Where Should You Store Raw Fish in a Refrigerator – Complete Guide 2024

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You come home from the supermarket and go to unload your groceries. There’s a lot of food already in the refrigerator, so you haphazardly place food around other items.

And while this may seem like the easy solution, unfortunately, it can lead to a lot of good, expensive food, becoming spoiled. With just a bit of effort, you can properly store raw fish in a refrigerator.

When you get a piece of raw fish, it should come already wrapped. Don’t take it out of its wrapper as this will expose it to the air and potential bacteria.

Instead, leave it in its wrapping until you are ready to cook it. Also, even though it is wrapped tight, be sure to place a plate underneath, just in case anything does leak out of it.

Where should you store raw fish in a refrigerator? Raw fish, as well as other raw meat, needs to stay cold. The back part of the bottom shelf of your fridge is the best place. It is colder than the front by the door, and it is also the darkest area, and even a bit of light can spoil raw fish faster.

Finally, pay close attention to the best before date on your fish. While these dates can often act more as a guideline, raw fish can spoil quite quickly so you don’t want to take any chances and should be consumed within two days.

Where to store fish in the fridge?

Raw Fish

Raw fish should be placed on the bottom shelf of a refrigerator. Ideally, it should also be at the back of this shelf. Refrigerators lose a lot of their internal temperature when the door opens, so the back part will always be the coolest.

Keep your raw fish wrapped in its original packaging to prevent any unnecessary exposure to air. Also, place a plate under the packaging, just in case any juices from the meat seep out.

Cooked Fish

While cooked fish should be kept as cool as possible, if you don’t have any space at the back of your refrigerator, it will be ok at the front part of a shelf. Just make sure that your cooked fish is in an airtight container.

It’s important to label and date your container so that you know when the cooked fish was placed in the refrigerator. It has a shelf life of about three to four days, but again, don’t take any chances.

If your cooked fish has any white or green spots on it, or has a too-fishy smell to it, then it’s best not to consume it.

Marinated Fish

If you decide on marinating your fish in advance, you need to store it in the refrigerator. Make sure the marinated fish is either in a Ziploc container or in a glass container covered in plastic wrap.

How to store fish in the fridge

Raw Fish

If your fish comes from a grocery store and it is already in plastic wrap, be sure to leave it in this. Moving your fish from one container to the next exposes it to air, which can lead to bacteria growth.

If you have raw fish from a fishmonger and it is just wrapped in paper, be sure to transfer it to an airtight container.

Place the raw fish at the back of your fridge on the bottom shelf to keep it as cold as possible. If it is still in its original packaging, don’t place anything on top of it, just in case juices leak out, leading to cross-contamination.

Cooked Fish

If you have leftover cooked fish, the best way is to store it in your refrigerator. Place the cooked fish in an airtight container and label and date it.

Try to place cooked fish at the back of your fridge to keep it as cold as possible. When it is time to eat it, always check the color and smell in case it has spoiled.

Marinated Fish

Marinating fish is a great way to add extra flavor to it. However, due to the delicate nature of fish, it can only last up to 2 hours. In fact, really flaky fish can only be marinated for 30 minutes before it can start to fall apart.

Prepare your marinade and put your fish inside it. Ideally, everything should be in an airtight container, although a dish with plastic wrap will work, too.

Place the marinade inside your fridge, paying careful attention to the time.

How long does fish last in the fridge?


Generally, raw fish will only last two days in the fridge. While some fish will have a best buy date on its packaging, raw fish is less forgiving than other raw meat, so err on the side of caution.


Cooked fish can last in the fridge for three to four days. However, it needs to be properly packaged.

Cooked fish must be in an airtight container or else harmful bacteria can start to grow. Always label your container so you know how long it has been in the fridge for.

Furthermore, thoroughly check your cooked fish before consuming it. White or green spots are a sure sign of mold, and while your fish will smell like fish, it shouldn’t be too strong.


While other raw meat that is marinated can last up to five days, fish is a lot more delicate, and thus has a much shorter shelf life. Marinated fish can only last from 30 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the type of fish.

Whatever marinade or fish you use, however, it should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge.


Fish is an excellent, nutritious, and tasty meal but it is a sensitive, less forgiving type of meat.

While raw fish can be stored for two to three days in a refrigerator, it must be in an airtight container and ideally in a dark, cold area.

Furthermore, place a plate underneath to prevent any leaking and try not to let other food get too close to minimize the risk of cross-contamination.

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