The shelf life of uncured bacon, also known as fresh bacon, depends so many factors like the best by date, the preparation method, and how it is stored. How long does uncured bacon last? The answer to this question is in this article, so continue reading to find out.
The shelf life of uncured bacon is approximately 1 to 2 weeks, but if you freeze it in a plastic freezer bag, you can store it for up to 6 months. If you keep it in the fridge without wrapping, it will turn gelatinous. However, if you wrap the uncured bacon in foil, it will remain pliable until you’re ready to use it.
The length of time uncured bacon lasts on factors such as its exposure to heat or light, the temperature and humidity at which you store it, and whether you didn’t wrap it.
Uncured bacon has become more readily available since it is healthier than cured bacon. When properly refrigerated, it typically lasts for one to two weeks past the date on the package.
What is Uncured Bacon?
Uncured bacon has not been treated with chemicals, including nitrates, to preserve the meat’s color. Cooking without nitrates or nitrites allows it to keep its naturally lean, creamy texture.
Additionally, it is higher in protein and lowers in fat than traditional dry-cured bacon. It’s delicious as cured bacon, just that it’s without nitrates. It also tastes better than regular bacon because it’s not with a smoke flavor.
How long does uncured bacon last? – Its accurate shelf life
To gain the best quality and taste from uncured bacon, you should use it within three months, but if properly handled and stored in a refrigerator, it should last at least six months. This storage life will vary depending on the conditions you keep it in and the type of bacon you prefer.
You should freeze it as soon as possible after opening it and keep it indefinitely under refrigeration for best results. Like most meat, uncured meat can be safely stored in the refrigerator for up to 7 days after purchase.
To minimize the chances of foodborne illness, you should store it on the counter at room temperature or cooked before consumption.
Signs of a Spoiled Bacon
1. The Smell
Bacon that has spoiled will have a powerful, unpleasant smell. If it is not entirely rotten, you’ll probably be able to identify the spoiled bacon just by smelling it. At times, the smell of spoiled bacon is not apparent but will indeed have an off smell or odor.
Its high-fat content can spoil quickly if the meat’s surface is bruised and exposed to oxygen and bacteria.
2. The texture of the meat
To discover if it is spoiled, you must first touch the meat. A slimy texture indicates that this food is not fresh. It will get soft, the fat will get runny, and the meat will get grey. If you smell a rotten stench, then throw it away.
3. The Look
The appearance will change over time; this is normal. To know if your bacon has spoiled, cut it into a slice; if you see any thick white streaks or thick slimy areas, it’s time to toss it.
4. Change in Color
One way to tell if bacon is bad is if it changes color. Regular uncooked bacon will be pinkish, but after cooking, it becomes brown. If the bacon stays the same color after cooking, then this could be a sign of spoilage. As it spoils, it becomes brownish-red.
Difference Between Uncured and Cured Bacon
Cured bacon is created using a salt and sugar cure and then gets smoked and heated to create that yummy, crispy taste we all crave. Uncured slices come from the pork belly but never get subjected to any smoking or curing process.
It means that the meat is like a marinade as it is not preserved by being submerged in sodium nitrite. If you are health conscious, you will enjoy this tasty treat.
It is bacon without a solution of water and salt as it is from a naturally smoked pork loin. It does not contain artificial ingredients, additives, or hormones.
Cured bacon is bacon that is with salt, sugar, and spices. It’s then either dried or smoked. After this process, it has a pinkish color and smooth texture. Cured bacon will keep for extended periods, while regular bacon will spoil after being kept out of the refrigerator for 24 hours.
It is meatier, juicier, and more flavorful than typical bacon. It’s a piece of bacon you can slice extra thick and eat straight from the pack, cook up in a skillet or chop up and use as a seasoning or an ingredient. The possibilities are endless.
How to Store Bacon
Store it in any way you like as long as it is not exposed to direct sunlight and is kept cold. Condensation will form on it when you store it in the freezer, but this does not affect the quality of the bacon.
It’s a kind of food with a short shelf life, and this is because of the vegetable protein myosin or proteins in bacon, which oxidizes or turns rancid quickly when exposed to oxygen.
Storing cured bacon
Store bacon in the refrigerator for best results. Store in original wrapping to protect from moisture. When you store it in the freezer, it will last for up to 3 months. Refrigerate opened bacon no longer than one month after the date on the package, then freeze or use it right away.
Cured bacon must be refrigerated. It can be refrigerated in the package it came in or unwrapped and placed in a freezer-safe container or wrap. Wrap it tight, so there is minimal air around it.
Storing uncured bacon
Bacon-bought uncooked will need to be kept cool below 7C. If you are storing uncured bacon in the fridge, put it on a tray or tray lined with paper to avoid spills. For best results, wrap the bacon in cling film. This paper acts as a buffer between the fridge door and the bacon. It also prevents it from sticking to other foods in the fridge.
Storing uncured bacon is done best by storing them in the refrigerator. The refrigerator helps to slow down the growth of bacteria that cause the meat to go bad. Store it on a shelf or in a drawer away from other foods with an odor so the bacon will not absorb its flavors.
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How to Tell If Bacon Is Bad
Though properly stored, bacon can spoil a few days earlier than you might expect. It’s easy to determine whether a package of bacon is still good by checking for some obvious changes in color or aroma. Keeping bacon in the fridge means it will last longer.
However, if your bacon is slightly warmer than room temperature, you can still determine its freshness by inspecting for evidence of mold on the meat before eating. You can spot mold because it will be light or dark in color and look similar to wet, furry carpet or velour.
Although, this is not uncommon as bacon sometimes contains mold from the curing process. If there’s no trace of mold present, you’re good to go.
What to Do If You Eat Bad Bacon
Some of the signs that your bacon has gone bad are if it is foul, has a strange odor, or has a slimy look. If this seems to be the case with your bacon, you should throw out the bacon immediately.
But if you think you ate bad bacon and experiencing any of these symptoms within 3 days of eating the bad bacon like stomach cramps, diarrhea or vomiting, and fever, see a doctor right away.
How Long Does Unopened Turkey Bacon Last in the Fridge
Storage time for turkey bacon depends on various factors, such as preparation methods and whether the bacon has been previously frozen. However, generally, cooked and unopened turkey bacon will keep in the refrigerator for about one week, anywhere from three to seven days.
Also, Unopened bacon should be kept at 38-40°F and can be refrigerated indefinitely.
How Long Is Bacon Good for After Use by Date
Bacon is good for about a week after the date on the package but is still safe to eat after that period. If you smell spoilage or notice see anything questionable upon examining the bacon, you should throw it out.
Meanwhile, bacon is good for 10 weeks in the freezer, about 2 months in the refrigerator, and one week after opening the pack.
How Long Does Uncured Canadian Bacon Last
The shelf life of uncured Canadian bacon depends on various factors, such as the best-by date, whether or not it has been cooked, and how it is stored. However, the shelf life of cured Canadian Bacon is about 1 to 2 weeks for best quality when stored in a refrigerator.
Moreso, to maximize the shelf life of uncured Canadian bacon, stored in the refrigerator in its original package.
Can Uncured Bacon Go Bad?
Uncured bacon isn’t with nitrates. As a result of this, it may have a shorter shelf life than cured bacon. It doesn’t go bad because it contains no nitrites or nitrates; it simply requires refrigeration when stored for safety.
When you store it in the refrigerator at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below, uncured pork products will last for months and still taste great after that period.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you know when uncured bacon is bad?
The easiest way to determine the quality and freshness of uncured bacon is by checking the color. When cured properly, it should be a deep red, except for those labeled as “unsmoked.”
Does uncured bacon last as long as cured bacon?
Uncured bacon does have a shorter shelf life since it’s not with nitrates, but it can still last weeks in the refrigerator. It does not need additional refrigeration unless you open it, but once it’s opened, use it within four days. Since uncured bacon doesn’t need any preservation, it’s generally less expensive than cured bacon.
Can uncured bacon make you sick?
Uncured bacon can make you sick if you do not handle it properly when processed at a high temperature; the bacteria that cause botulism to grow in food can cause severe illness or death if eaten. Another potential danger from uncured bacon is the Clostridium botulinum toxin.
How long is uncured cooked bacon good for?
Uncured bacon is generally good for 3-7 days from the day you made it. If you plan to eat it the day after it should be cured or cooked, this will make it be at its peak. After that, it will still be good. You can keep cooked bacon chilled in the refrigerator for seven days.
Which is better, cured or uncured bacon?
Bacon, when appropriately cured, is a delicious meat that showcases the taste of pork. However, when uncured bacon is terrible, it can be soggy with an unpleasant mess. Cured bacon has been treated with a salt-based brine or added cure to preserve it. It is a more economical choice, yet not as flavorful as uncured bacon.
Making sure your uncured bacon lasts is a goal of every bacon-lover; it’s not difficult if you already know how long does uncured bacon last. Knowing how long food stays and how to prepare it correctly is an essential skill we will all need to learn at some point in our day-to-day cooking activities.