One of the green, leafy vegetables that are super good for you is spinach. This nutrient-dense food is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, and so much more.
You’re ready to follow the doctor’s orders, but your spinach has been in the fridge for a while. Now you’re asking yourself: Has my spinach gone bad?
Here’s the verdict: if it has a darker color, if it’s soggy and slimy, or if it has an unpleasant smell, your spinach has most probably gone bad, now is the time to get rid of it.
Look Out For These Signs That Your Spinach Has Gone Bad
When it comes to any food, the way you store it is the number one way to get it to last as long as it can. If your spinach hasn’t been stored properly or is quite old, here are the signs that you should probably discard your spinach.
- If your spinach has become moldy or slimy, it’s the right time to throw it out.
- An unpleasant smell will also warn you that it should be thrown out.
- If some parts of the leaves wilt or turn yellow, you may want to discard those parts specifically. Or you can get rid of all the spinach. This one is up to you.
- Sometimes blackened edges or spots appear on the leaves, which are also a sign of spoilage.
Like other vegetables, you can just remove spoiled leaves from your bag of spinach. However, once more than half of your spinach is contaminated, you’re better off chucking the whole lot.
That’s because spinach has a high moisture content, so bacteria and mold can spread fast.
How To Store Spinach
The key to storing spinach is to keep it as dry as possible. Only wash your spinach once you are ready to use it. The reason for this is that added moisture will quicken the rate your spinach goes bad and slimy.
Remember: store your spinach in the fridge in an airtight plastic container to further keep out excess moisture and water. Plastic helps to reduce ethylene produced from other fruits and vegetables. This, in turn, fortunately, aids in retaining the quality of the spinach for longer.
Once you’ve cooked your spinach, store it as you would any other vegetable – in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
How Long Does Spinach Last?
Spinach is not a long-lasting vegetable. Therefore, it is important to store it properly to get all those great health benefits out of the leaves!
Fresh spinach can last up to 5-7 days, but store-bought spinach may last 3-5 days after its best-by date. That’s because store-bought spinach will already have been stored for a couple of days before purchase.
Depending on how you have stored your spinach – and how it has been stored before purchase – it may show signs of spoilage earlier, so it is best to always inspect the leaves before you use them in a dish.
In short: spinach may spoil quicker than you think, so look out for changes in texture, smell, and color.
The Bottom Line
Spinach has a short lifespan and stays fresh for about a week or 3-5 days after its best-by date. However, due to how easily perishable it is, you should inspect your spinach for any signs that it may have spoiled.
Now that you know how to store your spinach, you can enjoy it in a variety of ways. Spinach can be enjoyed on its way – cooked or raw. Or you can add it to salads, stir-fries, curries, and an array of dishes to add the health benefits it has.