Why does cheese say eat within 3 days? 

In this brief article, we will answer the question, “Why does cheese say eat within 3 days?” methods to store cheese and detect spoilt cheese.

Why does cheese say eat within 3 days?

Cheese says eat within 3 days because it needs to be consumed within 3 days immediately after it is opened. This rule can especially apply to soft cheeses as hard cheeses can stay for a longer duration under proper storage conditions.

What is the shelf-life of cheese?

The shelf-life of different varieties of cheese is provided below.

Type of cheeseFridgeFreezer
Hard cheese (unopened)2-4 months7-8 months
Hard cheese (opened)6 weeks5-6 months
Semi-soft and semi-hard cheeses3 weeks2 months
Soft cheeses (unopened)1-2 weeks5-6 months
Soft cheeses (opened)2 weeks__

How to store cheese?

  • Opt to store cheeses in wax paper rather than cling film. This helps in keeping the cheese away from excess moisture and also prevents the cheese from drying.

Cling film can take in moisture and encourage mold growth on the cheese.

  • Avoid keeping your cheese in plastic wrap. This is because the cheese can absorb the flavors and start emitting a plastic odor if wrapped in plastic.
  • Avoid wrapping the cheese extremely tight or extremely loose. When cheese is wrapped extremely tightly, the cheese does not get enough space to breathe and there is reduced airflow. 

Certain cheeses might start emitting a smell similar to ammonia when wrapped too tight. If the cheese is wrapped extremely loose, it can harden and dry out because of the loss of moisture.

  • You can place the cheese in cheese bags or cheese paper. It can also be placed in a partially sealed plastic bag after wrapping it in cheese paper, wax paper, or parchment paper.

If the cheese was processed, you can place them in its original bag as well. You can also wrap the cheese in aluminum foil and then place it in the cheese bag as well if you wish to completely get rid of the plastic.

  • If the cheeses release a lot of moisture, you might need to replace the wax paper or parchment paper frequently. If the reused paper is used, again and again, the cheese would be unable to breathe and emit a foul odor.
  • Soft cheeses spoil much quickly than harder cheeses. It is important to remember that if you have bought both varieties of cheeses at home, finish the soft cheese first before moving on to the hard cheese.
  • If you have smaller slices of cheeses, it can lose out moisture quickly. Such cheeses can be put in a brine solution. If you find the brine solution contaminated, replace the brine solution.
  • Label the cheese before it is stored in the fridge or the freezer. This would help you to remember the date of storage and you can accordingly plan to use up the cheese.
  • Avoid buying cheese in bulk especially soft cheese. This is because you might be unable to finish large quantities of cheese on time leading to spoilage of cheese and ultimately wastage. Buy only the required amounts of cheese.
  • If you want to prevent mold from growing on the cheese, you can rub the cheese slices with vegetable oil. You can then store the cheese in an airtight pack. 

If you observe mold growth, remove it using cloth, and then it would be safe to consume. This is because the mold growing on the oil rubbed in the cheese and not exactly on the cheese, making the cheese safer to eat.

How to detect spoilt cheese?

  • Smell the cheese to determine its odor. If the cheese gives off a foul smell, it is likely to be spoilt. Some cheeses give out an ammonia-like odor but it is not likely to be an indicator of spoilage. 

This smell can arise if you wrap the cheese too tightly which can trap the moisture and gases underneath giving off an ammonia-like smell or if the cheese does not have enough room to breathe.

  • If the mold grows on the surface of hard cheese, you can cut the part that contains the mold and consume the rest. If the mold has developed on soft cheese, the mold has likely got inside the cheese and it is better to discard it.
  • If you observe the texture of soft cheese to be hardened, avoid buying them.

Other FAQs about Cheese that you may be interested in.

Is cheese safe to eat past the expiration date?

Is cheese safe to eat with mold?

What can I use as a substitute for gruyere cheese?


In this brief article, we have answered the question, “Why does cheese say eat within 3 days?” methods to store cheese and detect spoilt cheese.