Ground beef is a functional meat that may be a staple item in countless people’s diets. Yet it is most likely to go bad faster than various other cuts that meat, which can ruin the taste and make world sick. People should salary close fist to the color, texture, smell, and expiration day of floor beef.

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Ground beef is a well-known food in the united States. Research approximates that approximately 62% of every beef marketed in the U.S. Is ground. But the procedure of grind meat exposes a bigger surface area of ground beef to possibly harmful bacteria. This method it is most likely to go bad faster than various other cuts the beef.

Two instances of bacteria the may impact ground beef room spoilage bacteria and also pathogenic bacteria. Spoilage bacteria space not typically harmful, but will reason food to lose quality. This may reason unpleasant odors or taste. Pathogenic bacteria are an ext dangerous. They may contaminate food and also cause a foodborne illness, i m sorry can result in food poisoning.

In this article, us will comment on signs to look out for come tell if ground beef is bad and administer tips on just how to safe handle and store ground beef.

How to tell if soil beef is bad

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Consuming spoiled or undercooked beef have the right to make world feel sick, so individuals should shot to store, handle, and also prepare beef for sure to protect against them from getting ill. There space signs world can be mindful of that might warn them that ground beef is currently bad.


One quick means to recognize if floor beef has spoiled or is good to eat is through looking in ~ the color of the meat. Good quality, unspoiled soil beef bought native the supermarket must be bright red ~ above the outside.

This is because of oxygen native the air reacting with meat pigments called oxymyoglobin to kind a bright red shade on the surface of the meat. Oxymyoglobin is commonly the red liquid the leaks out of meat that many human being may mistake because that blood.

The inside of the meat will likely not have reacted through oxygen, so may be grayish brown in color, but is still perfectly fine come eat.

But if the soil beef is gray or brown on the external surface the the meat, civilization should discard it. This discoloration suggests that it has actually started to walk bad.

If a human notices mold on the surface of their ground beef, they have to throw it away immediately, whether it it is in raw or cooked.


People can additionally check the structure to watch if meat is bad. Soil beef the is fine to consume should have actually a relatively firm consistency that breaks apart once a human being squeezes it.

But a sticky or slimy texture may indicate the existence of spoilage bacteria. This may be the result of ropy slime-forming bacteria. This bacteria can release volatile compounds that may cause slime to type on the surface of the meat.

To avoid potentially spreading bacteria, it is advisable for world to completely wash their hands after taking care of raw meat.


Another method to call if ground beef has gone poor is by just smelling it. Normal, safe, fresh ground beef should not have actually a noticeable or uncomfortable smell. Multiplying spoilage bacteria can cause a strong odor to occur.

But the is crucial to remember the pathogenic bacteria might not cause a bad smell. So if there is not a negative scent however the ground beef is displaying other indications that it has gone bad, the is still advisable to discard the meat.

Expiration date

The Food and also Drug administration (FDA) execute not need there it is in an expiration date label on any kind of food assets except infant formula. But because there room localized rules neighboring these dates, most food commodities do often tend to have actually a date on them.

While many assets may attribute a “best before” label, the FDA want to dispel confusion and also instead usage the ax “best if used by.” brand such as “best before” simply refer to how long the product is most likely to keep its quality and flavor, not safety.

As lengthy as a person correctly and also safely stores your meat, they perform not necessarily should discard any products previous their “best before” date. That is safe for human being to consume refrigerated floor beef approximately 2 days previous this date. If freezing, it is advisable to eat soil beef within 4 months.

Click below to learn an ext about freezing and storing meat.

But if a person has actually not properly or safely stored meat, it is no advisable come eat it beyond the “best before” date. If a person has stored the meat at too high a temperature, or the packaging is torn or leaking, that is feasible that bacteria has actually contaminated the soil beef.

People have to be cautious if they suspect that ground beef may be bad. By consuming perhaps spoiled meat, world run the threat of occurring food poisoning.

Symptoms the food poisoning may include:

abdominal crampsnauseaupset stomachvomiting

Outbreaks the food poisoning attached to floor beef are fairly common in the U.S.

Bacteria that may reason these outbreaks encompass Salmonella, Escherichia coli (E. Coli), or Campylobacter. While plenty of infections resulting from these bacteria deserve to be mild, in some cases they deserve to be life threatening.

In bespeak to stop foodborne illnesses, human being should monitor the four guidelines laid the end by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and also Inspection Service:

Clean: to wash hands thoroughly and surfaces frequently.Separate: save raw meat except other foods items when cooking and storing.Cook: for sure that world cook all foods items thoroughly at the correct temperature, because that the exactly amount the time.Chill: Refrigerate or freeze food promptly and also at the appropriate temperature.

People must ensure the their refrigerator and also freezer room the exactly temperature to save their food safe. The refrigerator must be at or below 40°F (4°C) and also the freezer at or listed below 0°F (-17°C).

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It is safe to keep ground beef in the refrigerator because that 1–2 days, and eat leftovers in ~ 4 days. A person deserve to store soil beef in the freezer for as much as 4 months.

When food preparation ground beef, the minimum interior temperature as measured through a food thermometer is 160°F (71°C). The is necessary that a person never leaves ground beef out at room temperature for much more than 2 hours, together this can cause harmful bacteria to grow.