Food Safety: Consumer Guidance

This table of frozen food safety shows how to determine if food is safe to eat after a power outage that affects your freezer.

Food Still contains ice crystals and feels as cold as if refrigerated Held above 40°F for more than 2 hours
Meat, Poultry, Seafood
Beef, veal, lamb, pork and ground meats Refreeze Discard
Poultry and ground poultry Refreeze Discard
Variety meats (liver, kidney, heart, chitterlings) Refreeze Discard
Casseroles, stews, soups Refreeze Discard
Fish, shellfish, breaded seafood products Refreeze. However, there will be some texture and flavor loss. Discard
Milk Refreeze. May lose some texture. Discard
Eggs (out of shell) and egg products Refreeze Discard
Ice cream, frozen yogurt Discard (poor quality) Discard
Cheese (soft and semi-soft) Refreeze. May lose texture Discard
Hard cheeses Refreeze Refreeze
Shredded cheeses Refreeze Discard
Casseroles containing milk, cream, eggs, soft cheese Refreeze Discard
Cheesecake Refreeze Discard
Juices Refreeze Refreeze. Discard if mold, yeasty smell or sliminess develops.
Home or commercially packaged Refreeze. Will change in texture and flavor. Refreeze. Discard if mold, yeasty smell or sliminess develops.
Juices Refreeze Discard after held above 40°F for 6 hours.
Home or commercially packaged or blanched Refreeze. May suffer texture and flavor loss. Discard after held above 40°F for 6 hours
Breads, Pastries
Breads, rolls, muffins, cakes (without custard fillings) Refreeze Refreeze
Cakes, pies, pastries with custard or cheese filling Refreeze Discard
Pie crusts Refreeze Refreeze
Commercial and homemade bread dough Refreeze. Some quality loss may occur. Refreeze. Considerable quality loss.
Casseroles: pasta, rice-based Refreeze Discard
Breakfast items—waffles, pancakes, bagels Refreeze Refreeze
Frozen meal, entree, specialty items (pizza, sausage and biscuit, meat pie, convenience foods) Refreeze Discard