In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “how do you know if a mayonnaise is bad” with an in-depth analysis of different ways to spot a bad mayonnaise and the health implications of eating bad mayonnaise. Moreover, we are going to discuss the shelf life of mayonnaise.
So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.
How do you know if mayonnaise is bad?
You should consider the appearance, texture, color, smell, and taste of mayonnaise to give a final verdict about whether or not mayonnaise has gone bad.
If you spot a mold or some organic growth on your mayonnaise, then the best thing you can do in this scenario is to get rid of the whole mayonnaise.
Moreover, molds can also produce mycotoxins in mayonnaises that have gone bad and if you consume or even inhale these mycotoxins they can disturb your gut flora and can weaken your immune system.
If the mayonnaise has separated to such an extent that you cannot even revive it after whisking then it is better to discard such mayonnaise.
If you notice that your mayonnaise color has inclined towards a shade of yellow, if there are hints of yellow in your otherwise white mayonnaise or has a brownish tinge in it then it is better to discard such mayonnaise.
If you smell a sour or putrid smell while taking a sniff test of your mayonnaise then it is better to get rid of such mayonnaise.
If the mayonnaise has passed the visual and the sniff test then you can go ahead and taste it. If you feel some off-flavors (sour or bitter) while tasting a bit of your mayonnaise then it may point out that your mayonnaise has gone bad and you should discard it.
You should consider the points mentioned above while making a final verdict on whether or not the mayonnaise is suitable to consume.
Health implications of eating bad mayonnaise
Eating bad mayonnaise can put you at the risk of many food-borne illnesses, especially food poisoning. Eating spoiled mayonnaise in a large quantity can cause vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, and abdominal cramps.
A mild food poisoning lasts for about a day or two while a more persistent case of food poisoning can last for about 10 days.
So in case you have devoured bad mayonnaise and are now suffering from vomiting and diarrhea, you should 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.
Moreover, the symptoms of severe and potentially life-threatening food poisoning involve diarrhea persisting for more than 3 days, fever higher than 101.5 degrees Fahrenheit, symptoms of severe dehydration, and bloody urine. In such a case, you should seek medical help immediately.
Is mayonnaise safe to use after the best-before date?
The “best by” or “best before” date that is written on the pack of mayonnaise refers to the quality rather than safety so the mayonnaise 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 mayonnaise but you can still use mayonnaise that is past this date as long as it was stored properly, there is no leakage in the pack and no signs of spoilage are present.
Shelf life of mayonnaise
Commercially processed store-bought unopened mayonnaise lasts for about 3-4 months even after the “best by” date if it is stored in a cool, dry, and dark corner of your pantry away from direct sunlight and heat.
On the other hand, once mayonnaise gets opened, its shelf life decreases and it has to be kept refrigerated to preserve its flavor and quality for a long time.
Opened commercially processed store-bought mayonnaise lasts for about 2 or more months when kept in the fridge at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
If we talk about homemade mayonnaise then it has a shorter shelf life because it does not have any additional preservatives added to it. Thus, the homemade mayonnaise lasts for about a week if it is kept in an air-tight container or jar in the fridge at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
It is worth mentioning that these figures are just the estimated shelf life of mayonnaise and within this time you can enjoy the best quality of the mayonnaise.
You can read different ways to use mayonnaise here.
In this brief guide, we answered the question “how do you know if mayonnaise is bad” with an in-depth analysis of different ways to spot a bad mayonnaise and the health implications of eating bad mayonnaise. Moreover, we discussed the shelf life of mayonnaise.