How Long Can Uncrustables Sit Out? [Avoid Food Poisoning]

Uncrustables is a sandwich created by Smuckers that mimics the traditional peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with the crust cut off.

Your kids love them, so you picked them up at the grocery store.

You took one out to let it defrost, per the instructions and forgot it on the counter. How long can Uncrustables sit out before going bad?

Uncrustables can sit in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours after they have been thawed. Unrefrigerated uncrustables should be consumed within 6 to 8 hours.

According to food safety experts, salmonella can develop in peanut butter. In 2012 there was a recall of Uncrustables sold to a school due to a risk of salmonella.

What Happens If You Forget To Refrigerate Uncrustables?

According to the FDA, food that sits out longer than 2 hours moves into the Danger Zone area we mentioned earlier.

While other articles say they can sit out for eight hours, we recommend sticking to the 2-hour guideline, especially since you’re dealing with processed peanut butter. 

The 2-hour window begins when the Uncrustable is defrosted.

We also recommend letting Uncrustables thaw in the refrigerator instead of the counter. It may take longer, but it’s safer. 

According to Smuckers, Uncrustables should defrost on the counter for 30-minutes and should be eaten within 8 hours for the best flavor.

How Long Uncrustables Last In The Fridge?

A thawed Uncrustable will last in the fridge for one day or 24 hours.

If you defrosted too many, you could put them in a refrigerator in an airtight container, but they lose their flavor fast, so don’t let them sit in the fridge for more than a day. 

How Long To Keep Uncrustables In The Freezer?

Smuckers includes a “Best When Purchased By” date on the Uncrustable packaging. Uncrustable Sandwiches are good for one month after the date printed on the side of the box.

If your package of Uncrustable Sandwiches is passed that point, throw them away. 

Time Frame To Keep Uncrustables Out Of The Freezer

Uncrustables out of the freezer has 2 hours before they move into the Danger Zone we talked about earlier.

If they are moved from the freezer to the refrigerator, they will have a 24-hour shelf-life. Any longer, throw them away. 

Smuckers uncrustables

For best quality, keep your Uncrustables in the freezer and only defrost what you plan on eating.

How Long Can Uncrustables Stay Fresh?

Uncrustables will last for one month past the date on the side of the box. These sandwiches are mass-produced and lose flavor fast. If they go past that month, they won’t have the best taste.

Best Storage Practices

Room temperature is where foods begin to move into that dreaded Danger Zone the USDA warns. So, Uncrustables are included in this rule.

According to the directions from Smuckers, these PB&J sandwiches will defrost in 30-minutes at room temperature.

Then they’re ready to eat. We recommend eating them within 2 hours. 

If you don’t finish them, store the leftovers in an airtight container and keep them in the fridge.

The manufacturer says we should eat them within 8-hours to get the best flavor. But they also say they can last in the refrigerator for 24-hours. 

It seems, when it comes to Uncrustables, be sure to finish what you defrost sooner than later.

If you left it out longer than 2-hours, we recommend disposing of it, defrosting another when you’re hungry.

While wasting food is never good, peanut butter is risky, and we shouldn’t take foodborne illnesses lightly. 

How Long Can Uncrustables Be Left Out?

According to the USDA, all food, including Uncrustables, can only be left out for 2 hours. Otherwise, it moves into the Danger Zone.

Since peanut butter is one of their main ingredients, it’s even more essential to follow that 2-hour rule set by the experts. 


If you’ve left your Uncrustable sandwich out for longer than 2 hours, we suggest throwing it away.

Homemade Uncrustables Recipe

If you don’t want to fill yourself or your family with processed foods and preservatives, you can grab the whole wheat bread and your favorite fillings. If you have a nut allergy, there are alternatives. You can even opt for sugar-free jelly. 

Things you will need include bread, natural peanut butter (or allergy-safe alternative), grape jelly (or another flavor of your choice), a sandwich sealer or a fork, and a round cookie cutter.

Sealers are lovely because all you do is press and go. The cookie-cutter method requires sealing the edges with a fork, which is time-consuming.

If you foresee this becoming a regular thing in your home, invest in a sandwich sealer. You can find them pretty inexpensively. 

Directions if you have a sandwich sealer.

  • Lay down one piece of bread.
  • Put the second piece of bread over it. 
  • Use the sealer to cut out rounds. 
  • Spread your fillings in one round. 
  • Seal the second piece of bread over it with the sandwich sealer. 

Directions with a fork and cookie cutter. 

  • Stack two pieces of bread. 
  • Cut them with the cookie cutter.
  • Spread the fillings on one piece of bread
  • Seal the second round piece of bread over the filling around the edges by crimping it with a fork. 

Best Practices To Freeze Homemade Uncrustables

Put them in an airtight container and stick them in the freezer. They’ll last there for three months and defrost nicely in the fridge.

The best thing about homemade sandwiches is the fact that you know what’s gone into that lunch or PB&J breakfast food. 

When you make your lunches with real food, you can skip harmful ingredients like high fructose corn syrup, which has been entirely from mass-produced Uncrustables as well.

Your 18-pace of Smuckers Uncrustables hasn’t contained high fructose corn syrup since 2017. Smuckers and their retail partners have welcomed the change. 

Can You Defrost Uncrustables In The Microwave? 

Smuckers highly discourage consumers from defrosting Uncrustable sandwiches in the microwave.

The jelly heats up to a high heat that can be dangerous, so it’s best to follow the defrosting directions set by the manufacturer.

Smuckers says to let your sandwich sit out at room temperature for 30-minutes. 

But remember, the USDA warns us about letting food sit out for longer than 2-hours. Otherwise, it moves into the dreaded Danger Zone.

Unrefrigerated Uncrustables that have a moist spot might be a sealed specimen of dangerous bacteria. 

The scientific method works well in a laboratory with a control group. But your kitchen isn’t a lab, and you don’t want to risk foodborne illness. 

Varieties Of Uncrustable Sandwiches

While our favorite is PB&J, there are plenty of flavors that Smuckers keep frozen for your convenience.  A local store finder can help you find these flavors in your area. 

  • Turkey and Colby Jack
  • Uncured Ham & Cheddar
  • Uncured Pepperoni Roll-Ups
  • Uncured Pepperoni Bites
  • Taco Bites
  • BBQ Chicken Bites
  • Peanut Butter and Grape Jelly 
  • Peanut Butter and Grape Jelly on Whole Wheat
  • Peanut Butter and Strawberry Jam
  • Peanut Butter and Strawberry on Wheat with Reduced Sugar
  • Peanut Butter and Honey
  • Chocolate Flavored Hazelnut Spread

Possible Ingredients For Homemade Uncrustables

If you or your roommate is tired of the typical PB&J sandwich, and you want to make some freezable crust-free sandwiches in your kitchen.

Here are some alternative ingredients that you might enjoy. 


Peanut butter isn’t the only spread out there. Here is a list of nut butter and alternatives made without nuts.

If you or someone in your home has a nut allergy, please consult a doctor before using any kind of butter on our list. 

Nut Butter

  • Acorn butter
  • Almond butter
  • Cashew butter
  • Hazelnut butter
  • Macadamia nut butter
  • Pecan butter
  • Pistachio butter
  • Walnut butter

Not-Nut Butter

  • Pumpkin seed butter
  • Sesame seed butter (tahini)
  • Soybean butter (made from soynuts)
  • Sunflower seed butter
  • Hummus

Jams And Jellies

  • Apple jelly
  • Apple butter
  • Blackberry jam
  • Blueberry jelly
  • Pomegranate preserves
  • Dandelion jelly
  • Bacon jelly
  • Onion jelly
  • Hot pepper jelly
  • Peach jelly
  • Orange marmalade
  • Strawberry Jam
  • Tomato jam

Lunch Meats

  • Turkey
  • Ham
  • Fully cooked roast beef
  • Corned beef
  • Pastrami
  • Chicken breast sliced
  • Tuna fish salad
  • Pepperoni


  • Pepperjack
  • Cheddar
  • Swiss
  • Munster
  • American
  • Colby
  • Mozzarella
  • Provolone
  • Brick

Final Verdict

Frozen sandwiches are fantastic when we’re short on time and have hungry mouths to feed. If you prefer to make them yourself, follow our instructions above.

You can mix and match our ingredient suggestions but be sure to research how things freeze. And get a fun sandwich sealer!

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