Does Frozen Pizza Go Bad?- How long does it last?

For most of its lifetime, a frozen pizza stays good in the freezer until it is time to cook, which means that it has a long shelf life. So do frozen pizzas ever go bad or expire? 

Frozen pizzas do go bad but not commonly. Frozen pizza might lose its flavors, textures, and overall quality, but it does not mean it cannot be consumed.

That is assuming that nothing drastic happened while it was stored. When the frozen pizza is not stored properly, there is also a chance that it can develop bacteria or even mold.

Since frozen pizzas are made with machines, there is always a possibility that they might have gathered dirt from the industrial conveyer belt, so it is best to store it the right way.

Luckily for us pizza lovers, there are signs we can look for to know whether or not the frozen pizza has gone bad beyond the turning point so we know when to throw it away.

Aside from that, I will also show you how to store frozen pizza properly so it can last in your freezer and have pizza ready to be cooked anytime you want.

Do Frozen Pizzas Expire?

Yes, for every perishable food, there is an expiration date. Frozen pizza, it does last longer compared to other food, but it does have an expiration date which you need to keep track of.

Usually, frozen pizza has an expiration date that is set 18 months after it has been packaged. If properly stored(unopened), it can last longer in your freezer.

If the pizza has been stored immediately after purchasing it, you do not have to worry about it going bad anytime soon.

However, there are problems like freezer burns, where the pizza loses all its moisture and forms crystals on the surface.

When this happens, it usually means that the pizza has come down in quality. The texture can be soggy when cooked, and the flavors are bland or tasteless.

So as long as you store the frozen pizza properly, the 18-month expiration date should be a reliable measurement to see that the pizza has not gone bad.

Does Expired Frozen Pizza Mean Pizza Has Gone Bad?

Frozen pizza that has passed its expiration date does not necessarily mean that it is unsafe to eat. You can still eat frozen pizza that has gone past its expiration date.

See, “best-by” dates mean that the product is in perfect condition and its quality is still intact by that set date, so you can still eat it beyond that, but it will not have the same quality from that date.

Expiration dates, on the other hand, mean that frozen pizza is not safe anymore to eat, and there are chances of getting ill if you eat the food.

Look for the expiration and Best By date before buying frozen pizzas

Manufacturers set the expiration date, which means that the pizza is not guaranteed to be safe, and there are chances of food poisoning(in the worse case).

Even if there are no signs that the pizza has gone bad, the pizza might still be bad from freezer burns and other factors.

Frozen pizza can be safe to eat indefinitely as long as it has been stored properly. Just don’t expect the same quality and flavor when the frozen pizza is past its best-by date.

And never expect anything past the expiration date, lol.

How Long Does Frozen Pizza Last After Expiration?

Frozen pizza(sealed) can last for another 6 months after expiration. The main thing to remember here is that frozen pizza should not exceed 50% of its expiration date.

So frozen pizzas can last for 18 months and should not be extended for more than 9 months after the set expiration date.

However, if you ensure that it was stored properly and stayed at a temperature below 0 degrees Fahrenheit, it lasts for a long time. 

Wrap your pizza well if it is not sealed so it does not come in contact with moisture and lasts longer

Many say frozen pizza will last indefinitely and is safe to eat, but the quality will deteriorate over time. As long as the food stays frozen, bacteria will not develop, which means it is safe to eat.

But do I recommend it? Absolutely NOT.

So you have 18 months to consume the frozen pizza you bought to ensure that it still keeps its quality but will stay safe to eat after that, although it will not taste as great.

There are, of course, a lot of factors that affect how long the frozen pizza will last after its best-by date.

Such are the storage, packaging, and preparing the frozen pizza, and more. So make sure you check for signs before consuming a frozen pizza that has passed its expiration date.

Does Frozen Pizza Go Bad If Left Out?

Yes, frozen pizza, even when sealed, will go bad if left out at room temperature for more than 2 hours. This is also applicable to other cooked food as the USDA suggests.

If the cooking method you use needs the pizza to be defrosted, you can leave the pizza covered at room temperature for a few minutes or defrost it in the fridge.

If kept beyond a few minutes to an hour at room temperature, the pizza will start to collect bacteria that will develop quickly the warmer the room is. So make sure to refreeze or cook the pizza as soon as possible.

Is It Okay To Eat An Expired Frozen Pizza?

You can still eat frozen pizza that has gone past its expiration date. This is the same with other frozen food as long as they have been stored properly.

If you open your frozen pizza and see that it has passed its expiration date, you can still cook and eat it as long as it does not have spoilage.

We will also look at the signs indicating frozen pizza has gone bad, so stick around.

The only thing that might upset you is that it will likely not taste the same. The flavor and texture would probably decrease in quality beyond the expiration date.

Although, I would NEVER eat it past expiration and do not recommend doing so.

P.S.- If you eat a pizza after the expiration date, then eat at your own risk.

How Long Can A Frozen Pizza Last In The Freezer?(MUST READ, IMPORTANT!!)

A pack of unopened frozen pizza lasts in the freezer for approximately 18 months. If it is stored properly and the temperature is consistent at 0 degrees Fahrenheit, it can even extend to 2 years.

Frozen PizzaIn The FridgeIn The Freezer
Frozen Pizza
3 to 4 days after it
has thawed
18 months
Opened Frozen Pizza3 to 4 days1 to 2 months
Leftover Frozen Pizza3 to 4 days1 to 2 months 

That is, considering the packaging and seal have not been damaged. If the frozen pizza has been opened, it will not last long.

Once the frozen pizza has been opened, I usually give it 2 months in the freezer. It does not go bad after that, but I observed that it declines in quality when it is opened and refrozen.

How Long Can A Frozen Pizza Stay In The Fridge?

Unopened/Sealed frozen pizza can stay good for 3-4 days in the fridge. It is a good way to thaw frozen pizza by putting it in the fridge overnight.

Thawing frozen pizza usually takes 3 to 4 hours in the fridge. After that time, the frozen pizza will last for 3 to 4 days in the fridge.

Once the pizza has been removed from the freezer, it is at risk of gathering bacteria, so placing it in the fridge will prolong its shelf life even after it has been thawed.

Always note that bacteria have a harder time developing and living in colder environments. So while frozen pizza only lasts 2 hours at room temperature, it can last 4 days in the fridge.

How To Store Frozen Pizza Correctly

Prolonging the shelf life of frozen pizza is easy. You need to store it properly so it does not develop mold or bacteria.

Here is how to do it.

What You Will Need

  • Plastic wrap
  • Aluminum foil
  • Airtight container


Step 1: Wrap the frozen pizza with plastic wrap to ensure it does not lose moisture. This will also protect the frozen pizza from cross-contamination with other foods in the freezer.

Step 2: Wrap the frozen pizza with aluminum foil to prevent freezer burns. Freezer burn is when the pizza starts to form ice crystals indicating that the moisture is lost.

Step 3: Place the wrapped frozen pizza in an airtight container or a zip-lock bag. Ensure the container is sealed so no moisture and bacteria get in.

Stored Mini Pizzas

Step 4: Put the frozen pizza in the freezer and ensure the temperature is 0 degrees Fahrenheit or -18 degrees Celsius.

Your frozen pizza will be safe in the freezer for up to 18 months, and you can cook it whenever you want a delicious pizza meal.

How Can You Tell If Frozen Pizza Has Gone Bad?

There are some clear indications that your frozen pizza has gone bad. The signs can start to show even before the expiration date of the frozen pizza.

Once the following tell-tale signs occur, ensure you throw away the pizza as it will no longer be safe to consume.

1. Ice Crystals Indicating Freezer Burn

When frozen pizza is stored in the freezer for a long time and is not wrapped properly, it can start to dry out.

The moisture inside the pizza gets out and forms ice crystals on the surface. Patches of discoloration can also indicate freezer burns.

But is it still safe to eat?

Frozen pizza with freezer burns is still safe to eat if the only sign is the ice crystals. However, it will not have the same taste, texture, and overall quality as before.

2. Mold Formation

The clearest sign that your frozen pizza has gone bad is mold formation. There can be spots on the pizza with mold or the whole surface has mold on it.

Mould On pizza

Whether the pizza only has a patch of mold or a few of it, throw it away.

3. Slimy Texture

Pizza toppings are the first that will most likely spoil your frozen pizza. When the toppings spoil, they can develop a slimy texture, which clearly indicates the pizza going bad.

4. Odor

Even frozen pizzas use fresh toppings that are frozen afterward. The pizza should have a pleasant aroma, a combination of dough, and a cheesy smell.

Although I do understand that cheese might not have the most pleasant smell but you will know what spoiled cheese smells like.

If the frozen pizza gives off a rancid smell or odor that is a bit off, it is time to throw it in the garbage.

What Happens If You Eat Frozen Pizza After It Has Spoiled?

Frozen pizza that has spoiled can cause stomach aches and diarrhea. This is due to some bacteria that have occurred and developed in frozen pizza.

While freezing pizza drastically lowers the chance of bacteria development, the pizza will start to gather bacteria once it is thawed or left outside.

A small number of bacteria that have been consumed might not affect your body, but problems will start to occur once there are enough bacteria in the frozen pizza, problems will start to occur.

If all or any of the signs above occur on your frozen pizza, it is better to throw it away than to risk cooking and eating it.

Can You Freeze Fresh Pizza Dough?

Yes, you can freeze fresh pizza dough after you make it at home. It is one of the safest ways to store pizza dough, as it will last in the freezer for up to 3-4 months.

Make sure you have allowed the pizza dough to rise before freezing it. If you plan on freezing a large amount of dough, divide it into at least 2 dough balls.

You will have more space in the freezer for other food. 

Note: Make sure to allow the pizza dough to ferment or rise before storing it in an airtight container and the freezer.

What Are The Best Frozen Pizzas?

I have tried a lot of frozen pizza brands recently, and here are my top picks:

1. DiGiorno Frozen Pizza

DiGiorno is one if not the most popular frozen pizza brand on the market, they have a lot of options to choose from, but my favorite is the pan pepperoni pizza.

2. Amy’s Kitchen Cheese Pizza

Cheese pizza is also one of my favorites, and I found that Amy’s has the best cheese pizza if you choose to go with frozen pizza.

3. Red Baron Pizza

The crispy crust on Red Baron’s pepperoni pizza made this brand stick with me. Top that with gooey cheese and a delicious pepperoni pizza meal.

4. Tombstone Roadhouse Pizza

This amazing loaded double deluxe pizza from Tombstone Roadhouse pizza is one of the best frozen pizzas with an explosion of flavors from the different pizza toppings.

5. California Pizza Kitchen

CPK is another popular frozen pizza brand that sells the best BBQ Chicken Pizza. With seasoned white meat and a combination of mozzarella cheese and gouda, this pizza is sure to please.

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