Kale is one of the most popular vegetables right now.
It’s easy to grow in your backyard and it keeps well for up to two weeks once harvested. It’s also a great source of vitamins A and C.
But like any other vegetable, kale can go bad.
Here’s how to tell if kale is bad so you don’t waste money on food you shouldn’t consume.
How do you know if kale is bad?
There are many ways to tell if kale is bad.
Some people say “bad” just means “not as good as it used to be” while others say “bad” means “no longer edible”.
But regardless of what someone says, there are a few things you can look out for when trying to determine if kale is still good to eat.
The leaves may have turned yellow or brown.
The leaves may have lost their shape or started to wilt.
The leaves may have a strong scent that smells sour or off.
The leaves may have an unappealing texture (for example, they might be mushy).
The leaves may have mold growing on them.
What are the signs that kale is bad?
Before you start throwing away kale, however, take a quick look around your kitchen.
The most obvious sign that kale is bad is if its leaves start turning yellow or brown.
This could mean that the plant is suffering from nutrient deficiency or that it’s been exposed to too much light.
Another thing to look out for is if the leaves begin to wilt or shrivel up.
This is another sign that the plant is under stress or nutrient deficiency.
You can also notice this by looking closely at the veins on the leaves.
They may appear blackened or dried up.
Is there a certain smell that indicates kale has gone bad?
Another way to tell if kale is bad is to smell it.
If you find that the leaves have an unpleasant odor, then this is a clear indication that the plant is no longer healthy and that it should be discarded.
On the other hand, if the leaves have a pleasant aroma, then they’re probably fine to eat.
How long does kale usually last before it goes bad?
Kale tends to stay fresh for about 2-3 days after harvesting.
After that, it starts losing nutrients and becomes less flavorful.
Once it reaches this point, you can safely toss it out.
However, if you keep it in the fridge, it will likely last for another day or so beyond that.
What happens if you eat bad kale?
While eating kale that’s past its prime isn’t necessarily going to kill you, it can cause some serious health problems.
For starters, kale is rich in antioxidants which help fight cancer and inflammation.
Eating bad kale can reduce your body’s ability to defend itself against these diseases.
In addition, consuming large quantities of kale can lead to constipation because it doesn’t contain enough fiber.
Finally, eating bad kale can increase your risk of developing kidney stones since it lacks calcium.
Is it safe to cook with bad kale?
Yes! Just remember that cooking kale reduces its nutritional value significantly.
That said, you can still add it to soups, salads, stir-fries, and stews without worrying about damaging your health.
Can bad kale make you sick?
No! While consuming kale that’s past its prime won’t make you sick, it can still cause digestive issues.
This is because kale contains high levels of oxalic acid, a chemical compound that can irritate your stomach.
As a result, you may experience nausea, heartburn, bloating, cramping, diarrhea, and/or vomiting.
If you suspect that you’ve eaten bad kale, consult your doctor immediately.
What should you do if you think your kale is bad?
If you think that you’ve consumed bad kale, the best course of action is to throw it out.
Don’t try to hide it from yourself or anyone else.
If you can’t bear to throw it out, put it in the trash bin instead.
Otherwise, just wait until the next time you have access to good kale before eating it again.
Is it possible to salvage bad kale?
Unfortunately, there’s nothing you can do to save bad kale.
If you’ve already eaten it, there’s no reason to worry about getting sick from it.
Just throw it out and move onto something else that hasn’t gone bad yet.
How can you tell if kale is still good?
You can tell if kale is still good to eat by checking the following areas:
The leaves should be green and vibrant.
The leaves should have a fresh, crisp smell.
The leaves should have a firm texture.
The leaves shouldn’t turn yellow or brown.
The leaves shouldn’t shrivel up or wilt.
The leaves shouldn’t have a foul odor.
The leaves shouldn’t have mold growing on them.
Is it safe to freeze kale?
Yes, but only if you pick it early in the morning before it starts to get hot.
Also, make sure that you wash your kale thoroughly to remove any dirt or debris before freezing it.