If you’ve ever found yourself contemplating whether or not you should toss a 4-year-old bottle of Worcestershire sauce, this is for you.
One of the most common/frequent food questions I receive from friends and family members alike is this: How do I know if ______ has gone bad?
Despite the fact that my job entails cooking food, eating food, staring at food, and talking about food pretty much every waking moment of my existence, I am not a good person to pose this particular inquiry to. Regardless of what the food item in question is, my response is typically always the same: Uh… does it look bad? More importantly, does it smell bad? I don’t know, maybe taste a little bit? I’m the person that’s going to always challenge the expiration date on the package with a smell check. If there’s mold on something, I just trim the offensive chunk off and keep going. In regards to food safety, I’m not the most astringent person you’ll ever meet. And while I know that’s probably terrifying to some, let me just say—I have only ever experienced food poisoning twice in my life, once from a grocery store I’ll leave unnamed’s sushi and once from fast food. So clearly, I can’t be that disgusting (unless you consider occasionally feeding oneself grocery store sushi and fast food disgusting).
I mention this because the question that came up in a recent staff meeting—Does hot sauce go bad? Naturally, my answer was, Um, I think hot sauce lasts forever. But then, in digging a bit deeper for a valid answer, we happened upon what might be the most impressive display of sheer internet genius ever… DoesItGoBad.com. The URL says it all, it’s a site dedicated exclusively to figuring out the mysteries surrounding your food’s potential to rot. And now, whenever one of my trusting loved ones hits me with a food spoilage question, I can just send them here, to DoesItGoBad.com! Despite the fact that we have plenty of factually sound, USDA-approved food safety content on this very site of which I am the editor, DoesItGoBad.com is really catchy to say. And I’d be a damned liar if I tried to pretend otherwise.
Not sure if your chocolate syrup has gone bad? DoesItGoBad.com!
What about vanilla beans? DoesItGoBad.com!
Does Jello even go bad?? Does.It.Go.Bad.Dot.Com!
According to the site’s incredibly concise “about” section, DoesItGoBad.com exists to provide “information about when (or if) a particular product will expire or will be unfit for consumption.” It’s a seemingly simple mission, but incredibly serviceable. (P.S. If you were wondering, hot sauce lasts a long time… but apparently not “forever.”) The site’s “contact” page reveals that the (assumed) mastermind behind DoesItGoBad.com is someone by the name Peter Johnson—kudos to you, Mr. Johnson.
Now, I will note, I cannot actually speak to the credibility of any of the information provided on DoesItGoBad.com, but all the same, it’s a million dollar idea.