Can You Eat Spoiled Food If You Cook It?
Technically, cooking spoiled food may/will kill most of the bacteria present in the spoiled food so theoretically it may be safe to eat but it is still advised to not consume them as some bacteria are quite heat resistant and may not die which in turn will make the food toxic.
Food poisoning is usually caused by toxins produced by bacteria in foods that were improperly cooked or refrigerated. Food poisoning – also called foodborne illness – is caused by harmful germs, like bacteria, in contaminated food.
Symptoms of foodborne illness may begin within hours or weeks of eating contaminated food. Symptoms are most often seen 12 to 36 hours after eating contaminated food, but they can start as early as six hours or as late as ten days after eating. Symptoms may occur between 30 minutes to three weeks after eating infected food. Food poisoning is generally treated at home, with most cases resolved in three to five days.
If your meat is contaminated with pathogenic bacteria, such as Salmonella, Staphylococcus, Clostridium, or E. coli, you could get really sick with food poisoning. If a poor-quality meat has been contaminated with anything pathogenic, like bacteria or toxins, that could make you sick. Foodborne pathogens in raw meat can spread easily into cooked foods, causing food poisoning.
Never allow raw meat, poultry, or seafood to come in contact with cooked meats or any ready-to-eat foods, because doing so may result in cross-contamination. Never marinate meat, poultry, or seafood at the countertop, nor use the same marinade for raw meat as you do for cooked foods. Also, if you use the same marinade on raw meat as well as cooked, the bacteria that are bad from raw foods may transfer to the cooked foods.
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Eating rotten meat, either in its raw form or cooked, can lead to food poisoning and other health problems. You cannot taste, see, or even smell all the bacteria that cause food poisoning, and tasting even just a small amount of contaminated food can lead to severe illnesses. Because bacteria usually do not alter a foods taste, smell, or appearance, you cannot tell whether or not the food is unsafe to eat.
|Can cooking spoiled meat makes it possible to eat?||At what temperature should the meat be cooked?|
|Cooking may destroy the bacteria in it, but it will not get rid of the toxins and spores that they left in it.||The meat should be cooked at safe temperatures (145-155°F).|
|Nevertheless, eating it after cooking will lead to food poisoning and symptoms are often seen 12-36 hours after consuming.||For ground beef, it should reach an internal temperature of 165°F.|
Even if you kill some bacteria by cooking it, its toxins remain in the food and make you sick. The body breaks down the food using the highly acidic excretions of your stomach, but some bacteria are not affected by that environment and they will start disrupting your immune systems normal functions. If you consume bacteria spores, they may become active and turn into living bacteria, who then will manufacture toxins directly inside of your body, and it is these toxins that may do severe to deadly harm.
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If foods are left too long, certain bacteria, like Staphylococcus aureus (Staph), may form a heat-resistant toxin which cannot be destroyed by cooking. Although prolonged heat may disinfect decomposing foods, mutagens, carcinogens, and teratogens are still present in decaying foods. Foods that are high in moisture, such as meat, poultry, seafood, and dairy products, and fruits and vegetables, are a prime breeding ground for harmful bacteria.
Organic, locally grown foods, as well as others, may become exposed to harmful bacteria in the growing and harvesting process. Bacteria that are on the shells of eggs and within eggs can contaminate foods containing uncooked eggs and lead to food poisoning. Most foods, particularly meat, poultry, fish, and eggs, must be cooked vigorously to destroy most types of food poisoning bacteria. Cooked foods are only safe once they are heated to a high enough internal temperature to destroy harmful bacteria.
The only way to know if meat has been cooked to a safe internal temperature is with a food thermometer. If you really want to kill the bacteria, you need to get it up to 165F, minimum. The same rules apply for cooking foods that are supposed to go under 140F–you are allotted one hour. If you are not planning to eat the meat in the FDAs recommended timeframe, you can prevent the meat from going bad by freezing it to 0 degrees F. The USDA says freezing foods at 0 degrees F will kill bacteria and other germs.
If the food is left outside in a room or outdoors with temperatures of 90 degrees F or higher, it needs to be refrigerated or discarded in only 1 hour. Perishable foods should be placed in a cooler with 40 degrees F or less within 2 hours of cooking. If a high-risk food has been left for two hours in the temperature danger zone, it should be heated, stored refrigerated, or consumed.
Only freeze meats prior to the date of use; freezing meat that has gone bad does not make the meat safer to eat to begin with. To prevent food poisoning, throw out raw meat once it is past its expiration date, or if you suspect that it is spoiled. Throwing away is a good practice any time you notice that there is spoiled meat in your refrigerator or freezer, because unless it is thrown away, others in your family may make the mistake of cooking it and eating it, too.
Cooking may destroy the bacteria and moulds populating it, but will not remove the toxins and spores that remain. Despite the fact that damaging your meat can destroy the bacteria and molds that populated it, it will not get rid of the toxins and spores that they left in it. According to Johns Hopkins, damaged meat can cause you food poisoning due to toxins produced by bacteria that once grew inside of it. It also releases harmful toxins that can cause food poisoning, which remain stable if exposed to high heat, even after coming in contact with the scorching-hot grill rack, or heat radiating from your pan or oven while you are cooking.
When cooked, foods should be eaten immediately, kept above 60 degrees Celsius, or chilled, covered, and stored in a refrigerator or freezer. If uncooked foods are thawed outside of the fridge, such as in a microwave oven or with cold water, they must be cooked immediately. Foods that are opened or cooked must be thrown out within seven days, according to FDA Food Code.
Wash hands and utensils after using cutting boards, countertops, and knives that had contact with raw foods. All utensils and surfaces should be washed in hot soapy water before and after using them for cooking. Cook steaks, cuts, and whole cuts of red meat according to their preferences, because the food-poisoning bacteria are primarily located at the surfaces. Avoid giving foods that contain raw eggs to pregnant women, small children, older adults, and anyone with a suppressed immune system.
How can you tell if food is spoiled?
Spoiled food has a different, strong smell that will never make you feel pleasant. In addition to a disliked smell, bad foods can be damp or muddy to the touch. Rotten foods will also experience a slight color change, and poultry should be bluish-white to yellow in its looks
Can you cook spoiled food to kill bacteria?
Foodborne bacteria can be eliminated by properly cooking and reheating. However, if the food is exposed to room temperature for an extended period of time, some foodborne bacteria can generate toxins or poisons that are resistant to high cooking temperatures.
Can you cook slightly spoiled meat?
Even though the germs that make meat go bad are typically not dangerous, when it spoils, other disease-causing microorganisms can grow. Always cook meat thoroughly, and stay away from ground beef that is rotten or undercooked, to lower your risk of infection.