominal pains which can last for days, this is because the steak will start to contaminate with bacteria that your body cannot fight off.
Bad meat can attract huge numbers of bacteria, so even a small amount can spread diseases such as salmonella and E.coli.
A good rule of thumb to go by with any meat is “when in doubt, don’t”. This means if you’ve got any doubt in your mind whatsoever, then you should not risk it,
If you’ve left your steak out for a while and haven’t kept track of the time then it’s wise to discard the steak immediately, do not feed it to a pet, and do not consume it yourself, it’s not safe.
You can usually tell if your steak has gone bad as it will become slimy on the surface and start to smell a little funky. If you’ve left your steak out for over a day or two then you may start to see mold which is a clear indication that you need to get rid of the meat.
How To Preserve Cooked Steak Properly
If you’re sure you’re not going to eat your steak right after cooking, then it’s best to preserve your steak properly to ensure it’s safe to eat when the time comes.
So how do you preserve your steak properly?
The method largely depends on whether the steak is cooked or raw.
So let’s take a look:
If you’re looking to preserve your raw steak for between three and five days, it’s best to keep it in the refrigerator at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below.
This will keep your steak chilled and free from bacteria, and it’s also wise to transfer it from the original packaging to a dish and wrap it in plastic wrap.
This allows the steak to breathe a little and stops it from sweating and becoming super slimy. You’ll want to ensure some airflow can circulate around the steak whilst in the refrigerator.
You should also ensure that your steak is on the bottom shelf of the fridge, this avoids any drips that could potentially land on other foods and contaminate them.
It’s not recommended that you leave raw steak in the fridge for over three days, you should be cooking and consuming the steak before then unless you plan to store it in the freezer.
If you know you’re not going to be cooking your steak right away, then place it in the freezer as soon as you get home. This will lock in all of the goodness and nutrition and essentially keep it frozen in time until you decide to thaw it out.
When it comes to storing cooked steak, it’s recommended to use a small plastic container and again place the meat in the fridge on the bottom shelf.
This will keep your steak preserved and ready to cook at any time when you’re ready. Another way to preserve cooked steak is to wrap the meat tightly in either foil or cling film and store it in the fridge, this will keep bacteria from growing on your meat and help preserve it.
You shouldn’t be trying to preserve cooked or raw steak for over three to four days. When this length of time has passed it can become dangerous and risky to eat the food, so don’t.
Things To Consider
When dealing with steak, and any meat for that matter, cooked or raw. You need to be incredibly careful when it comes to cooking, storing, and eating.
If you leave meat out for too long, it becomes a breeding ground for bacteria and can quickly become very dangerous.
Not only do you need to ensure your storing and preserving your steak correctly, but you also need to ensure your cooking it properly too.
Eating raw meat is incredibly dangerous and can leave us with food poisoning or worse.
If you do happen to eat raw, off, or bad steak, then I recommend seeking the advice of your doctor immediately and ensure you stay hydrated.
Usually symptoms will go away after 3 – 4 days but if they persist please seek medical advice.
So, will steak go bad if left out? Absolutely! If you leave cooked steak out too long it will start to collect bacteria which can be very dangerous if consumed.
Leaving raw or cooked meat out for too long is a bad idea, so ensure you either eat the steak or store it and preserve it correctly ready for consumption another day.
Hopefully, you’ve learned a thing or two in this post about steak going off, and how easy it is to happen, and what you should do if it does.
Be very careful when dealing with steak, as it can attract a lot of harmful bacteria incredibly quickly.
Thanks for taking the time to read this post, feel free to stick around and learn a little more about steak!