How long can I keep carbonara refrigerated?

More than half of the people in Germany eat pasta at least once a week. Unfortunately, leftovers often end up in the garbage and contribute to the mountain of food waste in German private households of 6.7 million tons annually. Too good for the bin! gives the most important tips on storage and use of leftovers:

Tip 1: keep germs away from the pasta

Fresh pasta spoils very quickly. They should therefore always be kept well chilled and used up or frozen in three to four days. Pre-cooked pasta will keep for a few weeks in the closed original packaging.

Dried pasta can be stored for up to a year and can even be stored significantly longer than the best-before date indicates. If it is exceeded, however, the goods should be checked thoroughly: If something looks, smells and tastes good, it is usually still good. It is important to store pasta at moderate temperatures and dry in a tightly fitting container. It does not matter whether the pack is already open. Colored noodles can lose their color over time when exposed to light, so they are not yet to be thrown away.

Tip 2: prevent drying out and pasta slush

Hard or soggy pasta quickly ends up in the trash. Closed containers protect against drying out. Sealable plastic cans and covered bowls are suitable. The pasta should cool down for two to three hours beforehand. Only then does it go into the container. Otherwise condensation can form in which the pasta will soak through.
It is best to store leftover sauce separately from the pasta. When warming up, first bring the sauce to the boil, then add the cold noodles and heat them too. This will keep them from becoming too soft.

Tip 3: Put leftover pasta in the fridge

Pasta leftovers belong in the refrigerator. On the top shelf, noodles will keep covered for a day or two. Before eating, they should be checked for freshness based on their smell and appearance.

Tip 4: extend the life of the sauce

Leftover sauce can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for a few days. Unused sauce tetrapacks can be closed with a staple. Opened pesto lasts four to five days, homemade minced meat sauce in the bottom refrigerator compartment for up to two days. Tomato sauce can also be boiled down so that it will last about three months in mason jars in the pantry.

Danger: Carbonara sauce is a special case. Since it is made with raw egg, it should be chilled well and eaten on the day of preparation. Otherwise there is a risk of salmonella infection.

Tip 5: How Parmesan stays tasty

It's worth buying Parmesan and Grana Padano in one piece. They last four weeks, which is even longer than if they were grated. The best precaution against spores: Do not wrap the cheese pieces in cellophane, but in a linen cloth and put them in the vegetable compartment of the refrigerator. Alternatively, hard cheese can also be stored in paper or in a cheese jar in the middle refrigerator compartment.

Incidentally, a little whitish mold with Grana Padano and Parmesan is no reason to throw the cheese away. Infested areas can simply be cut away generously. Warning: this rule only applies to hard cheese.

Leftover recipes:

Crostata di spaghetti alla napoletana by Sante de Santis
Ham noodles by Thilo Bischoff

The BMELV app Too good for the bin! Contains further recipes for the best leftovers. It also offers tips on the storage and shelf life of food as well as an interactive shopping planner. It is available free of charge in the AppStore and on GooglePlay: