How Long Does Fresh Mozzarella Last

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When it comes to mozzarella, the question about how long it can last depends on certain factors like how the cheese is stored in your fridge and how much leftover mozzarella cheese you have at hand.

You may also be wondering the extent and the difference in shelf-life between soft and hard cheeses. Therefore, it is essential that you learn a thing or two about how long any cheese can last when stored.

This article is all about mozzarella cheese, from freezing it to defrosting it when you want to use the cheese.

So, how long does fresh mozzarella last?

Keeping any cheese properly is essential to increasing its shelf-life. Almost all cheeses are made from milk that has been carefully and adequately spoiled.

Unlike many of the hard cheeses, its storage life is usually very limited. Therefore, it does not make sense for you to buy extra fresh mozzarella that you will not use almost immediately.  

However, when it comes to storing fresh mozzarella cheese, specific procedures are involved to ensure that the cheese does not lose its flavor and texture. Fresh mozzarella is certainly not aged like most cheeses. This means its shelf-life is usually shorter.

Fresh mozzarella will last up to a week, and this depends heavily on how the cheese was stored after opening the plastic wrap. After a week, the cheese will lose its flavor, texture and it will also have a foul smell which means it will not be suitable for consumption.

The storage time of fresh mozzarella cheese is usually shorter, and this is influenced by the date of manufacture of the cheese, which is usually between three and four weeks. Before consuming any form of mozzarella cheese, it is essential to check its quality.

When stored properly in the freezer, fresh mozzarella cheese will last for over six months, provided the temperatures in the freezer is constantly at 0 degrees. In any case, there is mold growth on your cheese discarding it is the only option to avoid food poisoning.

How do you tell if mozzarella cheese has gone bad?

One of the significant signs that show your mozzarella cheese is not suitable for consumption is when you see any form of mold on the cheese’s external parts. For people with a low immune system eating cheese that has gone bad will mainly cause gastrointestinal diseases.

Different types of bacteria will cause various abnormalities to your body, depending on your body’s immune system. If you notice any form of mold on your cheese, it is better to discard it than consume, as they say, better safe than sorry.

Note that the cheese, when stored in airtight packages and adequately refrigerated, will stay for over six months before going bad. However, when opened, it lowers the time to almost one month.

What signs show that your mozzarella has gone bad?

Bitter taste- mostly when you take the cheese out of the freezer and taste it, there will be an unusually sour taste that is disgusting. When used for culinary purposes at this stage, the cheese will destroy the flavor of your dish. Discarding it is the only option you have here.

Foul smell- immediately you take the cheese out from the freezer and snip it from the plastic wraps or freezer bags, and the smell that hits you is unpleasant, its probably time for you to take this mozzarella straight to the trash bin.

Like many other kinds of cheese, whether soft or hard cheese, mozzarella does not have a robust smell. Its aroma is usually mild and slightly light.

There will be no significant side effects even when you use it with the unpleasant smell, but it will definitely spoil the salads and any food you are preparing using this cheese. So, any sour smell from the cheese signifies that it has gone bad.

Check the date of manufacture- in most of the packages in which mozzarella is initially stored. You will find out that it has been written ‘use by.’ These dates are usually not indications that the cheese is safe for use as the cheese can stay for longer days when properly refrigerated.

Basically, the dates are used to show the best days before use when the cheese will still have its freshness and the optimum moisture retained before it begins to lose its texture and flavor.

Visible mold- at this stage, there are no explanations required because this is something that you can see pretty clearly just by looking at the cheese. Throwing out the cheese is the only alternative here.

Some people tend to shave or trim the mold of the cheese’s surface. This is not a good idea because most bacteria are invisible, and you never know if the whole cheese is affected. The best will be to take it to the trash immediately.

The bag is bloated- bloating is also another sign that your cheese may have gone bad. This happens mainly when the cheese has stayed too long in the freezer, and the dates for use have gone. However, you can still look inside just to confirm whether your cheese is safe for use or not.

How do you store fresh mozzarella cheese?

Maybe you purchased extra mozzarella cheese, and you are probably wondering how you will store this leftover cheese after using what you needed. Mozzarella cheese has very unique features like for instance; it is one type of cheese that is usually packaged in liquid.

The best is always to use this cheese when still fresh because it is bursting with flavors. Generally, fresh mozzarella cheese will always be packaged in a whey container, which is primarily to keep it moist and fresh.

Sometimes you will find this cheese packaged in airtight bags. These mozzarella cheese versions should always be stored submerged in a bowl of cold water then kept in the refrigerator.

Storing mozzarella cheese in a plastic wrap

This is one of the most straightforward and simple methods you can use when storing mozzarella cheese. It usually comes out best when the cheese being stored is huge or large.

This then means that any small mozzarella cheese should be stored in a bowl of cold water, after which you freeze the cheese.

Like I said in this method, storing the cheese is very direct. The only thing you need to do to store this cheese is by squeezing the plastic wrap in which the mozzarella cheese was initially placed.

After all the air has come out of the plastic wrap, seal the wrap tightly to prevent any air pockets from gaining entrance into the wrap. This technique will ensure that no air goes into the plastic and the cheese retains its freshness, flavor, and quality for a few days.

I don’t know about you, but I like storing fresh mozzarella in freezer bags when using this method. The benefits of freezer bags are that they are reusable, and when storing the cheese, you do not have to wrap the cheese like when you are using plastic wraps. Well, it all comes down to preference.

How about storing mozzarella in liquid?

Often, you will find fresh mozzarella cheese packed in liquid form, and you can still use the same method when storing fresh mozzarella.

Nevertheless, when it comes to storing fresh cheese, various methods are employed, all with the same idea of keeping this cheese as fresh as possible. Other people always submerge their cheese in plain water, while others prefer submerging the cheese in brine water, usually saltwater.

Which method is better than the other? According to my little research, all these techniques will work for you, and it all comes down to what you desire. Either way, I prefer using the manufacturer’s idea of storage, and this is by replicating how the cheese was initially stored.

The first step is always checking how the cheese was initially stored, whether in saltwater or plain water, by either tasting the water or checking the ingredients list.

Depending on your findings, prepare the liquid, either plain or brine water, then seal the container from which you placed the cheese. After that, place the mozzarella either in brine water or plain water, then store it in the refrigerator.

The next step is to make sure that you change the water that the mozzarella cheese is submerged in daily such that the freshness and quality are retained. This method will keep your cheese fresh for about 2-3 days at most. After this, the cheese should be used because it may begin to go bad.

If you decide to go with the brine solution, you will have to use one tablespoon of salt, and this goes for every cup of water added to the bowl. If you want the cheese to be saltier, then add more salt to the water.

Remember that when the salt solution is too much, the shelf-life of your cheese is also prolonged. However, this will mess with your mozzarella cheese’s texture and flavor by changing its original flavor.

If you plan on using your fresh mozzarella cheese from the refrigerator, remove it an hour earlier before serving it. One thing that you should not do with fresh mozzarella cheese is freezing it. This will destroy its texture and flavor.

Bottomline

Every other type of food will go bad when not correctly stored, and this is the same case when it comes to mozzarella cheese. You do not need to purchase extra mozzarella cheese from the grocery store if you do not use it completely.

Nevertheless, proper storage is essential should you have extra cheese. Therefore, consider following the steps above for a prolonged shelf-life of your mozzarella cheese.

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