How to tell if pepperoni is bad?

In this brief article, we will answer the question, “how to tell if pepperoni is bad?”. We will also discuss in detail, the shelf life, and storage methods of pepperoni.

How to tell if pepperoni is bad?

You can tell if your pepperoni is bad by looking out for the following changes.

A change in appearances, such as discoloration or the presence of slime on the surface, is the first indication of anything being wrong.

When the sausage is open, the outside surface dries up and changes color, but the rest remains safe. When it is assumed that this is the case, get rid of the dry component and enjoy the rest.

The second step is to determine if the odor has changed. Throw it out if it smells rancid or putrid (pepperoni contains oil).

When it comes to sausages, a feeling of sliminess or stickiness indicates that it has gone bad.

If it looks that everything is correct, slice a sample and examine it. If it tastes good, you may use it on anything you are cooking for your dinner. Otherwise, toss it in the garbage.

When it comes to pepperoni, how long does it last?

Every pepperoni recipe is unique. Varying brands utilize different quantities of preservatives.

As a result, there is no good way to estimate the general shelf life of pepperoni. The only certain thing is that it is almost always longer than a month, but that is about it.

Therefore, we must trust the date printed on the label. Also known as the “best-by” or “best-before” date, this estimate represents how long a product is expected to stay fresh.

Of course, the sausage will not go bad for another day or two after that date, so you have some breathing room. When you buy uncooked sausage that is offered at room temperature, keep it refrigerated to prolong its shelf life. Yes, you can freeze pepperoni.

To test how long the pepperoni stick can stay open, open it and then check the label. This time duration varies but can range between one week to three weeks. Additionally, it is very dependent on the ingredients and production method of the producer. It is better to take a little bit of caution and complete the stick in less than a week before freezing the rest.

The method used for slicing pepperoni is the same for all. Even if an unopened item has a “use-by” or “sell-by” date on the label, keep an eye on it. After you have opened the package, it should take you approximately a week to finish it.

Please keep in mind that the dates listed below are only estimates.

Pepperoni sticks (unopened, sold unrefrigerated)Best-byBest-by + 1 month
Pepperoni sticks (unopened, sold refrigerated) Sell-by + 1 week
Pepperoni sticks (opened) 1 – 3 weeks
Sliced pepperoni (unopened) Sell-by + 1 week
Sliced pepperoni (opened) 7 days

How to store pepperoni?

When it comes to storing unopened pepperoni sticks, the simplest method is to keep the package at the same temperature as when it was purchased at the store Once the package has been opened, leftover sausage must be refrigerated.

To prevent odors from seeping into the rest of the refrigerator, the package of pepperoni should be securely covered. Depending on the situation, there are a few ways to handle this.

If the stick is tiny enough to fit, leave the air out of the bag, seal it, and put it in the freezer. You will also need to cover the uncovered portion with aluminium or plastic wrap if that is not a possibility. If you would like, you may even break the whole stick into many smaller pieces, wrap or bag each piece separately, and wrap them separately.

Like all other deli meats, pepperoni slices should be stored in the refrigerator, to help maintain freshness.

Is it possible to freeze pepperoni?

Although freezing pepperoni extends its shelf life, some manufacturers do not recommend it because the texture may be compromised. If you do not mind and are looking for a way to extend your supply, go ahead and try it for yourself.

The package’s packaging could include a “freeze-by” date that may be printed on the box. Freezing the pepperoni ahead of time yields the finest results.

Freezing a pepperoni stick will not help in defrosting it. Pepperoni slices may be stored at low temperatures and thawed rapidly. Separating the slices into pieces before thawing them makes it easy to re-thaw each slice. Freeze them for later use, preferably in a freezer bag or a zip lock bag.


In this brief article, we answered the question, “how to tell if pepperoni is bad?”. We also discussed in detail, the shelf life and storage methods of pepperoni.


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.