Food Preservation

How Long Does Cured Meat Last? Does Cured Meat Go Bad?

In this article, you will know the answer to the query “How Long Does Cured Meat Last? Does Cured Meat Go Bad?“.

Meat that has been preserved with salt, nitrates, or other preservatives is called cured meat.

It is important to preserve and cure meat in order to prevent spoilage.

“Curing” actually means killing bacteria that can cause illness through fermentation or other methods to prevent the meat from spoiling.

In this article, we’ll discuss how to store your cured meats, how long they last in the fridge, how to tell if they’ve gone bad, and how to prepare them.

What is Cured Meat?

Those who enjoy eating meat, including butchers, foodies, and foodies, know what cured meats are.

Salt-cured meat is a type of processed or preserved meat that does not require refrigeration for extended periods of time.

Salami, prosciutto, prosciutto cotto, prosciutto serrano, and bacon are some types.

Pork is usually used in cured meats (although beef or other meat can also be used).

It starts out as a mixture of fat and lean meat before it is cooked.

In order to prevent bacteria from growing on the meat, it is subjected to various processes.

Nitrite-curing is the most common method for inhibiting bacterial growth and creating an environment with significantly lower water activity than raw meat, using salt and sodium nitrate (or other curing salts).

You can enjoy this salty, cured meat without having to worry about it going bad for weeks or months.

Several dishes can be created using cured meat, such as ham and eggs for breakfast or sandwiches.

How to Store Cured Meat?

There is nothing better than cured meats such as ham, bacon, and beef jerky.

Did you know that these meats must also be stored properly?

In order to store cured meats for a long time, they are often kept in a refrigerator or freezer.

Before consumption, they can also be placed on shelves and aged for one week.

When keeping your cured meats, make sure they are not near onions or other foods with strong odors.

It is important to store your cured meat in a cool place away from the sun and other sources of heat in order to keep it in the best shape possible.

By doing so, the meat will be protected from spoilage and will not dry out too fast.

How Long Does Cured Meat Last? Does Cured Meat Go Bad?

It’s likely that you’ve wondered how long cured meats like bacon, ham, and salami last.

Unlike fresh meat and eggs, cured meats can last a surprisingly long time in the refrigerator or freezer.

While frozen food doesn’t spoil as quickly as fresh food (since most bacteria have been killed during processing), every package still has an expiration date.

It might not taste good if your salami is over six months old when you make your sandwich.

Meat that has been cured is generally recommended to be frozen for one year, but it may last longer.

Keeping cured meats in the refrigerator can extend their shelf life to two weeks.

Wrap them tightly or cover them loosely with a plastic bag before storing them in the refrigerator – this will keep moisture out and prevent spoilage.

In other words, if you bought your salami sandwich ingredients more than five days ago, make sure you keep them in the refrigerator to prevent them from spoiling.

How to Tell if Cured Meat is Bad?

The advantages of cured meat over fresh meat include its affordability and convenience.

When purchased in bulk, it can last much longer and be less expensive.

The truth is that many people mistakenly believe cured meat can only be kept for a short time before it goes bad.

As long as salt or nitrate solutions have been used to adequately preserve cured meat, it is safe indefinitely.

There is also a risk that some cured meats can be a breeding ground for bacteria.

As a result, it’s crucial to inspect all cured meat thoroughly before eating or using it. This is especially true if the meat has been left out on your countertop for an extended period without being refrigerated.

If you suspect that your cured meat is bad or spoiled, here are a few signs:

  • If it smells sour, funky, or rotten.
  • When there is mold on the product’s surface.
  • There is a mushy and wet texture to the meat.
  • If the product has bulges in its flesh or looks slimy on its surface.
  • There has been a drastic change in the color of the cured meat, such as from pink to brownish-yellow.
  • A knife won’t cut through it without encountering resistance (meat should slice easily).

The product should be discarded if any of these signs are present.

Proactively responding to these signs is the best course of action.

It’s better to be safe than sorry if you’re unsure whether meat has spoiled.


A cured meat product is not immune to spoilage just because it has been cured.

You will be able to store and handle your cured meats much longer if you follow these simple guidelines.

We have outlined all of the details below for your convenience, but feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

How Long Does Cured Meat Last? Does Cured Meat Go Bad? (Recipe)


15 minutes


15 minutes


30 minutes


  • Cured meat
  • Air-tight containers or Ziplock bags
  • Labels and markers


  • Read the guide thoroughly to learn how long it lasts.
  • Label your container with the content and date and keep track of how much you’re using!
  • Make sure to store in an airtight container in a cool, dark place (pantry or fridge).
  • If frozen, thaw in the fridge before use. Always check for signs of spoilage before use.


Ayub Khan

Ayub Khan is an accomplished culinary author with a passion for cooking and 6 years of experience. His creative ideas and valuable tips inspire readers to explore new flavors and take their culinary skills to the next level.

Rehmat Dietitian

Rehmat is a certified food dietitian having experience of 10 years in reviewing and practicing on foods different aspects.

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