Great, you’ve got some bacon. Full of fat, protein and sodium, bacon isn’t the healthiest, but it sure is a tasty salt-cured pork. But your pack of bacon has been opened, and you’ve found yourself wondering: does bacon go bad?
Here’s the deal: You probably already know that bacon goes bad. However, it stays good for an impressive period of time – its high salt content means it can last up to a week in the fridge after opening.
How To Tell If Bacon Has Gone Bad
Need some bacon and worried that the pack you’ve got has gone off? If you haven’t opened the pack yet, look for the use by date, and don’t eat after you’re past the date on the pack.
If you’ve already opened or discarded the pack, here’s how to tell if your bacon is off:
- Color. Has the red in your bacon started to dull? That means it’s starting to spoil, and it will soon start to turn a grey, green, brown or silvery color.
- Smell. Your bacon should smell fresh and meaty. If it starts smelling foul or unusual in any other way, your bacon is ready for the bin.
- Touch. Good bacon should be bouncy and soft to the touch. If you’re unsure whether your bacon is alright to eat or not, try touching it with a washed hand. If it feels slimy or sticky, it’s a sign that lactic acid bacteria is forming. Chuck your bacon if it’s slimy!
You might be wondering: what’s that yellowy, white tinge to my bacon? This is usually round the edges of your bacon, and it’s perfectly harmless. It’s caused by the rind of the bacon being exposed to smoke.
“Pork rind” is a term used for pork skin. It’s cooked in lots of different ways, including rendering, frying in fat, or roasting.
How To Store Bacon
To protect your bacon’s shelf-life once opened, make sure to store it properly. You can either put your bacon in an airtight freezer bag within a refrigerator, or you can put that same bag inside the freezer.
How Long Bacon Lasts
In a refrigerator, an unopened pack of bacon will last up to 2 weeks, as long as the bag or container it’s in is airtight.
In the freezer, your unopened bacon will last up to 8 months, so this is the ideal solution for long-term storage.
However, once your bacon has been opened, it will last only a week in the refrigerator and a few months tops in the freezer.
Remember. Check the storage advice and guidelines on how bacon lasts on your bacon packaging. This will give the most accurate information for your specific packet.
The Summary: How Long Bacon Lasts And How To Store It
Once open, bacon lasts about a week in the fridge, if you keep it in an airtight container. This is quite long for a meat product, due to its high salt content.
However, if you do find yourself caught out with a suspicious slice of bacon, you should check its smell, color, and feel to determine if it’s off.