Best Way to Store an Open Can of Sardines

The typical can of sardines is about 3.75 oz and contains around 190-230 calories depending on the brand and variety. This is often considered to be a single serving, although not everyone will want to eat an entire can in one sitting, whether you’re just looking for a light protein-packed snack or are giving your kitty a little treat. Bigger containers of sardines are also available, up to 9.5 oz or more! If you can’t quite finish that sardine can, you may be wondering, “Is it ok to store an opened can or jar of sardines in the fridge?”

Yes, you can store opened or partially-eaten sardines in the refrigerator! Because tin containers cannot be resealed after opening, place the sardines in a glass or plastic airtight container with a lid. (Glass containers are preferable, as they are less likely to retain stains or odors.) As long as your refrigerator is cooled to the proper temperature (at or below 38°F,) your sardines should be good for up to 3 or 4 days after opening. For an even greater shelf life, you can freeze opened sardines inside your covered airtight container or a freezer bag (at 0°F)—the freezing and thawing process will make the texture of the sardines much softer and better suited for cooked dishes, but they will remain safe to eat for 3 months or more. 

Sardines sold in a glass jar may be stored in the refrigerator or freezer in the original container. These might be a good option for you if you eat a lot of sardines and would like to buy in bulk, as it could be more economical than buying individual cans and more environmentally friendly, but smaller glass jars of sardines are available as well!

As always, it is important to check your food for any signs of spoilage before consuming. As long as your sardines have not developed a new odor or changed in appearance and there is no evidence of mold, you should be safe to enjoy your refrigerated or frozen sardines. is reader-supported!
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