How Long is Tuna Salad Good For?

There is no easier lunch than preparing some tuna salad. Tuna salad is versatile as a menu item and can be used in tortillas, on bread, dipped with chips or topped onto crackers. If you decide to make a batch of tuna salad and end up with some extra, here is how long tuna salad will stay good for. 

Tuna salad is good for up to two hours at room temperature. You can store tuna salad between three to five days in the refridgerator. Tuna salad has more of a chance to make it through a full five days in the refrigerator if covered properly. 

You can also freeze tuna salad and have great results even after a few weeks and up to three months. 

Shelf Life of Tuna Salad

Tuna is a seafood that can come prepackaged in cans or other sealed containers. It is a food that will last on its own between three to five days in the refrigerator if opened. Most tuna salad will follow the same guidelines as tuna fish unprepared on its own. 

The shelf life of tuna salad that has been prepared will usually last between three to five days in the refrigerator and about two hours left out at room temperature. Tuna salad lasts longer if it is properly sealed or covered during its time on the shelf. 

How Long Does Homemade Tuna Salad Last?

The ingredients that you put in the tuna salad will determine how long the tuna salad will last if homemade. Canned and prepared tuna will usually keep between three to five days in the refrigerator on its own. When adding other ingredients like dressings, this shelf life may change. 

See also  How Long is Sushi Good For? Expert Tips for Safe Consumption


Yogurt is a great alternative to traditional mayonnaise and mustard tuna salad recipes. The drawback with this method is that the yogurt can separate within the first couple of days and begin to break down a lot sooner. Yogurt based tuna salad is best consumed immediately but if you must refrigerate some, that leftover portion will only last up to three days. 

Regular Mayonnaise

Regular store-bought mayonnaise does the trick for tuna salad in most recipes. This dressing is responsible for the commonly noted sweet and tangy taste of most tuna salads. It is a sturdy base and does not break down immediately upon refrigeration so it will last between three to five days. 

Homemade Dressing

Homemade dressings can be great because they are lower in fat and sugars and don’t contain excess ingredients. One of the major issues with homemade dressing is that they will separate and quite quickly. Tuna salad made with homemade dressings of any sort will only look good for about one or two days and will only be consumable for three days in the refrigerator. 

Regular Ranch Dressing

Ranch dressing that is store-bought will also hold up in the refrigerator similar to mayonnaise. If used in prepared tuna salad, ranch dressing won’t separate or turn funky before it goes bad. Tuna salad prepared with ranch dressing is good between the three to five day mark in the refrigerator. 

How Long Can Tuna Salad Last in the Fridge?

If you have made some extra tuna salad and need to store it, the refrigerator can be an effective place. Because tuna salad contains seafood and other ingredients that can break down quickly, it is important to know how long can tuna salad last in the fridge. 

See also  How Long Does Spaghetti and Meatballs Last in the Fridge?

Tuna salad can be stored in the refrigerator for between three to five days. Any time after five days, tuna salad is considered unsafe to eat and can make you sick. 

How Long Can Tuna Salad Stay Out?

Sometimes you don’t have a refrigerator or you are out and about camping or on the go. Tuna salad can be left out for a time before it becomes unsafe to eat. Remember to keep the tuna salad covered with plastic wrap or another covering to keep it fresh until the two hour hold time expires.

If you leave tuna salad out it is important to remember that it has about two hours before it is no longer good and you should throw it away. Tuna salad that has been left out and covered has about a two hour shelf life in room temperature. 

If the tuna salad has not been covered then make sure to inspect it before eating. Any odd flavors, colors, or aromas should be noted and the tuna salad thrown away if there is question about its age or integrity. 


Tuna salad can last on the shelf at room temperature for about two hours. The same tuna salad can last in the refrigerator from three to five days. The length of the shelf life for the tuna salad initially depends on the ingredients used and the type of dressing used as its base.