If you’re anything like me, you probably get a little anxious when pork chops in the fridge are starting to go bad. You don’t want to waste food, but you also don’t want to get sick. So, how can you tell if pork chops are bad?
You can tell fresh pork chops are bad when they develop a completely grayish-dull color or have greenish patches. Or they may have a sour smell accompanied by a slimy texture. If you notice any signs that they have spoiled, then they should be thrown out and not eaten.
If you’re still not sure, stick around, and I’ll explain in more detail about all the signs of spoilage when it comes to the almighty pork chop.
How To Know If Pork Chops Are Bad
The Expiration Date Has Passed
Similar to ground pork, the best-before date will tell you when fresh pork chops should no longer be eaten. If the pork chops are past this date, they may not be safe to eat.
Cooked pork chops are typically good for up to three to four days in the fridge. That may also depend on what types of sauces you have used on them or how old your fresh pork was before cooking.
If your pork chops were left sitting out after eating at your last BBQ, it’s probably best to toss them.
Otherwise, I always recommend finishing up your leftover pork the next day to be on the safe side. This doesn’t apply to freezing pulled pork, when you want to save it for later.
Your Pork Chops Smell
Raw pork chops may have a light smell, if any, at all. If they smell sour, fishy, or have an ammonia-like scent, it’s probably best to toss them.
The same goes for cooked pork chops. If they are starting to smell off, chances are they’re no longer good to eat. And reheating bad pork chops won’t prevent you from getting sick, so toss them out.
When pork chops start to smell, it’s because bacteria have started to grow exponentially, and the meat has already begun the process of spoilage.
However, smell alone doesn’t always tell you when pork chops are bad.
Your Pork Chops Are Gray
Discolored fresh pork chops are another sign that they have either started to go bad or have already expired.
Cooked pork chops should be gray from the cooking process as shown above. They may not change color as they spoil, but if you notice any off-colored patches or green, do not eat them or feed them to your pets. Throw them in the garbage.
Raw pork chops should be pink and the fat white. If they have turned gray, it’s a big red flag that they may have gone bad.
However, if they have a slight color change from something stacked on them, it may be because blood and juices were pushed out of the meat and have less oxygen to keep them pink.
Your Pork Chops Are Slimy
Fresh pork chops may feel a little slimy or sticky to the touch. This is quite normal as long as the smell doesn’t alert you otherwise.
When pork arrives at your Butcher, it is packaged in CRYOVAK packaging (vacuum sealed), which keeps old juices inside, coating the entire pork loin unless cleaned or allowed to drain well.
If your raw chops are slimy from sitting in the fridge, I recommend cooking them immediately and do not put them in the freezer. Freezing nearly expired pork chops can lead to food poisoning when thawed and consumed.
However, it is possible that your slimy raw pork chops have gone off and will need to be disposed of. You should look for other signs to help you determine if it’s time to get rid of your pork.
On the other hand, cooked pork chops should never be slimy. In fact, they should be quite dry from being refrigerated.
But, if you cook them in a lot of fat or oil, they may feel a little greasy when chilled. Use them up quickly if all other signs check out.
Bad Pork Chops FAQs
What Should Pork Chops Smell Like?
Pork chops should have little to no smell. If they smell bad or are not quite right, it’s a sign that they’ve gone bad and should be thrown out. Cooking does not fix a bad pork chop.
What Do Bad Pork Chops Look Like?
In the worst case, a bad pork chop will be green and possibly have mold growing on it. Fresh pork chops that have gone bad may have a slimy, sticky, or tacky surface and be discolored or have off-color patches.
Can Bad Pork Chops Make You Sick?
Yes, bad pork chops can make you sick if they are consumed. Symptoms of food poisoning from eating bad pork include vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, and abdominal pain. If you experience these symptoms after eating bad pork chops, seek medical attention immediately.