Plus, how to store the rest of your Thanksgiving leftovers. 

Credit: Photo: Jen Causey, Food Styling: Gordon Sawyer and Tina Stamos, Prop Styling: Lydia Pursell

We love Thanksgiving food. Like, we really, really love it. It’s kind of our bread and butter.

But loving something doesn’t make it last. To keep your leftovers safe and enjoyable for as long as possible, you have to make sure they’re stored correctly.

We’ve compiled some storage guidelines here, but it’s important to remember: Use common sense when deciding what to save and what to throw away. If something smells funny or doesn’t look right, it doesn’t matter if it’s a day old or a week old—don’t eat it.

Pumpkin Pie

Pictured Recipe: Roasted Pumpkin Pie

Don’t let the packaged pumpkin pies you see sitting out in stores fool you—homemade pumpkin pies should be refrigerated.

Many of the ones baked in-store or mass-produced have preservatives, which allow them to sit at room temperature without going bad.

You can keep your homemade pumpkin pie in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. After that, toss it or keep it up to 2 months in the freezer.

Pecan Pie

Pictured Recipe: Oxbow Bakery Pecan Pie

If you’re going to consume your pecan pie within 24 hours, it’s fine to leave it on the counter. Keep it covered in the fridge if you’re storing it for longer than one day. After 3 to 4 days, toss it or keep it up to 2 months in the freezer.

Apple Pie

Great news! That apple pie can stay on the counter or in your pantry for about two days. If you plan to keep it longer than that, keep it in the fridge for up to a week. After that, toss it or keep it up to 2 months in the freezer.


Pictured recipe: Classic Roast Turkey

Eating turkey that hasn’t been stored correctly can make you very sick, so don’t do it.

Your leftover meat will last 3 to 4 days in the fridge and up to 3 months in the freezer.

Cranberry Sauce

Cranberry sauce can stay in the fridge for about two weeks or in the freezer for 2 to 3 months.

Mashed Potatoes

Pictured Recipe: Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes

Those mashed potatoes will be fine in the fridge for about a week. If you stick them in the freezer, though, they can last up to a whole year.

Sweet Potato Casserole

Sweet potato casserole will be OK in the fridge for 3 to 5 days, and for about a month in the freezer. However, casseroles topped with marshmallows might taste kinda funny after being refrigerated or frozen.


Pictured recipe: Double-Stock Turkey Gravy

Gravy should be kept in the fridge and eaten pretty quickly after Thanksgiving—like in the next day or two. However, the freezer can handle it for 2 to 3 months.

Green Beans

Pictured recipe: Lemon-Feta Green Beans

Green beans will be fine for a few days in the fridge, but can last up to a year in the freezer.


Your stuffing will keep for about a week in the refrigerator and for about a month in the freezer.