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How Long Is My Leftover Pizza Still Safe to Eat?

Spoon University logo Spoon University 08-09-2018 Casey Twomey

© Getty After a long night out, you may feel insatiable drunchies stronger than your actual level of hunger. You order that extra-large pizza anyway. You fail to finish it, but it's OK, you'll save it for breakfast the next morning (or 2 pm the next day).

Leaving our pizza out and eating it at another time is something we've all been guilty of at some point or another. But is pizza actually safe to eat after it's been sitting out for a while? Well, it depends on how its been stored.

If your pizza has been sitting at room temperature...

a pizza sitting on top of a wooden table: leftover pizza pizza pepperoni © Amy Yi leftover pizza pizza pepperoni Sadly, if your pizza has been sitting out for more than two hours, it is not safe to eat. According to the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA), all perishable foods, including pizza, are not safe to eat after sitting at room temperature overnight. This rule holds true whether your pizza has meat on it or not. By leaving your pizza out at room temperature, you are increasing your risk of being contaminated by food borne illnesses.

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The USDA indicates a "danger zone" for perishable foods stored at temperates between 40 degrees Fahrenheit and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. The number of food borne illnesses can double every 20 minutes that a food is left out in the "danger zone."

If your pizza has been sitting in the fridge...

leftover pizza tea coffee © Emily Waples leftover pizza tea coffee Lucky you. According to the USDA, if your pizza has been refrigerated at a temperature lower than 40 degrees Fahrenheit, it's safe to eat up to four days. If you want to eat a slice that's been sitting in the fridge for five days, it's generally okay too—but after four days your risk of getting a food borne illness increases and who wants that? It's much safer to just order another pizza.

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Disclaimer: Views expressed in this article are the author's own and MSN does not endorse them in any way. Neither can MSN independently verify any claims made in the article. You should consult your physician before starting any weight loss or health management programme to determine if it is right for your needs.

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