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How to tell if mushrooms are bad?

I know how it goes, you look in the back of your fridge and you notice that there is a container of mushrooms that you forgot that you bought at the grocery store.

And now your wondering how to tell if the mushrooms are bad for cooking seeing that they have been in the fridge for about a week.

Lets cover the top 3 ways to tell if the mushrooms are still good for consumption.

Top 3 ways to tell if mushrooms have gone bad

The best way to tell is to use our sense to make a decision if they are bad or not. We are going to take a look at them and give them the old sniff test. Now if they are bad here are some mushroom substitutes.

1. Do the mushrooms smell

The easiest way to tell if the your mushrooms have gone bad is if they are smelly. Now it is hard to describe the smell but you will know it if you smell it.

Trust me you will say to yourself… yep these are no good!

You want have an earthy smell to them. To be honest they should smell kind of like dirt lol. Or that smell you get as you walk through a forest.

If they don’t smell and they look pretty good you might consider freezing your mushrooms before they go bad.

2. The mushrooms are slimy

When a mushrooms has gone slimy this is a good sign that they are going bad.

They should not look wet at all. Mushrooms love moisture as they will suck them up. You want them too look crisp and fresh!

Usually at this point you will have already experienced that they have a bad smell.

3. Are they bruised and soft

When the mushrooms are getting bruised they typically in the first stages of going bad.

This means that it is time to use them before they hit the other stages of smelly and slimy.

Typically this is very easy to notice on white button mushrooms seeing that you can really see the difference in color.

If your mushrooms are good and you want to know how to cook them, check out my post on how to sauté mushrooms and onions.

How to prevent mushrooms from going bad

  • Store them quickly. Store the mushrooms in the refrigerator as soon as you can from purchasing them from the market or grocery store. You want to keep them cold.
  • Store them in a container that can breath. Typically they come in a container that has air holes in the plastic wrap on the container. Don’t put them in an air tight container when you get them home.
  • Use them quickly. Like all produce its a good idea to get them cooked as soon as you can. It is typically best to shop for your produce a couple times of week.

How to choose fresh mushrooms at the grocery store?

This comes down again to using your senses. You want to make sure they don’t smell and that they are not bruised or look slimy.

For me personally I look for the packages of mushrooms with the date the closet to the current date. They typically mark them when they put them on the shelf.

If im buying organic mushrooms I am looking for the best date possible!

My favorite of all the mushrooms has to be the cremini mushroom. It has great flavor and is the close cousin to the white button mushroom. Most people think of it as the baby bella.

So in the end use your best judgment. I do not know at what stage that the mushroom could make you sick after it has gone bad. Give it a touch and sniff and look it over closely!

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