Cheesy, creamy, and full of veggie goodness, cauliflower cheese is a delicious main course, snack or side dish that the whole family can enjoy.
Made from lightly boiled cauliflower and a cheesy sauce, the dish can be livened up with mustard and Worcestershire sauce or kept milder for younger members of the family. A real classic in Great Britain, cauliflower cheese is a traditional dish that’s enjoyed by millions.
But is it possible to make this in advance and keep it fresh? And how about leftovers? We answer these questions and more about keeping cauliflower cheese in the refrigerator.
How Long Will Cauliflower Cheese Last in the Refrigerator?
Cauliflower cheese lasts very well in the fridge so it’s possible to make this dish in advance if that’s easier. If you’re making it on the same day and have leftovers, these can also be stored in the refrigerator.
The shelf life of cauliflower is around five days in the refrigerator, but cauliflower cheese is much shorter.
It can only be refrigerated for 2-3 days maximum before it needs to be binned. This is due to the dairy products in the sauce.
Make sure that the dish is covered while it’s in the refrigerator; this will prevent the cauliflower from drying out.
Can You Reheat Cauliflower Cheese?
Reheating food is a great way to minimise food wastage as well as cutting down on the type it takes to prepare a meal.
Reheating food normally takes a fraction of the time, and some dishes taste even better second time around.
Cauliflower cheese can safely be reheated providing it has been properly stored. This means that it should have been cooled, covered, and placed in the refrigerator as soon as possible.
When food is at ambient room temperature the risk of harmful bacteria rises so it’s important that it’s refrigerated as soon as practical.
If you know that the dish has been properly handled it is safe to reheat it, providing that you ensure it is hot all the way through.
This means that the dish should be heated throughout until its piping hot as this provides protection against bacteria multiplying.
Can You Freeze Cauliflower Cheese?
If you don’t think you’ll be able to eat your cauliflower cheese within the next 2-3 days, freezing could be another option. Transfer to a freezer-safe container, cover, label, and store in your freezer for up to six months.
Some experts may tell you not to freeze your cauliflower cheese, but it won’t make you ill. You may find that the sauce on cauliflower cheese cane become a little watery after being frozen and defrosted, so it’s usually best avoided if possible.
If you choose to freeze it, you might want to ensure that the dish used in the freezer is one that can stand the microwave or oven too. This will enable you to transfer it directly without having to carry out a messy transfer in between.
Can You Reheat Cauliflower Cheese Two Times or More?
Contrary to popular belief, it is entirely possible to re-heat a dish more than once, including cauliflower cheese.
Most food experts don’t recommend it though, because every time it’s heated and cooled, there’s another opportunity for bacteria to multiply and grow. Not all bacteria are destroyed by heat, so there is always a small risk attached to reheating food.
For home-cooked cauliflower cheese where you can be certain of the conditions in which it was kept after being heated, it’s possible to re-heat the dish more than once—if there’s any left!
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