How long do meal prepped smoothies last?


Smoothies make for a quick, nutritious breakfast or snack. Many health-conscious people like to prep smoothies in advance to have on hand throughout the busy work week. But how long do prepped smoothies last in the fridge before they go bad? The shelf life depends on a variety of factors.

How Long Do Smoothies Last in the Fridge?

In general, smoothies stored in the refrigerator should last 3-5 days. The USDA recommends drinking refrigerated smoothies within 3-4 days for best quality. After that, the risk of spoilage increases. Here are some general guidelines for smoothie fridge life:

– Fruit/veg smoothies with no dairy: 3-5 days
– Dairy-based smoothies (yogurt, milk, cheese): 3-4 days
– Green smoothies with leafy greens: 2-3 days
– Added protein powder: 3-4 days
– Added fresh juice: 1-2 days

Smoothies with dairy and leafy greens tend to spoil faster. The proteins and fibers in dairy and greens are more perishable. Fruit and veggie smoothies without dairy often last a bit longer in the fridge. Added proteins and fresh juices shorten the shelf life as well.

How to Tell if Smoothies Are Bad

Watch for these signs that prepped smoothies have gone bad:

– Sour or funky smell
– Change in texture (becomes very thick and lumpy)
– Mold growth (blue, green, white fuzz)
– Weird colors (pink, orange, brown)
– Fizzing or bubbling when you open the container

If you notice any of these warning signs, it’s best to throw out the smoothie. Don’t taste or drink spoiled smoothies, as they can cause food poisoning.

Factors That Affect Smoothie Shelf Life

Several factors influence how long smoothies last in the refrigerator:


Fruits, vegetables, leafy greens, dairy products, and fresh juices all have varying shelf lives. Berries, citrus fruits, carrots, and apples tend to last longer. Delicate greens, yogurt, and fresh juices expire faster.


Acidic ingredients like citrus juices help prevent bacterial growth, extending the fridge life. Non-acidic smoothies made with milk or water instead of fruit juice tend to spoil faster.


Thoroughly blending smoothies pulverizes ingredients, releasing enzymes that accelerate spoilage. Lightly blending keeps more structure intact, slowing enzymatic browning.

Storage Container

An airtight container with a tight seal prevents contamination, moisture loss, and texture changes better than a loose lid. Glass and BPA-free plastic work best.

Refrigerator Temperature

Storing smoothies at a consistent 40°F or below maximizes freshness. The warmer the fridge, the faster smoothies deteriorate. Keep your fridge around 37°F.

Tips to Extend Smoothie Shelf Life

Here are some helpful tips to extend the refrigerator life of prepped smoothies:

– Store in airtight containers, leaving 1-inch headspace. Minimal air exposure slows oxidation.

– Add acidic juices like lemon, lime, orange or pineapple. The acidity inhibits bacterial growth.

– Keep smoothie ingredients chilled before blending. Don’t let produce sit at room temp.

– Drink soon after blending for maximum freshness. Waiting days allows more deterioration.

– Add ice cubes. The chilling effect helps smoothies stay fresher longer.

– Freeze excess smoothies in individual portions to thaw later in the week.

Can You Freeze Prepped Smoothies?

Freezing is a great way to preserve smoothies for longer storage. Most smoothie ingredients freeze well for 2-3 months with minimal texture or flavor changes. Here are some freezing tips:

– Leave 1-inch headspace in containers, as liquids expand when frozen.

– Glass jars or BPA-free plastic containers work best. Use freezer-safe lids.

– Let smoothies cool completely before freezing. Don’t freeze freshly blended warm smoothies.

– Stir before freezing to distribute ingredients evenly.

– Label smoothies with contents and date before freezing.

– Thaw overnight in the refrigerator or for a few hours at room temp before drinking.

– Add a bit more liquid after thawing, as smoothies thicken slightly.

– Freeze bananas whole or in chunks rather than blending them in. Bananas turn brown and alter texture.

Signs Your Frozen Smoothies Went Bad

Frozen smoothies can last 2-3 months in the freezer before declining in quality. Here’s how to tell if frozen smoothies have gone bad:

– Ice crystals or freezer burn spots on the surface, indicating moisture loss

– Separation of liquids and solids once thawed

– Off odors when container is opened, even while frozen

– Mold growth – toss immediately if you see this!

– Unnatural colors – greens turning brown, yellow changing to orange

– Soft, mushy texture after thawing – should still be thick and spoonable

Should You Refreeze Thawed Smoothies?

It’s not recommended to refreeze thawed smoothies. Refreezing smoothies that have been sitting thawed in the refrigerator can lead to higher bacteria growth. The texture also deteriorates more with each freeze-thaw cycle. Drink thawed smoothies within 2-3 days and make a fresh batch to freeze again.

Safe Smoothie Storage Summary

Follow these smoothie storage guidelines:

Storage Method Smoothie Shelf Life
Refrigerator 3-5 days
Freezer 2-3 months
Thawed from frozen 2-3 days

Proper storage helps smoothies retain optimum freshness, texture, color and nutrients. Use frozen smoothies within a few months and refrigerated smoothies within 3-5 days for best quality. Discard any smoothies with off odors, appearance or slimy texture. Following these simple storage rules helps you safely enjoy delicious smoothies all week long.


Meal prepped smoothies can last 3-5 days when properly stored in the refrigerator. Frozen smoothies keep for 2-3 months in the freezer. Acidity, ingredients, blending, storage containers and fridge temperature all affect smoothie shelf life. Signs of spoiled smoothies include foul smells, lumpy texture, mold, discoloration and fizzing. Freezing, airtight containers and acidic ingredients help maximize freshness. Drink refrigerated smoothies within 3-5 days and thawed frozen smoothies within 2-3 days for safety and quality. Following proper storage guidelines lets you enjoy fresh, healthy smoothies anytime.

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