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How Long Does Shrimp That Has Been Thawed Last In The Refrigerator?

However, if you’re new to cooking with shrimp you might be wondering: How long does thawed shrimp last in the refrigerator?

In this article, I will cover some key information about thawed shrimp, including how long thawed shrimp lasts in the refrigerator.

How Long Does Shrimp That Has Been Thawed Last In The Refrigerator

So, let’s get into it.

How Long Does Thawed Shrimp Last in the Refrigerator?

Once your shrimp has been defrosted in the refrigerator, you can keep it in the refrigerator for a further 1 to 2 days before it will start to go bad according to the USDA.

Bearing this in mind, you will need to cook your thawed shrimp within 2 days to ensure that they are of the best quality and are still safe to eat.

This also comes with the caveat that if your shrimp have been thawed in the microwave or under cold water, they will need to be cooked immediately without refrigerating. Shrimp should also never be left at room temperature for longer than 2 hours.

Taking these precautions will help minimize your risk of food poisoning.

A Guide on How to Freeze Shrimp

You’d think freezing shrimp is relatively simple, but there is a correct method to ensure that your shrimp remain in the best possible condition in the freezer until you decide to use them.

Step one – First, you will need to prepare your shrimp for the freezer by snapping off their heads by hand or with a sharp knife. However, at this stage you can leave their shell and veins intact.

Step two – Next, you will need to wash and thoroughly rinse the shrimp. The water that is left on the shrimp will freeze and help to preserve the shrimp.

Step three – Following this, you will need to pack the shrimp in containers, tupperware, or plastic yogurt containers. You will need to pack them as tightly as possible to limit the amount of air that can get into the container.

Step four – Lastly, you will need to prepare a brine solution. You can make this brine by adding 2 tablespoons of salt per quart of water. 

Step five – Once you have prepared the brine, you will need to cover the shrimp, leaving a minimum of half an inch of headspace.

Step six – Lastly, you will need to add the containers to your freezer and allow the shrimp to freeze until you want to cook with them!

A Guide on How to Defrost Frozen Shrimp

Step one – To begin, you will first need to get your frozen shrimp out of the freezer.

Step two – Transfer the frozen shrimps from their container to a colander. Place a dish or plate beneath the colander to ensure that no water spills in your refrigerator as the shrimps begin to thaw.

Step three – Place the colander in the refrigerator and allow your shrimp to thaw. Shrimp thawed in your refrigerator will last for 1 to 2 days before they go bad.

Step four – Once your shrimp have completely defrosted, it’s time to cook with them.


If you’re under tight time constraints to defrost your shrimp, you can defrost them in cold water. However, you will need to make sure that you use shrimp that has been defrosted like this immediately.

Alternatively, you can leave your shrimp at room temperature to let them thaw. However, if you do, it’s important that you don’t leave your shrimp at room temperature for more than 2 hours and you will need to cook them as soon as they’ve thawed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to eat thawed shrimp?

Yes, it’s safe to eat shrimp that’s been defrosted in the refrigerator for an additional one to two days before cooking.

That being said, you will need to cook shrimp that has been defrosted in the microwave or under cold water immediately.

How do you know if shrimp has gone bad?

You will be able to tell if your shrimp has gone bad by simply giving the bowl a sniff. Fresh shrimp should have a mild smell, whereas bad shrimp will have a strong, ammonia-like smell. It’s pretty unmistakable once you’ve smelled it, as it’s a much fishier smell than fresh shrimp.

However, if you’ve never cooked with shrimp before, checking the texture is another check you can make if you’re unsure whether your shrimp are still okay to eat. 

The texture of fresh shrimp will be firm and crisp. Take a shrimp between your fingers and give it a little squeeze. the texture of the shrimp seems mushy in any way, then you will need to get rid of them. 

The color of shrimp will also indicate whether they’re bad or not. Black spots are a clear indication that your shrimps need to be thrown away. However, if your shrimp have been left for this long, the smell will be the first thing to hit you.

Can defrosted shrimp be refrozen?

Yes, you can refreeze shrimp provided that they thawed in the refrigerator and that you refreeze them within the 2 day window to ensure that they remain fresh. 

However, it’s important to note that you will only want to do this once, as constant thawing and freezing of the shrimp will compromise the flavor and quality of the shrimp.

Bearing this in mind, you should only thaw as many shrimp as you need for your meal for the best results and to prevent the texture and taste from deteriorating. 

Jess Smith