Pork is one of the most popular meats available today. It’s lean, tasty, and versatile. Pork is commonly found in dishes such as bacon, ham, and pork chops.
Like any other type of meat, pork also needs to be refrigerated. But sometimes pork can get bad or spoiled before you know it.
It’s important to know how to tell if pork is bad so you don’t accidentally eat spoiled meat. Below are five signs that may indicate whether or not you should throw out your meat.
How to Tell if Pork Is Bad?
The first thing to check is its texture – if it’s slimy, don’t eat it. Changes in color or smell and dark spots are other signs you need to carefully look at and if you see anything off, avoid cooking it.
1. Slimy Texture
If your pork has a slimy texture, throw it out. Squeamish about the idea of slimy meat?
You can also use this trick: place the pork in front of a fan for several minutes and see if any slime forms on its surface. If it does, throw it out.
If the color of your pork has changed from its original shade, it’s a clue that your meat is spoiling. Fresh pork should not have an excessively bright color either – fresh meat has a pinkish-red tone with a hint of blue.
Duller colors may indicate spoilage. If you’ve stored your meat for a long period of time, the pork’s color may change from pink to gray.
In addition to a difference in color, spoiled pork will also have a different smell than non-spoiled meat.
Spoiled pork may develop a sour or acidic odor, while fresh meat should have a slightly fragrant aroma. If there is a distinct sour or yeasty smell, you should not risk eating spoiled pork.
Pork should not give off a strong odor. If it does, then there’s something wrong with it and you should throw it out.
A change in texture is another clue that your meat has gone bad. Spoiled pork will become soft and sticky, much like raw chicken, as opposed to fresh meat which remains firm.
When cooked, the flesh of spoiled pork will be soft and mushy, not firm and springy.
5. Black or Dark Spots
If your pork has black or dark spots, then it’s time to throw it out, especially if the meat was cooked at a high temperature. Dark spots may or may not appear while cooking, but if they are thereafter the meat is cooked, then throw it out.
Pork that has black or greenish areas should not be eaten as those colors indicate spoilage and bacteria growth. Throw the pork away and do not eat it.
How Long Does Pork Last?
Pork usually lasts for 3 to 5 days in the fridge. This is assuming that the meat was stored at 40° Fahrenheit or less. It may also be frozen and kept for several months, but make sure you do not refreeze it once thawed.
If you have leftover pork chops, make sure to read my other article where I’ve discussed different ways to tell if pork chops are bad.
How To Prevent Pork from Going Bad?
To prevent your pork from going bad, you should only buy the meat when it’s on sale and freeze it. Remember to store your pork in a tightly sealed container in order for it to stay fresh longer.
Additionally, keep it away from other types of food such as veggies or fruit that may smell strongly and cause your pork to develop a strong smell.
Remember not to store cooked pork in the same bowl in which it was cooked, as this increases the chances of cross-contamination and lessens its shelf life.
You should also place any remaining pork in a sealed container to keep it fresh for up to 3 days.
Thank you for reading this article about how to tell if pork has gone bad. The next time you go grocery shopping, remember to keep an eye out for these signs of spoilage to ensure that you’re buying fresh pork.
If you suspect your pork has gone bad, don’t take chances. When in doubt, throw it out.