Kraft American Cheese is a pre-sliced cheese that can be used for sandwiches, melted in macaroni and cheese, or on a grilled cheese sandwich. It is one of the most popular cheese brands in the United States. Kraft American Cheese slices are packed in plastic wrap and sealed in a bag for freshness.
Many people consider this type of cheese a staple in their kitchens, and you can use it in all kinds of recipes. But you might have some leftover Kraft American Cheese, wondering how long it lasts in the fridge.
The shelf life of unopened Kraft American cheese depends on its storage conditions before consumers purchase. If stored properly in its original packaging at room temperature (75 F/23 C), unopened packages of Kraft American cheese have a shelf life of about two years from the production date.
Once opened, Kraft American cheese has a shelf life of one to two weeks under ideal conditions. However, this does not mean the cheese will spoil during this time.
The actual time may vary depending on how long it takes to consume the product after opening it and other factors such as storage conditions and how well the product was handled during preparation and consumption.
To get the longest shelf life for your cheese, store it in a tightly closed container. The cheese should last about four weeks after opening.
The shelf life of Kraft American Cheese depends on several factors, including the sell-by date, the preparation method, and how it is stored. So let’s take a look at some of these factors.
The sell-by date is stamped on each package, identifying the last day the cheese should be consumed for maximum freshness. The best way to store Kraft American Cheese is in its original packaging in the refrigerator.
If stored correctly in the refrigerator, Kraft American Cheese will stay fresh for two to three weeks after the sell-by date. If there are no signs of spoilage, such as mold or an off odor, then it should be safe to eat.
What Is The Best Way To Store Kraft Cheese?
If leftover cheese is in its original packaging, you can freeze it in an airtight container or freezer bag. If you want to keep your cheese fresh for longer than a few days, this is the best way. Just make sure you don’t put other foods in with it — the plastic will absorb odors from other foods and transfer them to your Kraft cheese!
You can also freeze Kraft cheese without packaging by laying slices flat on a baking sheet or plate and freezing them until solid, then storing them in an airtight container or freezer bag until ready for use. This method works well if you want to bake something with the cheese when needed but don’t need much at any given time.
Can You Freeze Packaged American Cheese?
Yes, you can freeze packaged American cheese. Freezing cheese is a good way to preserve it for long periods. You can freeze American cheese as is or slice and re-wrap it.
However, once the cheese is defrosted, it will not have the same texture or flavor as fresh cheese. You may also see some color changes when the cheese is thawed out.
Kraft Cheese has a “Best When Used By” date on the package. This is not an expiration date but rather the date Kraft recommends using the product for the best flavor or quality. The shelf life of cheese varies greatly depending on the type of cheese, how it is processed and packaged, storage methods, and temperature.
Unopened Natural Cheese lasts 1-2 weeks past this date, opened processed cheese lasts 6-8 weeks, and opened shredded, crumbled, or sliced natural cheese lasts one month beyond the printed date.
Homemade American Cheese
- Medium-sized saucepan
- Wooden spoon or heat-resistant spatula
- Small mold such as a loaf pan or plastic container
- Plastic wrap
- Cutting board or plate
- Knife for slicing the cheese
- 2 cups whole milk
- 2 cups shredded mild cheddar cheese
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
Preparing the Cheese Mixture
- In a medium-sized saucepan, heat the whole milk over medium heat until it is warm. Add the shredded mild cheddar cheese, unsalted butter, cornstarch, salt, and smoked paprika.
- Stir the mixture frequently until the cheese has melted completely and the mixture has become smooth and creamy.
Cooking the Cheese Mixture
- Once the cheese mixture has become smooth and creamy, cook it for an additional 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently.
- The cheese mixture should start to thicken and become stretchy, similar to the texture of store-bought American cheese.
Pouring the Cheese Mixture into a Mold
- After the cheese mixture has thickened, remove it from heat and pour it into a small mold. A loaf pan or small plastic container works well for this step.
- Allow the cheese to cool to room temperature before covering it with plastic wrap and placing it in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours.
Unmolding the Cheese
- Once the cheese has chilled in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, it is time to unmold it. Remove the plastic wrap from the mold and gently loosen the cheese from the sides of the container.
- Flip the mold over onto a cutting board or plate and gently tap the bottom to release the cheese.
Slicing and Serving
- Now that your homemade American cheese is ready, slice it to your desired thickness and use it as desired. It is perfect for sandwiches, burgers, or even on its own as a snack.
Kraft American cheese has a longer shelf life than many other cheese types. Unopened Kraft American cheese can last for up to six months in the refrigerator when stored properly. However, once opened, consuming the cheese within two weeks is recommended.
It is important to remember that the cheese’s quality may deteriorate over time, even if it is still safe to eat. To ensure the best quality and flavor, it is recommended to use Kraft American cheese within its recommended time frame.