Can you get sick from eating expired ranch dressing?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “Can you get sick from eating expired ranch dressing” with an in-depth analysis of the health implications of eating expired ranch dressing. 

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.

Can you get sick from eating expired ranch dressing?

When it comes to ranch dressing then it can still stay good to use a few weeks past the printed date on it provided that it is stored properly. But once ranch dressing goes bad and becomes bacteria-laden then the consumption of bad ranch dressing can lead to many food-borne illnesses especially food poisoning.

It is worth mentioning that instead of the “expiration date”, you will find a “best by” or “best before date” written on the packet of ranch dressing. 

The “best by” or “best before” date that is written on the pack of ranch dressing refers to quality rather than safety so the ranch dressing doesn’t necessarily go bad immediately after the best before date. 

This date refers to the time during which you can enjoy the peak quality and flavor of the ranch dressing but you can still eat ranch dressing that is past this date as long as it was stored properly.

Commercially processed ranch dressing lasts for about 1-2 months past the printed date on it if stored properly in the fridge at or below 40°F in an air-tight container or bottle.

You should do a sensory evaluation of your ranch dressing to reach a final verdict if it is still safe to consume or not.

Certain indicators point out the bad ranch dressing. You should consider the appearance, texture, smell, and taste of the ranch dressing to reach a final verdict whether or not it has gone bad.

Appearance

If you spot a mold in your ranch dressing then it means that it has gone bad and you should discard the whole ranch dressing in this case.

Moreover, if you notice that the texture of the ranch dressing has changed then it means that it is past its prime time.

Smell

If you smell an intense sour smell or something foul while taking a sniff test of your ranch dressing then it means that ranch dressing has gone bad and the best thing to do in this scenario is to get rid of it.

Taste

If you feel something funky, bitter, or too sour while tasting a bit of your ranch dressing then it points out a bad ranch dressing and it is better to toss it out.

It is worth mentioning that whenever you consume a food that is contaminated with bacteria and other microbes, there is a deferral before symptoms of illness become clear, which may last from hours to days, contingent on how many microbes and what sort of microorganisms has been consumed by you. 

Now if somehow bacteria and other microbes find their way to your ranch dressing then the consumption of such ranch dressing can result in food poisoning. Food poisoning after the consumption of bacteria-laden or bad ranch dressing is characterized by nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, weakness, and mild fever. 

  1. Diarrhea is an indication of the body that a certain obnoxious agent has entered it. So consumption of spoiled ranch dressing often causes diarrhea. Therefore you should drink plenty of water to compensate for the water loss that the body experiences owing to diarrhea.
  1. Food poisoning after consuming ranch dressing that has gone bad is characterized by abdominal pain. Abdominal pain and cramps may likewise take place in the wake of devouring spoiled ranch dressing. 
  1. If you have consumed ranch dressing that has gone bad 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 ranch dressing that has spoiled 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.

Persistent vomiting and diarrhea can result in electrolyte imbalance in the body and lead to severe dehydration, dizziness, flushed skin, and weakness. It is advised to drink plenty of water to save the body from dehydration as severe dehydration can even lead to shock.

Other FAQs about Ranch Dressing which you may be interested in.

Can you get sick from eating expired ranch dressing?

Tips to properly store ranch dressing

  1. You should close the lid of the container tightly as soon as you are done scooping out the amount of ranch dressing that you need.
  1. You should store your ranch dressing container on one of the shelves of the refrigerator rather than the door as there is a lot of temperature fluctuation at the door of the fridge that can mess up the quality of the ranch dressing.
  1. You should always use a dry and clean spoon to scoop out the ranch dressing from its container.
  1. You should never double dip and in case you need another teaspoon of ranch dressing then it is better to grab a new spoon or wash the used one before using it again.

You can read how to make ranch dressing at home here.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question “Can you get sick from eating expired ranch dressing” with an in-depth analysis of the health implications of eating expired ranch dressing.

Citations

Salad Dressing

https://www.nbcnews.com/know-your-value/feature/6-expiration-dates-you-can-ignore-1-you-can-t-ncna936011
https://everythingwhat.com/how-long-can-you-keep-salad-dressing-after-expiration-date

Mahnoor Asghar is a Clinical Nutritionist with a bachelor's degree in Nutrition and Dietetics. She is compassionate and dedicated to playing her part in the well-being of the masses. She wants to play a fruitful role in creating nutrition and health-related awareness among the general public. Additionally, she has a keen eye for detail and loves to create content related to food, nutrition, health, and wellness.