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Do Onions Go Bad?

Do Onions Go Bad?

The reason why fridges and freezers are so useful is that it helps us extend the life of food and not waste it.

However, eventually, it will go bad, which is why we use expiration dates. These dates let people know when food should be eaten, refrigerated, or frozen.

It doesn’t matter how short or long these expiration dates are. All of them are useful!

One popular food people may wonder about going bad is onions. In this article, we will figure out if onions can go bad, how long they can last, and everything you need to know about the subject!

Can Onions Go Bad, and if So, How Long Do They Last?

It shouldn’t be surprising to learn that onions can go bad. No food lasts forever except salt, but that isn’t a food and is more of a spice.

Onions can last for a certain period depending on certain factors, like if it’s whole, cut, or cooked.

This includes:

  • Raw onions that are still whole can last about two to three months if they are stored in a nice cool, and dry environment. They can even last this long in the fridge if you want to put them in there. However, keep in mind that the texture can be wonky if they are kept in the fridge.
  • Peeled or cut onions need to be put in the fridge and can last about seven to 10 days. Unfortunately, once you peel and/or cut them, then they lose the ability to stay as fresh as they would in the whole form.
  • Cooked onions can only last about four days in the fridge.
  • If you are wondering if you can freeze onions, then we have good news! Cooked onions can last up to a year in the freezer, and raw onions can last up to eight months. Just make sure that you are storing them properly in the freezer.
  • Compared to some other foods out there, onions tend to last a decent amount of time if in the right conditions!

What Happens if You Eat Bad Onions?

Despite our best efforts, we might end up eating onions that have gone bad. The biggest risk of eating a bad onion is coming down with food poisoning or some bacteria-borne illnesses.

Common symptoms of these illnesses are usually vomiting, nausea, stomach cramps, fever, and diarrhea.

You are just going to end up with mild-to-moderate sickness if you do get sick from eating bad onions. Sometimes you can end up with a serious illness, but this is exceedingly rare, so try not to worry too much about it.

In the next section, we will go into how to tell if onions are bad so you can avoid getting sick. Hey, no one likes to get sick, no matter how mild the sickness is.

How To Tell if Onions Are Bad

There are several ways to tell if onions are bad. This includes:

  • The biggest sign is if there is mold on the outside of the onion. Also, if the onion is discolored, then it’s spoiled.
  • The softer an onion is, the bigger chance there is that it’s bad. They need to be firm when you touch them and not feel squishy under any circumstances.
  • If the onion has an odor, then it’s bad. We know that onions do have a strong smell that can drive you to tears, but if it also smells bad, this is a bad sign.
  • Any sprouts on the onion mean the onion is not in good condition to eat. The more sprouts there are, the worse off it is.
  • Finally, if the onion is dry and wilted, then it’s definitely on its way to becoming spoiled.

By following all these signs, you’ll soon become an expert at being able to tell if an onion is bad. If you get enough practice, then you may even be able to spot it from a mile away!

How to Safely Store Onions

There are a few things you can do to make sure your onions are safely stored. This includes:

  • Onions need to be kept away from moisture. Remember, a dry and cool place is where they have to be stored. The dryer the area is, the better chance your onions have of lasting longer.
  • The temperature needs to be cool. If you can’t find a cool enough place in the house, then you can always put it in the fridge. This is one of the great things about the onion. Some raw foods don’t do well when you put them in the fridge, but onions surely are not one of them.
  • Make sure you keep onions away from other foods. The best way to do this is just to put it in a container or Ziplock bag.

These rules are pretty simple to follow, and they are so obvious that you may have never thought of them in the first place!

Nothing wrong with this. Sometimes the most obvious thing is the hardest thing to think of.

Keep in mind that before you decide to start using the onion, give it the smell test. Even if you have safely stored it, it doesn’t hurt to give it a look over and sniff it to see if there are any odors.

Always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to food.

Final Thoughts

And there you go, all you onion lovers out there! Now you know that not only can onions go bad, but you shouldn’t eat them if it has because you could get sick.

The best way to avoid this is by either knowing the signs of an onion going bad or safely storing them in the first place.

However, we know that mistakes can happen despite our best efforts not to make them.

If you end up eating something bad, you can just make sure not to do it a second time. Like they say, fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me!

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