Eating Bad Fish

Fish are usually stored in a freezer or cooler full of ice to keep them fresh and last longer. But just like other meat, fish meat also spoils after a certain period. It will no longer be healthy or safe to consume when that happens.

To help you determine if a fish is rotten, I compiled some of the signs of spoiled fish in this guide.

A Must-Read: How Long Does Fish Last In The Freezer?

Check The Sell-By Date

Check its sell-by date before cooking the fish you bought from the market. You can usually see it on its packaging, so be vigilant when purchasing one.

If the sell-by date is past two days before cooking, you should dispose of it. Fish are not safe to consume two days after the sell-by date.

If you wish to make the fish last longer, keep it inside the freezer. Aside from that, dispose of raw fish past its use-by date.

Unlike the sell-by date, the use-by date means that the product is no longer safe to consume after the indicated date.

Inspecting The Fish Meat

When fish begin to spoil, you can observe their outer surface having a thin layer of slime and a wetter look. These characteristics are clear signs that the fish meat began to go wrong.

Entirely spoiled raw fish will have a thicker texture on meat and is slippery to the touch. Right after noticing the initial signs of spoilage, dispose of the product.

It is also worth noting that it will not show a slimy coating even after the cooked fish starts to spoil.

Another way to check if the raw fish went bad is by inspecting its color. Usually, fresh raw fish meat is white or light pink and has a thin, transparent liquid film.

When refrigerated fish stays uncooked for days and starts to spoil, its meat will look glossy, milk tone. The milky pats of the raw fish might also have gray-ish or blue.

If you cook your fish, it won’t show a milky color even if it has gone wrong. You can only use this method of identification of raw fish.

Smelling The Fish

Expect raw fish to smell fishy. But, when spoiled refrigerated fish gives off a strong, pungent smell, you have to discard the fish right away.

Checking Expired Salmon

Unlike most kinds of fish, salmon is popular for the thin white lines that distinguish the layers or flakes of their flesh. Such lines show that raw fish is still safe to eat and is fresh.

The salmon might be spoiled when you find that these white lines are gone or changed to a darker gray color.

Aside from the lines of its flesh, pressing the salmon for firmness is another way to determine if it has gone bad. Fresh salmon feels firm when touched.

On the other hand, spoiled raw salmon becomes squishy, unusually soft, and mush. Also, check for any discoloration on the salmon’s meat.

Compared to other kinds of fish, salmon develops discolorations when it spoils. Knowing this, inspect the fish meat for discolorations before buying or cooking.

Once you see any fish meat area not having the healthy pink color of salmon, the product might be expired.

Ways To Keep Fish Meat Fresh Longer

Here are some of the things that you can use to keep fish meat fresh for a more extended period:

Homebeast Fishing Bucket

For those people who love fishing, they will need the proper storage for the fish they catch. The reason behind it is to prevent the meat from losing freshness.

Homebeast Fishing Bucket is among the top options in this category, and it is now taking the market by storm.

It features a Thicken EVA, an environmentally friendly material that is corrosion and impact-resistant. This bucket boasts a filter mesh along with a high-quality zipper.

Because of these components, the fish are easier to see, preventing them from jumping out of the bucket.

MaisonV Reusable Silicone Food Storage Bags

Another way to delay fish spoilage is to use high-quality storage bags like MaisonV Reusable Silicone Food Storage Bags.

If you are not planning to cook raw fish you bought from the market yet, use these silicone food storage bags to keep them fresh for a more extended period.

Unlike other food storage bags, these airtight food containers have a leak-proof design that can extend the life of your food.

Xomoo Reusable Food Container Silicone Bag

If you want to ensure that the fish you buy stays fresh and safe to eat, use Xomoo Reusable Food Container Silicone Bag.

It is PVC-free, BPA-free, and does not contain latex. It means that it is safe to use and will not affect health.

SILIVO Food Storage Containers

SILIVO Food Storage Containers is another option you have to keep raw fish meat fresh for a longer time inside the freezer.

The container comes with a removable drain plate, making the product easy and convenient.

Besides fish, you can also use it to prolong the freshness of vegetables, fruits, meat, etc.

DAILY KISN Silicone Stretch Lids

For those who want to use a multi-functional cover to keep fish and left-over food fresh inside the refrigerator or freezer, the Silicone Stretch Lids of DAILY KISN are the best.

You can use it to cover fruits, bowls, glasses, and more. It keeps the food inside the containers leak-proof, and it is available in two colors.


In conclusion, knowing whether a raw fish became rotten or not is critical. It will help you avoid the dangers of eating spoiled fish and make wiser decisions when buying such meat.

Always inspect the raw fish before buying if it shows signs of spoilage are discussed earlier.

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