Seafood is a great gift from the ocean, where we receive fish, octopus, squid, crab, and many more sea edible creatures. It would be a waste for those who can’t eat natural seafood. However, there is still another way as now the food industry has presented artificial seafood like imitation crab, which is quite famous in dishes like salad, hotpots, sushi, etc.

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What would be the differences between natural crab and imitation crab’s shelf life, and how long does imitation crab last in the fridge? Let’s find out the answers in today’s article!

How Long Does Imitation Crab Last In The Fridge?


Answer: The opened imitation crab can be good for 3 hours in room temperature condition after buying without changing taste. But it can be last for a week with proper storage method in the fridge and a maximum of 6 months in the freezer.
First of all, like any other seafood or imitation seafood, it’s a wise choice to store imitation crab at a cool/freezing temperature rather than room temperature, even with cooked food like smoked salmon, for example. Every kind of seafood cannot stand staying at room temperature for more than 3 hours, so you should think of storing the food in the fridge before it spoils. The question of “how long does imitation crab meat last in the fridge? depends on two factors. More specifically, there are usually two situations when putting imitation crab inside the fridge to preserve: you have opened it, or you haven’t opened it yet. Each situation will require a different storing time. If you store the leftover imitation crab, make sure it doesn’t surpass five days. Since the food is open to the air, the storage time is quite short. Unless you can have a more professional way of packaging the leftover crab meat, like wrapping them with plastic wrap or putting them in an airtight container, the meat can probably last for one week.If the crab is still sealed and unopened, you can put it in the fridge and expect it to last for three months or to the expiry date. However, do not forget to eat it after that if you do not want the crab to smudge or spoil.

How Long Will Frozen Imitation Crab Meat Remain Edible?

Freezing seafood is a brilliant and effective way to keep them edible for a long time. To be more specific, freezing can keep seafood fresh and tasty.So, can you freeze imitation crab meat? And how long does imitation crab last in the freezer? The answer is, imitation crab can be frozen for long-term storage.If you have already used them, fridge-storage is a must, and you should consume them as fast as possible. It remains safe to eat for at least six months for a sealed package of imitation crab, compared to 3 months when stored in the fridge only. Moreover, be mindful that freezing imitation crab requires you to apply proper storage methods. For example, keeping them in an airtight container is a great idea to lock the moisture. But this method only applies to unopened imitation crab meat.
Likewise, the answer for “Can imitation crab be frozen once you’ve opened it ?” is no.

Is It Safe To Eat Expired Imitation Crab? 

As we have concluded above, imitation crab meat is safe to eat after six months of being frozen. However, sometimes you might forget about this deadline and intentionally consume it 3-4 days after the expiry date.So, will it be harmful to your health? The answer is no. However, everything will have its own shelf life to make sure keeping the taste and nutrition, so we did not recommend to use the expired one.To be more specific, shortly-after-expired imitation crabs will not make your body feel sick or give you any digest problems. But of course, we don’t recommend you to do this often.
To avoid this situation, make sure to look at the expiry day if you have stored it for a long time before cooking it. Or you can stick a note about the day you begin to freeze it and calculate to see wherever the deadline has passed or not.

What Are The Signs Telling That Frozen Imitation Crab Meat Is No Longer Good?

Like any other seafood, you can tell from many signs that imitation crab is spoilage. So, how to tell if imitation crab meat is bad?Firstly, after you have frozen it for a long time, you might notice some odd-colored spots on the frozen imitation crab meat. This sign might indicate freezer burn, which means that the crab is not inedible, but the taste and texture will have a negative impact.

Secondly, if you see green molds or any mold types, you cannot consume the crab anymore. Throw it away immediately and purchase new imitation crabs as a substitution.
Thirdly, smell can also tell if imitation crab is spoiled or not. Like spoiled fish, spoiled imitation crab will smell like foul fish, along with a slimy surface and sour taste.

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How Long Can Imitation Crab Stand At Room Temperature?

How long is crab meat good for at room temperature depends on what you do after taking it out from the freezer. Once you take out frozen imitation crab to cook and consume, it should stay at room temperature for a maximum of three hours before the environmental factors spoil it. In detail, the change in temperature from 32 °F to up to 140 °F creates an ideal environment for bacteria to grow and attack your food.Besides, one small tip for you when you have accidentally left the imitation crab outside for too long is to boil them thoroughly in medium heat to gain back the original flavor and texture.

And that’s everything you should know about “How long does imitation crab last in the fridge?” We hope that you can always enjoy fresh, delicious imitation crab by handling a proper storage method for them. Thank you for reading our article, and see you later in the next post!