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How Long is Dough Good for in the Fridge? The #1 Best Answer

Putting dough in the fridge can help it in the rising process. It can also be useful if you’ve made too much dough, or made dough ahead of time, and do not want to freeze it. While you may think that your dough is safe as long as it is being refrigerated.

However, dough still has a limit as to how long it can be left in the fridge. This is not only because it will lose quality, but also because the ingredients in the dough will begin to spoil, making it unsafe for you to bake and consume.

How Long Is Dough Good For In the Fridge?

Dough can be stored in the fridge for two to three days. While it is best to use it within a day, you won’t run the risk of it spoiling in that time. However, you may notice that the refrigeration process changes the quality of your dough the longer that you leave it in the fridge. Your dough will likely lose moisture and become less pliable. To ensure the safety of your dough in the fridge it also needs to be properly stored.

How Long Is Dough Good For In the Fridge?
How Long Is Dough Good For In the Fridge?

Why Does Dough Go Bad In The Fridge?

While you may think that because dough is made up of several different ingredients that are either stored in the fridge or are pantry ingredients, it has a long fridge life, this is not the case. When combining the ingredients, the dough has a short life in the fridge.

Dough in the Fridge
Dough in the Fridge

As the yeast actively grows, leaving it in the fridge for too long can promote the growth of harmful bacteria. While the small granules in yeast are hard to see because they are so small, they are in fact living microbes.

This is what produces the bubbles in your bread and helps it rise. Because yeast is alive, if you make the dough, it activates.

After it starts this process, the yeast continues to spawn. If left in the fridge for too long, it becomes dangerous to consume. This bacteria is unable to be killed during the cooking process.

While eggs and dairy products last for a significant amount of time in the fridge, this is when they have been unopened. Once mixed together, the fridge expectancy before spoilage is significantly reduced.

As with all foods, if you’re questioning the quality, it’s always better to be safe than sorry and just toss it. It is a common misconception that all bacteria can be cooked out. There are some strains of it that cannot be killed at the temperatures that are required to cook dough.

Dough is Made Up of Different Ingredients
Dough is Made Up of Different Ingredients

How To Store Dough In The Fridge

When storing dough in the fridge one of the most important things to remember is that you do not want to store it in an air-tight container. The ingredients and the yeast in the dough promote growth.

This is why you notice that your dough will rise, the yeast is reacting to the other ingredients in your dough. If you store it in an air-tight container the dough will not have the space necessary to expand properly.

Storing it in an air-tight container can also cause the dough to begin to ferment. This process can affect the yeast in your dough.

While it is still safe to eat, your dough will have a less than desirable texture and the cooked result will reflect this as well.

Step 1

The best way to store dough in the fridge is to place it in a metal mixing bowl.

Step 2

First, add a little bit of olive oil to the bowl to prevent your dough from sticking.

Step 3

Cover the top of the mixing bowl with cling wrap. This locks in the moisture without completely stifling the dough from rising. You can also store your dough in a metal mixing bowl with

Step 4

If you are trying to store dough that is still rising you want to use a different method of storage. Place the dough on either a baking sheet with parchment paper or a metal bowl with a little bit of parchment paper in the bottom.

Step 5

You then want to cover the dough with a clean kitchen towel. This will allow for the dough to breathe enough to rise, but it will also prevent it from drying out.

 Place Dough in a Metal Mixing Bowl
Place Dough in a Metal Mixing Bowl

Conclusion About How Long is Dough Good for in the Fridge

You can store dough in the fridge safely for two to three days. However, you will notice that there is a change in the quality.

You will see the best results from your dough if you use it within a day of putting it into the fridge.

Otherwise, you may notice that your dough has become less pliable and has started to dry out.

Discard any dough that has been in the fridge for longer than three days. After this amount of time the ingredients in the dough will begin to spoil, putting you at risk for a food-borne illness.

Spoil Dough
Spoil Dough

Frequently Asked Questions About How Long Is Dough Good For In the Fridge?

Does refrigerated dough taste different once you cook it?

The refrigerated dough tastes different. Letting the dough rise in the fridge produces a better end result than if you were to let it rise on the counter. The refrigeration process locks in the flavor. It gives the dough just enough oxygen to let it rise, without letting outside elements in.

How long can you store gluten-free dough in the fridge?

You can store gluten-free dough it in the fridge for up to three days. Gluten-free dough has a similar fridge life to other doughs. When storing gluten-free dough in the fridge, store it in a container that is not air-tight. If you are thawing pre-made gluten-free dough in the fridge, it is best to use it within 48 hours.

How long can you store dough in the freezer?

Properly stored dough can last up to three months in the freezer without affecting the quality of the dough. You can also freeze the dough. This gives it a longer storage life than storing it in the fridge. However, once you have thawed the dough, you can not put it back into the freezer if you do not use it all. Either bake it or toss it.