Storing dried fish

Product quality

  1. Readiness degree. Drying fish is not a matter of one day. The catch is first salted for 3-5 days, then soaked, and finally dried. Ideal for the final stage is sunny, but not hot weather, with a light breeze. The fish should be hidden in the shade from direct sunlight! The result should look like this: clean and even gray scales, dry gills and tail, a firm back and a dense belly of the finished fish. Such copies can be safely sent for storage.
  2. When choosing fish when purchasing, it is better to carefully inspect it and not see if it has any flaws. Signs of mold are unacceptable. Also, nothing should indicate that the product has been damaged by insects. If the fish is wet or, worse, sticky to the touch, it is better to leave it alone; you should not expect anything good from such a snack. Exhausted fish that have become “wooden” are also not an option. Most likely, they became mummified due to being stored for too long.
  3. Under the scales of an excellent dried fish there should be elastic, not overdried, but not wet, light brown, pink-tinged flesh, without yellowness or “rust,” as signs of spoilage are sometimes called. By sniffing, you can easily determine whether a given fish deserves to be eaten: the rather specific aroma should still be pleasant, without repulsive notes.

So, now that we know exactly how to distinguish a good snack from a low-quality product, we can talk about how to properly store dried fish. There are several factors that are important to consider when wanting to stock up on it.

Salted and dried fish

Many people like to eat dried fish: roach, rudd, perch, sabrefish, bream and others. Let's find out how long it can be stored and under what conditions. It is stored for a long time, since salt acts as a preservative. If the fish has been dried well, then with proper storage it can last for a year. It should be wrapped in thick wrapping paper and kept in a dry, cool and dark place.

Previously, fish were often wrapped in newspaper, without thinking about the fact that printing ink contained lead. If you categorically reject newspaper, you can use craft paper, parchment, or a tin or glass jar with a lid. Dried and dried fish are stored in cardboard boxes, wicker baskets, and linen bags.

For those who live in hot climates, we recommend placing any fish in the freezer. This is the only way it can be stored for a long time.

Now let's talk about salted fish. Many housewives buy fresh or frozen product, making home salting, but you can also find a variety of varieties of salted fish on store shelves. If you store fish in brine (brine, as experts say), the shelf life increases. The amount of salt used during preparation is also of great importance.

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How long to store in the refrigerator, at a temperature of 0. +3°C, days

Previously, fish were often wrapped in newspaper, without thinking about the fact that printing ink contained lead. If you categorically reject newspaper, you can use craft paper, parchment, or a tin or glass jar with a lid. Dried and dried fish are stored in cardboard boxes, wicker baskets, and linen bags.

Long-term storage methods

Dried fish should not be confused with dried fish. The first is used as a finished product, and the second as a semi-finished product, which is subsequently subjected to heat treatment.

To dry the catch, sometimes they don’t even use salt, or they salt it for only a short time and then don’t resort to soaking. In addition, the drying and drying processes differ in duration. Drying takes only a few days, but traditional cold drying can take weeks.

Drying fish is essentially one of the methods of preservation and is used for very long-term storage of the catch. There is also a difference in the method used depending on the type of fish: fatty varieties are dried, and skinny ones are dried.

Dried fish is great for making broths and sauces. Dry fish can be ground into flour and added to fish cakes or gravies. The storage conditions for dried fish are not much different from those necessary for preserving dried fish. An underground floor, a refrigerator, and a freezer will do. The container used is a wooden box or basket. Wrapping paper is also needed.


  • temperature not higher than 10°C,
  • darkness,
  • ventilation.

The trick with a candle in a jar to create a vacuum will work perfectly, but there is another way: pour a little alcohol into the bottom, put dried fish in the jar and roll up the container with a metal lid.

If you like not only fish, but also crayfish with beer, read a detailed article about how to store crayfish; this matter also has its own subtleties.

As a fish lover,

Light mode

Light, especially sunlight, significantly shortens the shelf life of almost every product, because under its influence not only vitamins are destroyed (for example, B1, also known as riboflavin), but also the process of protein decomposition and fat oxidation starts. A dark place is undoubtedly one of the most important conditions for the safety of any stocks and fish, in particular.

Sunlight is not suitable for long-term storage. This fish at the market near Lake Baikal is a delicious omul, which is quickly snapped up by numerous tourists.

In limbo

Hanging storage is the most popular option for storing product. The attic, veranda, loggia, balcony, basement, storage room are suitable for these purposes. The room must be well ventilated.

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You should not choose a lit place. If the sun's rays constantly hit the fish, it will become very dry and tough.

In the case where the product is not spoiled, but is excessively dried, the problem can be solved. To do this, the fish is wrapped in foil with a small amount of water and placed in the oven at a temperature of 150 degrees for a quarter of an hour.

Before fish are sent for storage, they are sorted by size. Each large carcass is wrapped separately. Thick paper is used for this. This will help prevent the product from drying out too much.

Small fish are placed in several copies in a bag made of kraft paper, the packaging is sealed with tape.

The product can be hung on hooks or placed in linen bags. It is advisable to cover the hanging carcasses with two layers of gauze. Then not a single insect can spoil the product.

Where to store dried fish

It is recommended to store dried fish at a temperature not exceeding 10˚C. Excessive heat will inevitably lead to rapid deterioration of the product, and a characteristic repulsive odor will appear.

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The optimal humidity level is 70-80%. It is important not to let the fish dry out, as this will spoil its taste and texture. In addition, the fat in its composition will begin to go rancid, the meat will become bitter, and eating it can cause not just an upset stomach, but even serious food poisoning.

Sometimes lovers of dried fish stock up on this product for future use. But in order to get the maximum pleasure and benefit from eating fish, you should take care of its proper storage.

After all, a spoiled product not only loses its consumer properties and beneficial qualities, but can also cause food poisoning.

The first rule when storing dried fish: it must be fresh, of high quality, without signs of oxidation or damage by microorganisms.

In industrial production conditions, dried fish is stored:

  • in wooden boxes;
  • in corrugated cardboard boxes;
  • in linen bags for storing food products;
  • in special paper bags.

But many are more interested in the question of how to store dried fish at home.

It’s worth noting right away that when storing fish you should completely forget about plastic bags and foil, since this is the fastest way to spoil it.

There are several recommendations on how to store dried fish at home:

  • wrapped in paper, hung in a cool and dark room;
  • in the freezer, wrapping the fish in several layers of paper;
  • in a tin jar, tightly closing it with a lid.

Dried fish is stored in a cool place with good ventilation and air humidity within 70-75%. Fatty dried fish are best frozen.

Different storage conditions correspond to different shelf life:

  • at air temperatures up to 10º C and humidity 75%, dried fish can be stored for 120 days;
  • in special rooms and chambers at a temperature of -5º C and a humidity of 75%, the shelf life of fish is increased to 1 year;
  • At a temperature of 20º C, fish can be stored for no more than 60 days.

Thus, how long you can store dried fish depends on its fat content, air humidity and temperature. The most delicious and healthy fish is freshly dried fish; you should not store it for a very long time or freeze it.

But if the fish is stored for future use, then it is important to ensure the preservation of its taste, so the question of how to store dried fish so as not to dry out comes up quite often.

The easiest way to prevent fish from drying out is to wrap it in several layers of paper and store it for a short time.

Dried fish is not subjected to heat treatment during cooking, which means it contains the entire range of vitamins and microelements. In terms of taste, dried fish is superior to dried fish.

Following the rules for storing dried fish will allow you to preserve the nutrients in it and fully enjoy its rich taste.

Since dried fish is a perishable product, it should be taken into account that different storage conditions can either extend or shorten the shelf life.

Storage methodShelf life
(in months)
In limbo2-4
Boxes, wooden boxes6
Tin containers8-10
Glass containers4
In the freezer10-12
At room temperature1-2

The shelf life depends on the type of fish and its fat content. It is not recommended to store different types mixed together.

VarietyOptimal storage conditions
TarankaIn a wooden box, wrapped in thick paper
VoblaFreezer in portion bags
BreamContainers made of wood, cardboard, wicker

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Regardless of the chosen method of preserving the product, it is necessary to monitor the temperature regime (1-8 degrees Celsius). The humidity of the storage should not go beyond the range of 70-80%.

The storage must be well ventilated. Compliance with the standards will ensure the safety of fish for a long time.

How can you tell if a product is spoiled?

The smell will clearly indicate that the fish is spoiled. The aroma of rotten fish is considered one of the most disgusting in the world, so it is difficult not to notice it.

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In addition to the smell, spoiled chilled fish is given out:

  • sticky scales, which leave a dent when pressed;
  • if there is a head, gray or brown gills, as well as dull eyes;

  • soft, falling apart meat fibers (fresh fibers are dense);
  • for salmon fish - changes in the color of the meat from red to gray;
  • when parsing the fish, part of its bones is separated from the pulp;
  • If possible, you can place the fish in water - the rotten one will float, and the fresh one will sink.

The freshness or spoilage of salted, dried, dried, smoked and pickled fish is determined by smell and appearance . Spoiled frozen fish are more difficult to recognize. It is necessary to carefully examine the fish for signs of spoilage.

Another way is to stick a knife hot on a fire into its thickness, and then sniff the smell. Spoiled fish will give itself away with the smell of rotten meat.

smoked or salted fish in the same way , only instead of a hot knife you can use a toothpick, skewer or any other sharp object.

Despite the fact that many types of fish can be stored for quite a long time, it is better not to delay their consumption until the very end of the expiration date.

Even properly organized storage of fish does not always prevent its premature spoilage , since this product can spoil in just a couple of hours due to a non-working refrigerator or non-compliance by manufacturers with production technology.

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Another way is to stick a knife hot on a fire into its thickness, and then sniff the smell. Spoiled fish will give itself away with the smell of rotten meat.

Storing dried fish in a wooden container

Carcasses are successfully stored in wooden containers (boxes, baskets).

The container is covered with cloth or gauze to prevent rodents and insects from entering. The container is covered with canvas on the outside.

Each layer of product is separated using sheets of paper. Newspapers cannot be used.

A pantry, shed, balcony, or attic are suitable for storage. The room must be maintained at a low temperature and uninterrupted circulation of fresh air must be ensured.

The product is perfectly stored in glass containers. The container must first be thoroughly washed and sterilized.

The fish is placed upside down. If the length of the product is greater than the height of the container, then the carcasses are divided into several parts. It is necessary to gut the fish and cut off the heads.

This will not affect the taste of the prepared product. Rational use of the container increases the capacity by 2 times.

A small amount of alcohol is poured into the bottom of the container and the carcasses are placed. The containers are sealed with metal lids.

Another method of saving involves creating a vacuum in the container. After the carcasses are placed inside, a pre-lit candle is placed in the jar. Oxygen burns and a vacuum is formed, ensuring long-term storage.

Rules for storing dried fish

Dry weather is suitable for drying, temperature 18-25 degrees, place in the shade. The carcasses are dried in the fresh air, the fat is evenly distributed, and the color changes. The fillet contains useful microelements. Storage methods for dried and dried fish are no different.

Suitable workpiece quality:

  • Small size, medium hardness.
  • Dried whole or in slices lengthwise or crosswise.
  • Small specimens are salted, dried, the insides are preserved, and the fat soaks into the meat to improve the taste.

In winter and spring, carcasses are filled with fat, have a pleasant taste, and preparations are better at this time of year. In summer, flies lay larvae in carcasses. The vegetation in the fish's stomach rots, a bitter taste and a rotten smell appear. In large specimens up to 2 kg, the intestines and gills are cut out at any time of the year. Gutted fish are washed and prepared according to recipes. A concentrated solution is prepared for soaking.

Salting methods:

  • Lightly salted up to 10%.
  • Average from 10 to 14%.
  • Strong more than 14% salt.

Previously, only lightly salted delicacies were prepared with this seasoning.


  • Use cool water, tea leaves, and milk.
  • Liquid temperature – 12-15 degrees.
  • Light salting is used for horse mackerel, mackerel or fatty herring; soaking is not carried out before use.

Features of dry salting:

  • Coarse salt is dried in the oven.
  • Pour into a container and alternate layers with fish.
  • The load presses on the entire area, air escapes, without this microbes breed.
  • A wooden, ceramic, or metal flat circle is placed under the load. Glued plywood is not suitable; when wet, chemicals come out of it and saturate the carcass.

Dried fish can be stored at home from 3-4 days to 1 year, the method of preparation affects the period. If you break the rules, the products will deteriorate and become unfit for consumption, and people risk getting poisoned. The preparation is carried out taking into account the following conditions:

  • Low temperature is ensured.
  • Fresh indoor air.
  • Sun protection.
  • The humidity level should not exceed 70-80%.

The fish is well salted and dried; if signs of decomposition are visible, a bad smell is felt, thin worms or mold appear, the workpiece is immediately thrown away. It is not advisable to store large volumes in domestic conditions. You won't be able to eat much anyway, the smell spreads throughout the room.

It is dark and cool on the balcony, basement, storage room or barn. A suitable microclimate is created in these rooms.


  • The fish is collected in a bunch.
  • It dries out a little.
  • Wrapped in parchment paper.
  • Large individuals are packed separately, and small ones - 2-3 copies.
  • Suitable humidity up to 80%.
  • Freshness is extended up to 3 months.
  • Stored in the refrigerator for six months.

The taste lasts for a long time in the freezer; the fish is divided into several portions so as not to take it all out at once.

Glass jars are doused with boiling water and steam, a small candle is placed inside, and the lid is rolled up. When the flame burns out completely, all the oxygen will disappear, carbon dioxide prevents the ram from going rotten for 1 year. Bundles of fish are wrapped in parchment paper and stored in wooden boxes in the basement away from light for 8 months. You cannot put dried or cured fish in polyethylene; the microclimate in the bags changes, mold appears, and the seal is broken.


The conditions for storing dried fish are, in general, simple; all that remains is to choose the appropriate method. There are several options.

Shed or crawl space

Specially equipped premises, treated with anti-mold and pest control agents, are ideal for storing not only dried fish, but also other supplies, such as canned vegetables or fruit and berry preparations. To prevent the fish from drying out, they are wrapped in clean paper (not newspaper!) one at a time if they are large, or several small fish at a time.

Such packages can be hung on wire hooks or strung on a string. At the temperature and humidity indicated above, dried fish can be stored in this form for four to six months, but before eating it, it is still worth carrying out a visual inspection.

A wooden box or basket is also suitable for storing fish in an underground or closet. The container should be wrapped and covered with paper or double gauze. You can wrap the fish in paper, as described above, or you can simply alternate paper and fish layers, filling the container.

It is important that the room is ventilated, this will avoid the appearance of mold and musty smell. Under such conditions, a small amount of fish supplies will be preserved even in a simple linen bag.

When you have neither a shed nor a closet at your disposal, how to store dried fish at home? For example, is it possible to hang fish garlands on the balcony? For a long time - unlikely. The temperature and humidity outside the window are unstable, and it is also too light there.

Of course, you can use wrapping paper again, but you should leave the dried catch on the balcony only in the cool season, when the temperature does not rise above 10˚C. Otherwise, the shelf life of the fish is reduced to a month. Of course, the balcony must be glazed.

Dried fish is not the same as dried fish, although they are often confused, and is considered a semi-finished product.

Storing fresh fish in the freezer

If you have to store the fish for more than 2 days, it is better to freeze it, first wrapping it in a regular plastic bag. If fresh fish is subjected to the freezing process, then it does not need to be cleaned before, which will save housewives from processing the entire catch at one time. How long can frozen fish be stored in the refrigerator? It is better not to store frozen fish in the freezer for more than 2 months, however, certain types of fish (fattier) can be stored normally for 6 to 12 months.

It is better not to store meat and fish fillets near frozen unpeeled fish. Also, dairy products should not be near the fish, as they can absorb the fishy smell. This is especially true for storage in a refrigerator rather than a freezer.

To ensure that frozen fish does not lose its taste, it must be properly defrosted before cooking. It is better to do this in the refrigerator so that the fish defrosts on its own. This process is quite lengthy, so many housewives try to speed it up by taking the fish out of the refrigerator and adding warm water to it. Experienced cooks are categorically against such forced defrosting, since ready-made dishes will no longer be as tasty and healthy as after using fresh fish.

Video about how and how long you can store fish in the refrigerator

Is it possible to store defrosted fish in the refrigerator? After the fish is defrosted, it must be cooked immediately. You should not keep it in the refrigerator for more than one day, otherwise there is a risk of greatly spoiling the taste of the future dish. In order not to ask the question of how long you can store defrosted fish in the refrigerator, you need to think about when to start the defrosting process and what will be prepared from it. So, for example, you can use half-thawed fish to prepare soup. If the fish will be cooked in a frying pan or in the oven, then it must be completely defrosted and used immediately.

How long does smoked fish last?

How long can smoked fish be stored in the refrigerator? If the fish has been cold smoked, it can be stored in the refrigerator for no more than 10 days. At the same time, it must be stored, first wrapped in paper. Hot smoked fish should be stored in the refrigerator for no more than 3 days. This difference in timing is due to the fact that during cold smoking, fish meat is saturated with salt to a greater extent. In addition, during cold smoking, fish undergoes longer heat treatment.

If you smoked fish at home, but you can’t eat it all, you can freeze it. In such conditions, the meat will last for about 3 months. If you don’t want to freeze it, you can do the following: wrap the smoked fish in a cloth soaked in salt and put it in a safe place. At a temperature no higher than 3 degrees Celsius, wrapped smoked fish can safely lie for about a month.

If we are talking about smoked fish balyk, then it can be stored in the refrigerator for no more than 7 days. If the balyk is cut into pieces, then you will need to eat them after 3 days. During such storage, it is necessary to monitor the smell and ensure that mold does not appear on the fish.

How to store ready-made fish dishes?

How long can fish be stored in the refrigerator after it has been cooked? After the fish has been heat-treated, it can be stored for a certain time under normal room conditions. Everyone knows that cooked fish needs to be cooled after the oven or frying pan. That is why it is customary to put such dishes on the table. If it is not eaten within 2-3 hours, then it cannot be left further in warm conditions. After the specified time has passed, the fish must be placed in the refrigerator. How long can you keep fried fish in the refrigerator? Cooked fish, including fried fish, should be stored in the refrigerator for no more than 2 days.

If we are talking about how long to store sushi and rolls in the refrigerator and other similar fish dishes with rice, then it is best to use special sushi cases. Under normal refrigerator conditions, sushi should be stored for no more than a day. If after this there are leftovers, then it is better to throw them away without the slightest regret.

How to store dried and dried fish?

Fans of dried foods often wonder: how long can dried fish be stored in the refrigerator? The good news is that it can be stored for quite a long time, since salt in this case will play the role of a preservative. And if dried roach, ram, perch, sabrefish, bream, roach and other types of fish are well dried, then they can be stored for a whole year. For this purpose, the fish should be wrapped in high-density wrapping paper and kept in a dark and dry place.

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It is known that in the past, dried fish was often stored in newspapers, which is absolutely forbidden to do, since printing inks contain a fairly large amount of lead. Nowadays there are safer storage methods. For example, you can take parchment, a glass or tin jar with lids, craft paper, etc. In addition, dried and dried fish are stored in linen bags, wicker baskets and even in ordinary cardboard boxes. If the fish is to be stored in a hot climate, then it is best to place it in the freezer.

How to store salted fish?

Many housewives love to cook or serve salted fish. You can cook this fish yourself or buy it at any fish store. On the shelves you can find a wide variety of varieties of similar fish. You must understand that if the fish is stored in brine, its shelf life increases greatly. The length of storage will depend on the amount of salt that was used in the preparation of such foods.

So, how long can salted fish be stored, depending on the type, at a temperature of 0 to 3 degrees Celsius:

  • Lightly salted salmon, classic home salting - from 2 to 3 days.
  • Herring in brine – from 15 to 30 days.
  • Salmon in vacuum packaging – 30 days.
  • Fatty mackerel – about 10 days.
  • Any heavily salted fish can be stored without freezing for about 30 days.
  • Marinated and medium-salted fish – about 15 days.
  • Lightly salted fish can be stored for no more than 6 days.
  • Pieces of salmon, herring, and salmon can be stored in the refrigerator for about 3 months if they are pre-filled with vegetable oil.

Storing minced fish

Fans of fish cutlets and other similar dishes are interested in the question: how long can minced fish be stored in the refrigerator? After preparing or purchasing minced meat, you can safely store it in the refrigerator for 6 hours in a row. If minced meat was purchased or prepared for future use, it must be frozen. Minced fish will keep quietly in the freezer for about 3 months. If you bought very chilled minced meat, then without opening the packaging, it can be stored in the refrigerator for about a day.

And finally, before purchasing any type of fish, you should pay special attention to its freshness. A fresh product will never have any foreign odors. If you have even the slightest doubt about the quality and freshness of the fish, it is better to pass it by and look for a better, albeit more expensive, option.

Do you adhere to the rules for storing fish, and do you have your own storage secrets? Tell us about it in the comments.

If you smoked fish at home, but you can’t eat it all, you can freeze it. In such conditions, the meat will last for about 3 months. If you don’t want to freeze it, you can do the following: wrap the smoked fish in a cloth soaked in salt and put it in a safe place. At a temperature no higher than 3 degrees Celsius, wrapped smoked fish can safely lie for about a month.

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