How to Store Chicken Breasts

Updated February 21, 2017

Buying chicken in bulk is convenient when you know how to store it. Chicken breasts freeze well and will keep for a long time so you can have some on hand for when you need them. Never waste food; store precooked chicken breasts for a few days or months depending on when they will be eaten. Pre-cut cubes for their convenient addition to soups and stews. Proper storage is an important element to chicken handling. Bacteria can grow on the meat if it's not stored properly.

Store raw chicken breasts in the refrigerator. The low temperature of the refrigerator will keep bacteria from growing on raw chicken. According to Still Tasty, The Ultimate Shelf Life Guide, the meat must be eaten within two to three days of purchase if kept in the fridge. Store raw chicken breasts on the lowest shelves or in a bottom drawer. This will reduce the chances of juices from the raw meats leaking onto vegetables that aren't cooked before eating. Don't open the package before you're ready to use the meat; otherwise store in airtight container. According to Bon Appetite, the coldest part of the fridge is another appropriate place to store chicken in the refrigerator. This area is located in the bottom two shelves and should be between 0 and 5 degrees Celsius, according to the UK Food Standards Agency.

Freeze chicken breasts for long-term storage. When in a freezer, chicken breasts will stay good for nine months, according to Still Tasty. The meat must be frozen within two to three days of purchase, before it expires in the refrigerator. Seal in an airtight container such as a plastic container, tin foil or freezer bag. Cooked chicken cubes from the freezer are convenient to throw into stews and soups.

Keep cooked chicken breast in the refrigerator for up to four days. Make sure it is in an airtight container or wrapped in either plastic or foil. Whole chicken breast stores better when cooked because it loses less moisture. When cut into pieces, cooked chicken will keep well in the fridge. Allow the cooked meat to cool almost to room temperature before putting it in the fridge.


Maintain proper temperatures in your refrigerator and freezer. The best way to do this, according to the Food Standards Agency, is to keep a thermometer in the refrigerator. Check it regularly to make sure the temperature is stable.


Do not leave the refrigerator door open for a long period of time; this will cause the temperature to fluctuate. Throw away any chicken that has not been kept at or below 5 degrees Celsius.

Things You'll Need

  • Airtight container
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About the Author

Michaelyn Erickson has been writing since 2005 and has been published regularly in a variety of northwest publications. She has written a science fiction novel and is now working on a children's book series. Michaelyn attends Evergreen State College where she is pursuing a degree in sustainable living.