Are you a fan of blue cheese? Do you love to add it to your salads, burgers, or sandwiches?
If so, you may have wondered how long you can leave it out before it goes bad. Blue cheese is a delicious and versatile cheese, but it’s also a perishable food that needs to be stored properly.
In this article, we’ll explore the different ways to store blue cheese and how long it can sit out before it spoils. Whether you’re a cheese lover or just looking for some food safety tips, keep reading to learn more about blue cheese storage and shelf life.
How Long Can Blue Cheese Sit Out?
Blue cheese is a type of cheese that is loved by many for its unique flavor and texture. However, it is important to note that blue cheese is a perishable food that needs to be stored properly to avoid spoilage.
According to food safety guidelines, blue cheese should not be left out at room temperature for more than two hours. This is because the warm temperatures encourage the growth of harmful bacteria, which can cause foodborne illnesses.
If you accidentally leave your blue cheese out for more than two hours, it is best to discard it. Even if it looks and smells fine, it may still be unsafe to eat.
To ensure the safety and quality of your blue cheese, it is best to store it in the refrigerator. When storing blue cheese, make sure to wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent oxygen from reaching the cheese and causing bacteria growth.
It is also important to check the expiration date before buying blue cheese and to use it within 7 to 10 days after opening the wedge. If you have leftover blue cheese, store it in an airtight container or freezer bag in the refrigerator.
What Is Blue Cheese?
Blue cheese is a type of cheese that is characterized by the presence of blue or green mold veins that run through it. This mold is created by the introduction of Penicillium cultures during the cheese-making process.
The mold gives blue cheese its distinct flavor, which is often described as sharp, tangy, and slightly salty. The texture of blue cheese can vary from soft and creamy to crumbly and firm, depending on the specific type of blue cheese.
Blue cheese can be made from cow’s milk, sheep’s milk, or goat’s milk, and it is often aged for several months to develop its flavor. Some popular types of blue cheese include Roquefort, Gorgonzola, and Stilton.
While blue cheese is a delicious addition to many dishes, it is important to handle and store it properly to avoid spoilage and foodborne illnesses. By following proper storage guidelines and using your senses to determine if the cheese has gone bad, you can enjoy this tasty treat without any worries.
Proper Storage Of Blue Cheese
To properly store blue cheese, it is recommended to keep it in the refrigerator at a temperature below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. This will help slow down the spoiling process and keep the cheese fresh for a longer period of time.
When storing blue cheese, it is important to ensure that the cheese can still breathe. You can either use the foil it often comes in or opt for cheese wrap, wax paper, or aluminum foil. Place the wrapped blue cheese in a freezer bag or airtight container, but don’t squeeze out the extra air.
If you’re planning to enjoy your blue cheese at a special gathering with your family, you can store it in a cheese grotto at room temperature on the counter. A cheese grotto is a cheese storage container that imitates the protective, high-humidity environment of a “cheese cave” in your kitchen. Blue cheese stored this way will last only a couple of days or over 7 to 10 days. However, storing blue cheese at room temperature allows the flavor and texture of the cheese to be ready to be eaten anytime—you don’t need to let your cheese sit out at room temperature for an hour before serving it.
To use a cheese grotto, open the grotto and put the clay brick humidifier or moistened brick at the bottom of the container. This brick keeps the cheese at optimal humidity levels. Then, place your blue cheese block or blue cheese wedge on the breathable panel. Make sure that the panel is thoroughly clean. Close the pull-down door and put the grotto at room temperature on the counter. Consume the cheese for about 7 to 10 days.
It is important to inspect blue cheese for signs of spoilage before consuming it, even if it has been stored properly. If there’s unintentional mold growing on the surface, the creamy part has changed color to pink, brown, or yellow, or if it smells strongly off or ammonia-like, discard it immediately. You can also toss it for quality purposes if it has hardened, dried out, or if its taste is too strong for your liking.
How Long Can Blue Cheese Sit Out At Room Temperature?
It is not recommended to leave blue cheese out at room temperature for more than two hours. This is because the warm temperatures encourage the growth of harmful bacteria, which can cause foodborne illnesses. If the temperature in the room is higher than 90 degrees Fahrenheit, blue cheese should be put back in the fridge after one hour.
Even if blue cheese is left unrefrigerated for less than two hours, it is important to inspect it for signs of spoilage such as mold, a bitter taste, or strange odors before consuming it. Additionally, leaving blue cheese unrefrigerated for more than four hours is ill-advised as it can spoil quickly at warmer temperatures.
To keep your blue cheese safe and fresh, it is always best to store it in the refrigerator. Blue cheese will stay in its best form at temperatures below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Make sure to wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent oxygen from reaching the cheese and causing bacteria growth.
If you plan to serve blue cheese at a special gathering with your family, then the best method to store it is in a cheese grotto at room temperature on the counter. Cheese grottos are designed to imitate the protective, high-humidity environment of a “cheese cave” in your kitchen. Blue cheese stored this way will last only a couple of days or over 7 to 10 days.
Signs That Blue Cheese Has Gone Bad
Blue cheese is a delicious cheese that can be enjoyed in many ways, but it is important to know when it has gone bad. Here are some signs that your blue cheese has spoiled:
1. Smell: Blue cheese has a strong, distinct odor, but it should not smell like ammonia. If your blue cheese smells like ammonia, it is a sign that it has gone bad.
2. Color: The white part of the cheese should be creamy white in color. If you notice pink, brown or green colors on the cheese, it is a sign that it has started to spoil.
3. Texture: Blue cheese should have a slightly crumbly texture and may be slightly sticky, but it should never be slimy or fuzzy. If you notice any sliminess or fuzziness on the cheese, it is a sign that it has gone bad.
4. Taste: Blue cheese has a strong taste, but if it tastes too strong or bites your tongue when you take a bite, it is a sign that it has gone bad.
If you notice any of these signs on your blue cheese, it is best to discard it to avoid any foodborne illnesses. It is always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to food safety.
Tips For Preventing Spoilage Of Blue Cheese
Here are some tips to help prevent spoilage of blue cheese:
1. Store blue cheese in the refrigerator: Blue cheese should always be stored in the refrigerator to keep it fresh and safe to eat. The cold temperature of the refrigerator slows down the growth of bacteria, which can cause spoilage.
2. Wrap blue cheese properly: When storing blue cheese, make sure to wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. This will prevent oxygen from reaching the cheese and causing bacteria growth.
3. Use blue cheese within 7 to 10 days of opening: Once you open the wedge of blue cheese, it is best to use it within 7 to 10 days. This will ensure that it stays fresh and safe to eat.
4. Don’t leave blue cheese out at room temperature: Blue cheese should not be left out at room temperature for more than two hours. This is because warm temperatures encourage the growth of harmful bacteria, which can cause foodborne illnesses.
5. Check for signs of spoilage: Before eating blue cheese, always check for signs of spoilage such as a strong ammonia smell, discoloration, slimy texture or fuzzy mold. If you notice any of these signs, discard the cheese immediately.
By following these tips, you can help prevent spoilage of your blue cheese and ensure that it stays fresh and safe to eat for as long as possible.
Creative Ways To Use Blue Cheese In Recipes.
Blue cheese is a versatile ingredient that can add a unique flavor and texture to a variety of recipes. Here are some creative ways to use blue cheese in your cooking:
1. Soups: Adding blue cheese to soups can give them a creamy and tangy flavor. Try adding a small amount of crumbled blue cheese to a hearty vegetable soup for an extra punch of flavor.
2. Burgers: Melt crumbled blue cheese on top of a burger for a delicious and indulgent treat. Our favorite recipe is the Moody Blue Slider, made with delicately smoked Moody Blue® cheese.
3. Dips: Blue cheese can be easily turned into a cheesy dip that’s perfect for entertaining. Try our Pear & Buttermilk Blue® Dip, which incorporates Original Buttermilk Blue® cheese along with five other simple ingredients.
4. Desserts: Blue cheese may not be the first thing that comes to mind when making desserts or sweet appetizers, but its tangy and savory flavor can add depth to a variety of dishes. Try making Blue Cheese, Bacon, and Candied Pecan Puff Pastry Bites for a unique and flavorful dessert.
5. Grilled Cheese: Any cheese can be melted in a grilled cheese sandwich, including blue cheese! Our Buttermilk Blue® Melt recipe includes zucchini and tomatoes for a new spin on this classic comfort food.
6. Salads: The creamy taste and texture of blue cheese is perfect on top of fresh, crispy lettuce. Try adding crumbled blue cheese to a Chicken BLT Salad for an extra layer of creaminess.