When should you not eat pesto?

Answered by Michael Wilson

When should you not eat pesto? One of the most obvious signs that pesto has gone bad is a change in its color. Normally, pesto should have a vibrant green hue, thanks to the fresh basil leaves used in its preparation. However, if you notice that the color has turned from green to brown or even black, it’s a clear indication that the pesto has spoiled and should not be consumed.

Color changes in pesto occur due to oxidation and the breakdown of chlorophyll, the pigment responsible for the green color. As the pesto ages or is exposed to air, the chlorophyll molecules start to degrade, leading to the discoloration. This change in color is an indication that the pesto may have lost its freshness and potentially harbors harmful bacteria.

When you notice that your once bright and vibrant pesto has turned into a murky brown or black shade, it’s time to bid farewell to your beloved condiment. Consuming pesto that has gone bad can lead to food poisoning, causing nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and other unpleasant symptoms. It’s always better to err on the side of caution and avoid consuming questionable food items.

It’s important to note that color changes alone are not the only indicator of pesto spoilage. Pay attention to other signs like a foul smell, mold growth, or a slimy texture. If any of these are present, it further confirms that the pesto has gone bad and should be discarded.

To prevent pesto from spoiling prematurely, proper storage is crucial. Pesto should be refrigerated in an airtight container to slow down the oxidation process. Additionally, consider using a layer of olive oil on top of the pesto to create a barrier against air exposure. This can help maintain its vibrant green color and extend its shelf life.

It’s essential to be mindful of the color of your pesto. If you notice a change from green to brown or black, it’s a clear indication that the pesto has gone bad and should not be consumed. Trust your senses and always prioritize food safety to avoid any potential health risks.