Food - Drink
Can Putting Softened Butter Back Into The Refrigerator Make You Sick?
By MATTHEW SPINA
Whether it’s okay to store butter at room temperature or not is a timeless kitchen debate: some cooks wouldn’t dream of it, while others don’t know any other way. However, if you soften some butter at room temp just for a recipe, but don't end up using all of it, you may wonder if you can put the butter back in the fridge.
If butter is left out on the counter for a few hours or even a whole day, whether accidentally or on purpose, it’s safe to put back in the fridge and enjoy it later. However, if the butter has been out of the fridge for more than two days, it may end up rancid, smelly, or just plain unsafe, and will need to be thrown away.
This two-day time period isn’t exact, however, since salted butter will last longer on the counter than unsalted. Additionally, room temperature butter that’s kept out of the way of air and light exposure may have a slightly extended shelf life, though it’s best to stick to the two-day principle if you’re ever unsure.