Can you eat prawns 2 days after the use-by date?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “can you eat prawns 2 days after the use-by date” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not you can eat prawns that are past the use-by date. 

Can you eat prawns 2 days after the use-by date?

According to USDA, you should consume your prawns before the use-by date, and because there are high chances of shellfish poisoning associated with the consumption of the seafood that is laden with viruses or bacteria, therefore, it is better not to eat prawns that are 2 days past the use-by date because no one wants to eat some old prawns at the expense of their health, Right?

Generally, prawns last for about 2-3 days from the day of purchase if stored properly in the refrigerator, and in order to enjoy the best quality of the prawns, it is better to devour them as soon as possible.

It is worth mentioning that when it comes to the use-by date then you can use the prawns that are past this date provided that it was already stored properly in the freezer (before the use-by date).

The cold temperature of the freezer halts the bacterial growth on the prawns, thereby preserving their quality for quite a long time.

Moreover, the way you have stored your prawns also impacts the shelf life of the prawns.

For instance, if your prawns were stored for more than 2 hours at room temperature (or more than 1 hour if the temperature is above 90 degrees Fahrenheit) then it is better to discard them as bacteria grow best at 40 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit and there are chances of your prawns to be already bacteria-laden in this case.

Different ways to spot bad prawns

Certain indicators point out bad prawns, therefore you should consider the color, texture, and smell of your prawns to reach a final verdict whether they have gone bad or not.

Color 

If you notice that your prawns have discolored or are dull in appearance then it is an indication that your fish is past its prime time.

Texture 

If you feel something slimy or gooey while touching the prawns then it means that your prawns have gone bad and it is better to discard them. 

But keep one thing in mind that rinsing the prawns won’t help you in this scenario as you won’t be able to get rid of the bacteria. Rather rinsing the bacteria-laden prawns will put you at risk of cross-contamination as the bacteria will spread in the utensils and other food items that will come in contact with the water from the prawns that have gone bad.

It is worth mentioning that you should wash your hands thoroughly after touching the bacteria-laden prawns or else the bacteria will transfer from your hands to any other thing that comes in contact with your hands.

Smell 

If you smell a very intense fishy smell or if you smell something putrid while taking a sniff test of your prawns then it means that your prawns have gone bad and you should discard them.  

Other FAQs about Shrimp which you may be interested in.

How long does thawed shrimp last in the fridge?

Health implications of eating bad prawns

The most common case that you can see regarding the consumption of bad prawns is the incidence of shellfish poisoning. 

Eating prawns that are infected with viruses can cause shellfish poisoning which is characterized by abdominal pain, cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. In the case of devouring pawns that are bacteria-laden, a person can experience fever and can have blood in stools.

  1. Diarrhea is an indication of the body that a certain obnoxious agent has entered it. So consumption of bad prawns often causes diarrhea.
  1. Shellfish poisoning after consuming bad prawns is characterized by abdominal pain. Abdominal pain is also accompanied by vomiting and nausea in most cases.
  1. If you have consumed prawns that were infected with viruses then you will experience nausea and vomiting which is the natural defense of the body to get rid of the unwanted harmful substance that has entered the body.
  1. Consuming bacteria-laden prawns will also raise your body temperature and you can experience fever which is the natural defense mechanism of your body and is the indicator that something is off with your body.

In this case, you should immediately take medical help and try to drink as much water as possible so that while the body is getting rid of the toxins in form of diarrhea and vomiting, the water that you drink will protect your body against dehydration that vomiting can otherwise result in.

You can read more about shellfish poisoning here.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question “can you eat prawns 2 days after the use-by date” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not you can eat prawns that are past the use-by date. 

Citations

https://www.bhg.com.au/how-long-do-prawns-last-in-the-fridge#:~:text=If%20your%20prawns%20are%20slimy,it%20may%20already%20be%20spoiled.

https://www.webmd.com/first-aid/wilderness-shellfish-poisoning-gastrointestinal

https://www.bhg.com.au/how-long-do-prawns-last-in-the-fridge#:~:text=Whether%20they%20were%20grilled%20for,from%20the%20date%20of%20purchase.

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.