How to Tell if Your Meat Has Gone Bad
Meat is a proteinous food that is necessary for a balanced diet. However, spoiled meat does not build the body tissues as good meat should. Instead, it leads to stomach cramps, vomiting, loss of appetite, and diarrhea. Thus, you should know how to tell if meat is bad.
Eating bad meat can make you sick and leave you in the hospital. How, then, can you prevent yourself from eating bad meat? Recognize your meat and know the signs to know when it is bad or good to eat.
The different kinds of meats, such as poultry, seafood, and red meat, have different spoilage signs, so you need to be on the lookout for spoiled food to avoid food poisoning while handling and eating meat. Don’t overthink it. This article will help you to be able to identify and determine if your meat is bad or not.
3 Ways to Tell If Your Meat Has Gone Bad
Ever opened the fridge, ready to cook dinner, only to find out your meat has gone bad? It’s frustrating, not to mention a huge waste of food and money. But how do you even know if it’s gone off in the first place?
Following some quick checks can help you determine if your meat is still good or spoilt – keep reading as we take you through three top tips for sniffing out spoiled food!
Your meat has surely gone bad if you perceive any foul smell. Unlike red meat, fresh meat has no smell and can have a faint metallic or bloody odor.
Spoiled red meat has pungent ammonia, a strong odor, or a sour scent. Make sure you check your meat simply by cupping your hand near the meat and raising your hand close to your nose to perceive if it has a bad odor before cooking to eat.
It is easy to indicate through the texture whether the meat is still good or bad. Fresh and good meat is firm and has little moisture, while bad or spoiled meat is sticky, and when you feel it, it looks like it will slip out of your hand.
Your meat shouldn’t have a slimy film like fish caught directly from the ocean; this only means a multiplication of bacteria on the meat. Though in other cases, the spoiled steak might not be slimy. It could be very dry because it has lost its juice which occurs when the meat is being thawed.
It might not directly mean it is spoiled, but the dry texture indicates that the meat would be irritating to chew and have a low-quality taste.
Apart from smell and texture, the color of the meat is also a visible sign of spoilage. All bad or spoiled meat will change in appearance and look slimy and moldy, but each meat has a different color conversion.
For example, good and fresh chicken meat has a faint pink color, and when properly cooked, it turns white. But when it is a spoiled or bad chicken, the color becomes gray as it becomes more noticeable the longer it stays. It even gets accompanied by mold to confirm it has indeed gone bad.
How to Tell If Meat is Bad After Cooking
It is as simple as listed above. If your meat does not look fresh, smells bad, and has changed color, it is a major sign and a clear indication that it is spoiled or bad and must be thrown away.
How Long Can Chicken Be Left in the Fridge?
Chicken is a source of delicious and healthy protein. It is very important you store, prepare, and properly cook it because it has a high risk of bacteria contamination. Not cooked and stored well can be a source of foodborne illness.
The best and most convenient place to store chicken is your fridge, and in order not to eat spoiled meat, you need to be aware of how long you can store chicken in your fridge.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposes that you keep the raw chicken in the fridge for approximately one to two days. At the same time, you can keep cooked chicken for three to four days.
Bacteria grow slower in temperatures less than 40 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celcius), so storing chicken in the fridge helps bacteria grow slowly.
If you need to store the chicken for more than three to four days, keep it in the fridge or freezer. You can store a full raw chicken in the freezer for up to a year; its pieces can last for up to nine months, while cooked chicken can last in the freezer for about two to six months.
How Long Can Red Meat Be Left in the Fridge?
You can keep red meat in the fridge for up to 5 days, and it can especially last longer at the bottom because that is the coldest part. You must store red meat at a temperature of 40 degrees Fahrenheit and not above.
However, leftover cooked meat can last in the fridge for only about 3 to 4 days and stays much longer in the freezer.
Can You Make Red Meat Last Longer?
You can make red meat stay longer if you want. Heather Marold Thomason, a butcher, recommended it. “You should put meat in the freezer while it’s still fresh, so you still have a few ‘use by’ days left. You never can tell when you’ll bring it out, and it would be great to have a day or two afterward to thaw and cook the meat before it gets bad.”
Thomason continued, “To avoid wasting it if you want frozen meat at the last minute, put a label on it so you can be reminded to cook it as soon as it’s thawed.”
Red meat can stay longer in the freezer for four to twelve months. If there is any cooked leftover, you can keep it for about two to six months.
However, you should use meat in the freezer within a few months. This is because it will retain its integrity and quality when frozen for less time. That does not mean it can not last in the freezer for a year.
The effect of eating bad meat can be noticeable in your body and health within the first two days and can last up to a week If not well taken care of. To prevent poisoning yourself with bad meat, it’s important to know how to tell if meat is bad. Know what’s best for your health.