How to Tell if Turkey Bacon is Bad: Signs of Spoiled Bacon & Storage Tips

Turkey bacon, a lean alternative to pork bacon, can spoil if handled improperly. Signs include slimy texture, off smell, color changes, and unpleasant taste. Refrigerate properly, freeze if needed, and discard if in doubt.

how to tell if turkey bacon is bad

Breakfast food can be and is eaten at any time of the day. One of the most popular options is bacon. While pork bacon is very popular, many people love turkey bacon.

It’s lean and doesn’t have as many calories as pork bacon. Health-conscious individuals often choose turkey bacon over pork bacon as an alternative.

It’s important to eat this in moderation, just like with pork bacon. Additionally, choosing the reduced-sodium version of turkey bacon or tempeh bacon is healthier.

One of the worst things that can happen is going to the refrigerator to make breakfast and the turkey bacon looks a little suspicious. While it’s much easier to tell when pork bacon has gone bad, how can you really tell when turkey bacon isn’t good anymore?

Turkey bacon already has a different consistency than pork bacon, the tell-tale signs may be a little difficult. It’s already a little silky, which can throw you off if you aren’t used to it. There are ways to tell when turkey bacon has gone bad, though. Here are a few:

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Slimy or slick

Turkey bacon feels like silk and is smooth to the touch. When it starts feeling off, that’s a clear indicator that it’s going bad or is already there.

Getting used to how turkey bacon feels may take a minute. If at any time the turkey bacon comes out of the packaging feeling slimy, take it back for a refund because it is going bad.


If it smells funny, your nose isn’t playing tricks on you – it’s time to throw it out. A good indicator that the turkey bacon has gone bad is that it starts to smell a little sour instead of its usual smell.


Turkey bacon is light pink. Any variations are tell-tale signs that something is going on. You should be aware of the color, even when purchasing at the grocery store.

It may start turning brown or grey, which is indicative of the bacon going bad. In some cases, the turkey bacon may also seem as if it is starting to mold. If it looks like that, throw it away.


If everything seems fine and you cook the turkey bacon, you’ll be able to tell if something is off. It should taste like turkey, but leaner. If the taste makes you feel bad, it’s time to throw it all out. Don’t swallow it because it can cause food poisoning.

When you purchase from the store, your “sell by” date can throw things off. Just because there is a date attached, you don’t know what went on before it was packaged.

Additionally, turkey bacon needs to be refrigerated. It should not be left out for more than two hours. If you’re driving around, give it one hour.

Turkey bacon is ultra-processed, which could pose a problem over time. This increases the likelihood of the bacon going bad if left out for longer periods of time.

If the turkey bacon is left out for over two hours, it’s not safe to eat it. It will pose a significant risk to your health and others that consume it.

Handling turkey bacon

Turkey Bacon

When handling turkey bacon, it’s important to wash your hands to make sure there aren’t any bacteria on your hands or tools.

Once you’ve touched raw turkey bacon, it’s important to clean and sanitize the area and wash with warm, soapy water.

How long does turkey bacon last in the refrigerator?

If you just purchased the turkey bacon, once you open it, you have about 7 to 14 days. Although this is based on what the manufacturer says, there may be a time when the turkey bacon doesn’t last that long.

Again, it’s always good to follow your gut. If you know you won’t be using the entire pack within that time frame, the best solution would be to freeze it, so it won’t spoil.

When storing bacon in the refrigerator, using the original packaging until opened makes sense. Once the package has been opened, transferring the turkey bacon to an airtight bag or container will help keep its shelf life.

It is also a good idea to have the turkey bacon in the coldest part of the refrigerator to ensure it is being kept at the right temperature.

If you have frozen bacon, it will last in the freezer for a few months, no more than five. If it stays in the freezer for five months, it should be put there immediately after purchasing. As a rule of thumb, plan on using frozen turkey bacon before the three-month date.

If the turkey bacon has been cooked, it should be refrigerated as soon as possible – at least within a two-hour period. This will help extend the life of the cooked bacon. Wrap it in aluminum foil or plastic wrap to make sure it is not exposed.

How long is unopened turkey bacon good for?

When you’ve purchased fresh bacon and haven’t used it within 7 to 14 days, you may have to throw it out. If you have had it in the refrigerator on the coldest setting and the package has been unopened, you may be able to have in the refrigerator up to 30 days before you must throw it out.

Each situation is different.

If you’re just opening the package after the sell-by date, it’s important to look at the consistency and smell of the turkey bacon. If the light pink color is still there and there is no smell, it may be consumable. If there are any indications that it is not in the best condition, do not eat it.

If the bacon has not been opened and the expiration date has passed, it may be safe for a day or two. Again, check all the signs that indicate it is no longer good for consumption.

The USDA says if there is a “sell by” date instead of a “use by” date, it can be kept for two weeks if unopened.

If your refrigeration methods do not work, you will start seeing signs that the turkey bacon is taking a turn for the worse.

Always take a good look at the turkey bacon before starting to cook it. Take a minute to smell it and most of all, do not ignore it when it feels slimy or like something nasty.

Can turkey bacon go bad overnight? With the right conditions in place, absolutely. Refrigeration is the best line of defense in making sure it is in good condition before you cook it.

FAQs about How To Tell If Turkey Bacon Is Bad

Did my turkey bacon go bad?

Your turkey bacon has gone bad if it becomes slimy due to the growth of lactic acid bacteria. This is a common indication that it is no longer safe to consume. The texture will become slimy and occasionally gooey, making it unsuitable for consumption. While turkey bacon, like other raw meats, may have a slightly squishy texture, it should not be slimy.

Can you tell if bacon has gone bad?

You can determine if bacon has gone bad by observing its appearance. Rancid bacon loses its redness and instead appears brown, gray, or greenish, with a faded color. Additionally, it develops an unpleasant smell and may become sticky or slimy.

What happens when turkey bacon turns brown?

When turkey bacon turns brown, it is an indication that it may have spoiled. If the bacon still maintains its natural pink color with white or yellow fat, it is still safe to consume. However, if the bacon has turned brown or gray and has a hint of green or blue, it has already gone bad. This change in color is a result of a chemical reaction caused by excessive exposure to air.

Can you cook turkey bacon after the expiration date?

You should not cook turkey bacon after the expiration date. If the turkey bacon is bad, it will have a slimy and sticky texture. It is important to dispose of the spoiled meat and disinfect any surface it has come in contact with, including your hands. While other factors may be helpful, it is best to avoid consuming turkey bacon that has passed its expiration date on the package.

How long does turkey bacon last in the fridge?

Turkey bacon can last in the fridge for 3-5 days and can be frozen for up to 3 months. To freeze, simply store the slices in a single layer in airtight containers or freezer bags. Stasher bags are also a good option for freezing turkey bacon.

Is bacon good after 3 weeks in the fridge?

Bacon is generally good for about 2 weeks from the time you purchase it at the grocery store if there is no expiration date provided. However, if the bacon is cured without nitrites, it can last up to 3 weeks in the fridge. Once the package is opened, it is recommended to consume all types of bacon within 7 days or before the printed date if it is sooner.

How long is bacon good in the fridge after thawing?

The bacon will stay good unopened for up to 7 days after thawing in the fridge, according to the USDA. While frozen bacon can technically be safe to eat indefinitely, it is recommended to consume it within a few months for optimal quality and taste.

Is turkey bacon slimy but smells OK?

Turkey bacon that is slimy but smells okay is not safe to eat. It should be discarded if it feels soft, slightly squishy, and moist to the touch, as these are signs of bad turkey bacon.

How long is unopened turkey bacon good in the fridge?

Unopened turkey bacon can be safely stored in the refrigerator for a maximum of two weeks or until seven days after the expiration date, whichever occurs first. If the package is opened, it should be tightly wrapped and can be stored in the fridge for up to one week.

What does cooked turkey bacon look like?

Cooked turkey bacon looks like a crispy, rich brown and should not have any pink or translucent meat when removed from the oven.

Can I eat raw turkey bacon?

You cannot eat raw turkey bacon as it poses a risk of foodborne illness, just like pork bacon. It is important to cook all types of bacon before consuming them.

Is turkey bacon greasy?

Turkey bacon is not greasy. Unlike pork bacon, which can yield about 1 tablespoon of fat from four strips, some turkey bacons do not produce any fat at all. However, it is still important to have some fat in the skillet when cooking turkey bacon to ensure that it makes full and even contact with the heat, resulting in crispier strips. Rest assured, though, that the cooked turkey bacon will not be greasy.

Why doesn’t turkey bacon get crispy?

Turkey bacon doesn’t get crispy because the slices need to be in a single layer. If they overlap, they won’t crisp up very well. Additionally, it is important to preheat the oven before cooking to ensure that it gets nice and hot.

What does rancid bacon fat taste like?

Rancid bacon fat tastes bitter and harsh or emits a chemical-like smell, indicating that it has gone bad. It can last for months at room temperature but eventually becomes rancid.

Is slightly grey bacon OK?

Slightly grey bacon is acceptable as long as it maintains its natural pink color and the fat appears white or yellow. However, if the bacon has turned brown or grey with hints of green or blue, it has already spoiled. This change in color is caused by a chemical reaction in the meat due to excessive exposure to air.

Why is turkey bacon dark?

Turkey bacon is dark because most brands use a combination of light and dark meat from various parts of the turkey to achieve the marbled appearance similar to traditional bacon, even though some brands claim to use only thigh or breast meat.

How long is turkey good in the fridge?

Turkey is good in the fridge for 3 to 4 days, according to the USDA. It is recommended to keep it refrigerated at 40°F or below. Bacterial growth is slowed but not completely stopped by refrigeration. If you want to store turkey for a longer period, it can be frozen for 3 to 4 months. While frozen leftovers are safe indefinitely, they may lose moisture and flavor if stored in the freezer for extended periods of time.

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