Last Updated on July 9, 2023 by Shari Mason
Have you ever noticed that the texture of cooked chicken can sometimes feel slimy?
While this may be off-putting, it doesn’t necessarily mean the chicken is bad. The chicken may still be safe to eat if it doesn’t have a foul odor. So why is chicken slimy but smells fine?
It’s essential to understand why chicken can sometimes become slimy and how to handle and store it to prevent potential health risks properly.
What Causes Chicken To Become Slimy?
Chicken can become slimy due to bacteria, specifically pseudomonas, which thrive in low temperatures and high humidity. This bacteria can cause the chicken to develop a slimy texture, which can be off-putting to many people.
While it is not uncommon for a raw chicken to have a slimy texture, it is essential to note that slimy or sticky chicken should not be consumed.
“I was eating in a Chinese restaurant downtown. There was a dish called Mother and Child Reunion. It’s chicken and eggs. And I said, I gotta use that one.”– Paul Simon, American Musician
This bacteria can cause food poisoning, leading to symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
How To Tell If Slimy Chicken Has Gone Bad Even If It Smells Fine?
- Check the color: If the chicken  appears gray or has a yellowish tint, it may be a sign that it has gone bad.
- Check for odor: Even if the chicken doesn’t have a foul smell if it has an off odor or smells sour, it’s best to err on the side of caution and toss it.
- Check the texture: If the chicken feels slimy, it’s probably gone bad, and you should not consume it.
- Check the packaging: If the chicken has been sitting in its juices or has a lot of liquid in the packaging, it may have gone bad.
- Use a food thermometer: If you are still unsure, you can use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of the chicken. The safe temperature for chicken is 165°F (74°C). If it doesn’t reach this temperature, it’s best to discard it.
Ways To Prevent Chicken From Becoming Slimy In The First Place
- Proper Storage: Store raw chicken in the refrigerator or freezer, and always separate it from other foods to avoid cross-contamination .
- Cook It Thoroughly: Cooking chicken to the correct internal temperature kills any harmful bacteria and reduces the risk of foodborne illness.
- Use It Within Its Expiration Date: Check the expiration date on the chicken package and use it before it expires to avoid spoilage.
- Don’t Wash Raw Chicken: Washing raw chicken can spread bacteria to other surfaces in the kitchen, increasing the risk of foodborne illness.
- Keep It Dry: Pat the chicken dry with paper towels before cooking to remove excess moisture, which can promote bacterial growth.
Alternative Uses For Slimy Chicken
- Use it for chicken stock: You can use the slimy chicken to make flavorful chicken stock. Add the chicken to a pot of water with vegetables and herbs, and simmer for a few hours. Strain out the solids, and you’ll have a tasty chicken stock.
- Feed it to your pets: If you have pets, you can feed the slimy chicken to them. Make sure to cook it thoroughly and remove any bones.
- Use it as fertilizer: Chicken is an excellent nitrogen source, making it a good fertilizer for plants. Bury the slimy chicken in your garden or compost pile and let it decompose.
- Dispose of it properly: If none of the above options appeal to you, dispose of the slimy chicken properly. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and put it in a sealed bag before disposing it in the trash.
How long does chicken last in the fridge?
Raw chicken can last in the fridge for 1-2 days, while cooked chicken lasts 3-4 days. It is essential to store chicken properly in airtight containers or tightly wrapped in plastic wrap to prevent contamination and keep it fresh for as long as possible.
It is also recommended to use a food thermometer to ensure that chicken is cooked to a safe internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) to reduce the risk of foodborne illness.
Can you eat chicken with freezer burn?
Technically, chicken with freezer burn is safe to eat if it has been stored correctly and has not been frozen for too long. However, the quality and taste of the chicken may be compromised.
Freezer burn occurs when moisture in the chicken evaporates, leaving dry spots on the surface of the meat. This can cause a chewy texture and a slightly off flavor.
Trimming away any areas with freezer burn is generally recommended before cooking or consuming the chicken.
Slimy chicken is not safe to eat, even if it smells fine. This sliminess is a sign of bacterial growth and can lead to food poisoning if consumed.
To prevent the chicken from becoming slimy in the first place, it is essential to store it properly, cook it thoroughly, and consume it within a reasonable timeframe.
If you are unsure about the safety of your chicken, it is best to err on the side of caution and dispose of it rather than risk foodborne illness.
If you have slimy chicken you don’t feel comfortable eating, consider using it for alternative purposes, such as pet food or compost, rather than letting it go to waste.
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