How long can fish be left out?

  • I was defrosting fish and forgot about it. It has been left out for a long time. How long can fish actually be left out before it goes bad?

    Someone can feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm 99% certain that the rules for fish are exactly the same as those for meat, which makes this a duplicate of Is it safe to cook a steak that was left out (raw) for 7 hours? It's not safe to leave out at room temperature for *any* length of time, let alone a "long time".

    @Aaronut Not a duplicate - rules for fish are different. Fish begins to deteriorate as soon as it leaves the water whereas stake can last for a much longer time without going bad.

    @Bizorke: Everything "begins to deteriorate" once it's dead. Can you back up the claim that it's any different from other kinds of meat with a source? And if so - might as well post an answer.

    @aaronut Alright I was actually just reading up on this a little while ago. I'll post what I found.

    If fish deteriorates so quickly, how could olden day fishermen dry their cod for storage before the cod went bad?

    @Doug - different method. Their cod in that case started fresh, and was likely cut thin enough to dry out before 'wet' spoilage set in. Often accompanied with a large amount of salt. Alternately wood-smoke, to also help dry/cure/etc.

  • MissesBrown

    MissesBrown Correct answer

    9 years ago

    A quote from the below link;

    "Do not thaw frozen seafood at room temperature. Thaw in the refrigerator or defrost in the microwave oven. If thawing in the refrigerator, allow one to two hours per pound of seafood".


    Another quote from the link below;

    "... If food is allowed to remain at room temperature for two hours or longer, bacteria can multiply and cause food poisoning. - Even a tiny amount of contaminated food can cause severe illness. If you have any doubt about the safety of the food, throw it out!"

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