When is a cucumber bad?

In this brief article, we are going to answer the question “when is a cucumber bad?”. We will also discuss how to store cucumbers in the fridge. In the end, we will discuss what happens if you eat a bad cucumber.

When is a cucumber bad?

A cucumber goes bad when there is visible mold growth. If the cucumber begins to wrinkle or develop cracks, it is certainly old and stale and should be thrown out. 

Throw away your cucumber if it feels mushy to the touch. Additionally, a rotten cucumber will have a squishy instead of a firm core. Sliced bad cucumbers typically have a watery, mushy, slimy texture and turn transparent.

When they start to rot, they take on an unpleasant sour taste and sometimes even turn bitter. If your cucumbers develop dark brown or black spots, that may be a sign that they are going bad. 

It is advised to discard your cucumbers if you notice any such areas because this is where the fungus or germs came into contact with the skin.

Your cucumber should be thrown out immediately if it has become gooey and slimy and is most probably no longer palatable.

It has great nutritional value. Despite having few calories, cucumbers are a great source of numerous vital vitamins and minerals. Electrolytes are abundant in cucumbers. They may promote the health of the heart, bones, and skin, and they can reduce dehydration.

How long do cucumbers last?

When stored correctly, cucumbers last for one to two weeks.

For cucumbers to stay as fresh as possible and to have a longer shelf life, adequate storage is crucial. Cucumbers store best at room temperature on your counter or in the closet in a sealed container.

Sliced and peeled cucumbers decay more quickly than whole, unpeeled cucumbers do because the latter’s outer skin is still in place, delaying rapid deterioration.

Cucumbers can be stored outside of the refrigerator for one to three days, according to the American Heart Association. More than three days in the fridge can result in cooling damage, which can quicken the deterioration process.

Make sure the cucumbers are dry before putting them in the refrigerator because moisture and too much water on the surface might speed up spoiling.

Put the cucumbers in a plastic bag or wrap them in a paper towel. Place them in the crisper drawer or the warmest spot in the fridge, such as next to the door.

When exposed to the ripening agent ethylene, cucumbers are more susceptible to spoilage and over-ripening because of their sensitivity. Keep your cucumbers away from maturing fruits and vegetables like melons, tomatoes, or bananas to prevent rapid degradation. 

Cucumbers that have been frozen turn to ice and develop a mushy and wilted texture when thawed because of their high water content and moisture level. Since cucumbers don’t freeze well, freezing them is not advised. 

To prevent the exposed flesh from drying out, put a paper towel or piece of plastic wrap around the cut end of the cucumbers. Put the cucumbers in an airtight container.

How to store cucumbers in the fridge?

Whole cucumbers can be kept in the fridge for about two weeks. To prevent the cucumbers from ripening too soon, do not put them in any plastic packaging. 

To store cucumbers, first, wash them with chilled water. Dry them using a kitchen towel.

Now cover them with paper towels. Individual cucumbers should be wrapped in a paper towel to absorb any water they emit and keep them from becoming soggy.

Put the cucumbers in a jar for storage. To prevent drying out, put the wrapped cucumbers in a velcro bag or an airtight container.

Place the cucumbers in the vegetable drawer. Keep cucumbers away from ethylene-releasing fruits like apples, which hasten the ripening of nearby fruits and vegetables.

Position cucumbers near the front of the fridge. Cucumbers can suffer chilling effects, such as mushy patches and quicker deterioration, when stored below 49 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Cucumbers should be kept at the warmest spot in the front of the refrigerator if the crisper drawer is not an option.

Whole cucumbers can also be kept on a tabletop at room temperature. Cucumbers can be kept fresh at room temperature if there is no sun exposure.

What happens if you eat bad cucumbers?

Within 12 to 72 hours of eating a bad cucumber, a Salmonella infection often occurs. It results in diarrhea, fever, and stomach pains. 

Most people recover on their own after being unwell for 4 to 7 days on average. But for people who are extremely young, extremely old, or who have weaker immune systems, it could be dangerous.

Consuming rotten cucumbers may cause significant health issues or food poisoning. 

Cucurbitacin, a chemical found in cucumbers, has many unpleasant side effects on human health, including unconsciousness,  hallucinations, seizures, vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach discomfort.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has even issued a warning, stating that even trace levels of this substance could be dangerous to those who already have certain medical problems.

Conclusion

In this brief article, we answered the question “when is a cucumber bad?”. We also discussed how to store cucumbers in the fridge. In the end, we discussed what happens if you eat a bad cucumber.

References

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/7-health-benefits-of-cucumber

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.