Mashed potatoes are a yummy starch recipe that offers a beautiful, energetic day. It is enjoyable to have mashed potatoes. It is made by mashing boiled potatoes and adding milk, butter, salt, pepper. It is are full of nutrients and zero cholesterol food items. When you serve it with vegetables or fish, it increases the taste and fills the diet in your dish. It makes you ready to work all day.
The mashed potatoes are famous all over the world. People love to have it in their breakfast or evening snacks. Sometimes, people purchase the mashed potatoes from any restaurant or food van for their guests, and they have to wait. How long can mashed potatoes stay out? It is necessary to know in detail.
How Long Can Mashed Potatoes Stay Out
It is one of the most asked questions. In general, the answer will be that any cooked food can stay out at room temperature only for two hours. Mashed potatoes also cannot stay out for more than two hours. After this time range, there comes the production of bacteria in contact with the mashed potatoes. These bacteria are responsible for causing severe vomiting or food poisoning, or diarrhea.
The Starch of the Potato Contact Bacteria
There are some bacteria called Bacillus Cereus, which causes the breeding of the starch part of the potatoes. These bacteria are odorless, colorless, and tasteless. That’s why you do not get the presence of these bacteria, but it will cause severe health issues after having it.
It is heard that you should not mix the potatoes with meat or fish before beginning the eating. The Bacillus bacteria growth works in the temperature range from 40 degrees Fahrenheit to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. So, you should not keep the cooked starchy potatoes out at this temperature for long. The hot temperature can prevent the growth of the bacteria, and it works only for two hours when the potatoes are hot enough.
Dairy Product of the Mashed Potato Contact Bacteria
From the moisture of the milk of mashed potatoes, a single bacteria get the chance to grow. It divides every half an hour. So, the production of these bacteria is too fast, and you cannot imagine that the bacteria spreading over the warm food quickly.
There is another bacterium present in our throat, skin, nose, and throat. These are Staphylococcus Aureus. They can be seriously harmful bacteria when they contact improper managed food when you have the cooked food. Even after two hours of keeping it at room temperature, these bacteria get the chance to grow and act. They provide harmful toxins, and they will attack your stomach and turn to cramps and diarrhea.
The fat content of the food can increase the growth of the bacteria by providing a favorable condition for their production. Milk products have high fat and low water content. These are perfectly fit to grow the bacteria. So, it is obvious to keep the milk product in the freezer. Mashed potatoes are the same. Do not let the bacteria break the glucose and galactose into acid. This lactic acid turns the milk into curd type structure and spoils the food.
In bacteria, you have to use heavy cream and cheese. There is a possibility to produce a bacterium called Listeria Monocytogenes that is found in unpasteurized cheese. Its production is also quick. You may be immune to these bacteria. Yes, it is possible. But some people like pregnant women, children, or elderly persons are prone to be attacked severely by these bacteria. So, you should not offer the mashed potatoes before reheating, and you have to reheat the potatoes at a high temperature.
Proper Management of Mashed Potatoes
To manage the cooked mashed potatoes and keep them free from bacteria contamination, you should follow some rules. Know them well and do as the rules say.
- You should have good tracking of time. The mashed potatoes should not be on the table for more than two hours. Even if you are serving your guests, you should arrange in such a way that the potatoes are eaten within 2 hours.
- If you want to store the mashed potatoes, keep them in the refrigerator before it crosses two hours. Keep the potatoes in an airtight container and then place them in the fridge so that no bacteria that grow at a low temperature can attack.
- The mashed potatoes stay safe for three to five days if you keep them in the fridge at the correct time in the container. It is possible to keep it intact for 10 to 12 months if kept in the freezer.
- When you thaw the frozen potatoes in the microwave, you should eat all of it and dump the left potatoes. After reheating the frozen potatoes, it is not good to keep them back in the chiller. You can keep them back in the fridge for additional three to four days after heating them on the stove.
- During reheating, cook the potatoes for at least 165 degrees as it is enough to kill the bacteria. Heat the potatoes evenly so that every part of them get heated enough
- If there is any confusion about storing the matched potatoes, you should check if it is okay to eat.
Test the Mashed Potatoes
It is a good practice to test the cooked mashed potatoes before eating. There can be many situations that can spoil the potatoes. Even if you have stored them, there can be temperature fluctuation in your refrigerator. There can be any problem with your container. There may already be bacteria growth before keeping it in the fridge. So, test it and have it if it is good.
The first way to test it is that you have to check the smell. If the odor is pungent or foul, you can be sure that it is not okay to have it at all. There can be some appearance over the potatoes. If you find them, there is no question of having them.
You can see that the potatoes are leaving some discolored liquid. This liquid may have a foul odor. You will get a sour smell on the potatoes too. All these make sure that the potatoes have already got spoiled.
Many people taste the mashed potatoes a little to check it. But it is not a good practice. You should not prevent it by having it. If it is already spoiled, it can cause health issues like vomiting or stomach ache. There can be problems with finding the contamination sometimes. Some bacteria contamination cannot be noticed by smelling or touching it. If you have doubt, dump it away.
How long can mashed potatoes stay out? As the mashed potatoes are a regular meal for many people, it is an important question. You may like to have the mashed potatoes a lot. With vegetables and eggs, the mashed potatoes are the correct carbohydrate addition. But you have to maintain the preservation rules well and have the potatoes before it can cause any illness. Health concern comes first.
So, know the preservation process of the mashed potatoes and have them before it gets spoiled.