Nutrient-rich and boasting an earthy, buttery taste, Brie cheese is a popular choice among soft cheeses. It is a great companion to many food groups, with a creamy texture and strong aroma, and can be found on many charcuterie and cheese boards.
But, like other soft cheeses, Brie can be more susceptible to going bad.
Here’s the deal:
What Is Brie Cheese?
Brie cheese is named for its place of origin, a region of France. It is produced from whole milk,
Brie cheese possesses a pale color with a gray tint, and its rind can be consumed. Its flavor is richest when the cheese has ripened.
The flavor of Brie is rich and buttery, and its consistency is very soft, sometimes even runny. These components make it an excellent pair to varieties of food, though it is often paired with sweeter items like honey, chocolates, and fruits.
Has Your Brie Gone Bad?
When considering which cheese will go bad, there is a good rule to consider. The softer the cheese, the quicker it will go bad.
One of the appeals of Brie is that it is soft, but this also means it will go bad within a few weeks of being cut into, even if properly stored in a refrigerator. If you are unsure of whether your Brie is bad, proceed cautiously.
Rinds of cheeses will often produce a moldy exterior, so knowing whether or not the mold is bad can be the difference between a delightful treat and a bad stomach ache.
The rind of your Brie should maintain a white, powdery exterior. Spoilage is likely if the rind displays a flaky, gray exterior.
The smell of the cheese can also provide hints of whether or not the Brie has gone bad. If the interior smells creamy and earthy, it is likely fine to eat.
Even if the rind is giving you hints of ammonia, this does not necessarily mean spoilage has occurred. However, if the whole of the cheese gives off a strong ammonia smell, it is likely best to dispose of the cheese instead.
Instincts can give you insights, so trust your senses. If its smell is too strong, you may want to give it a toss.
Storage Methods: Preserving Brie Cheese
Cheeses that have not yet been cut – whole cheeses – need to breathe to prevent excessive molding. To best preserve whole Brie cheese, they should be wrapped tightly in parchment paper.
If you have indulged in a bit of Brie and have already pre-cut wedges, they should be wrapped tightly in plastic. This method of wrapping in plastic and refrigerating will allow Brie slices to be stored for several days.
After wrapping, the Brie should be kept in an area of your refrigerator where the moisture and temperature maintain consistency, usually in the back of the fridge or in a specific cheese drawer.
If you know it will be more than a week before your Brie will be consumed, freezing is an option for prolonging the life of Brie. Freezing should not be a long-term option, however, as the consistency of the Brie will change.
Indulging After Preserving
If you have stored pre-cut slices of Brie cheese, you should bring the slices to room temperature before indulging or serving to experience the best flavors.
If you prolong the life of your Brie by freezing it, it is best to use these cheeses in something that will be baked or cooked. Fortunately, quiches, grilled cheeses, and more are excellent with Brie!
Looking for an easy option for cooking your Brie? Try pairing with dates and warming.
How Long You Can Expect Brie To Last
As long as your Brie is unopened, your best bet is to go by the date you’ll find on the package. This will likely be around 4-6 weeks.
However, provided you’ve stored your Brie well – scroll up if you missed that – you can be pretty confident your Brie will last a week or so after that date.
For opened Brie, you can expect it to last 1-2 weeks in the refrigerator.
As for freezing Brie, keep that to a maximum of 3 months!
Benefits Of Brie
There is a reason Brie is one of the most popular soft cheeses. Brie cheese has numerous health benefits aside from being a tasty treat.
- Brie is high in nutrient-rich fat.
- It contains numerous vitamins and minerals.
- One ounce of Brie only contains 100 calories.
- Brie offers almost as much protein as a medium-sized egg.
- It is a good source of riboflavin and vitamin B12.
Each of these benefits, paired with the great taste of Brie, make it an incredibly popular choice at the cheese counter.
- Brie cheese is an excellent companion to many food groups and is popular for its rich taste.
- It attains its best flavor at room temperature.
- Whole Brie should be kept wrapped tightly in parchment paper.
- Sliced Brie should be wrapped tightly in plastic and refrigerated, but only for a week or two.
- The life of Brie can be prolonged by freezing, but ensure frozen Brie is baked or cooked, as its texture will change.
- In addition to its great taste, Brie is nutrient-rich and has numerous health benefits.