How to Tell If Salmon Is Bad

Hey there, seafood lovers! Are you a big fan of salmon but often wonder how to tell if it’s gone bad? No worries, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll give you some tips on how to determine if your salmon is still fresh or if it’s time to throw it away.

Why Is It Important to Check?

Before we dive into the tips, let’s first discuss why it’s crucial to check if your salmon is still good. Consuming bad salmon can lead to food poisoning, which can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and other uncomfortable symptoms. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so let’s learn how to spot the signs of bad salmon.

Smell Test

One of the most apparent signs of bad salmon is its smell. Fresh salmon has a slightly seaweed-like smell, while bad salmon smells sour or pungent, indicating that the fish has started to spoil. If you notice a strong odor coming from your salmon, it’s best to discard it immediately.


Another way to tell if your salmon is bad is by examining its appearance. Fresh salmon meat should be firm and bright in color, ranging from pink to orange. If the flesh appears grayish instead, it’s a sign that the salmon is no longer fresh. Additionally, if the salmon’s skin appears slimy or has a cloudy film over it, it’s time to toss it out.


When it comes to texture, fresh salmon should feel firm and have a smooth surface. If you press down on the flesh and it leaves an indentation, it’s a sign that the fish is no longer fresh. Moreover, if the meat feels mushy or slimy, it’s best to get rid of it.

Expiration Date

Checking the expiration date is another way to determine if your salmon is still good. If the date has passed, it’s best to err on the side of caution and not consume the fish. The expiration date indicates the last day that the salmon is guaranteed to be fresh, so it’s best not to take any chances.


How you store your salmon can also affect its freshness. Salmon should be kept at a temperature between 32°F to 38°F to remain fresh. If it’s left out at room temperature for too long, bacteria can grow, causing the fish to go bad. Therefore, it’s crucial to store your salmon in the fridge or freezer as soon as possible after purchasing it.


Cooking your salmon thoroughly can also help determine if it’s bad. When the fish is cooked, it should be flaky yet moist and have a mild, slightly sweet taste. If it has a strong, unpleasant taste or smells overly fishy, it’s a sign that the salmon is no longer good.

Salmon Varieties

It’s also good to note that different varieties of salmon have unique characteristics. For example, sockeye salmon has a deep red color, while king salmon has a more orange hue. However, regardless of the variety, the signs of bad salmon remain the same.


In conclusion, there are several ways to tell if salmon is bad. Checking for a sour or pungent smell, examining the appearance and texture, looking at the expiration date, storing the salmon properly, and cooking it thoroughly are all ways to ensure that your salmon is still fresh. Remember, it’s better to throw away bad salmon than to risk getting food poisoning.


Here are some quick tips to help you keep your salmon fresh: – Buy salmon from a reputable source- Store salmon in an airtight container or vacuum-sealed bag – Freeze salmon if you don’t plan on using it within a few days – Always cook salmon to an internal temperature of 145°F

See You Next Time!

Thanks for reading our article on how to tell if salmon is bad. We hope that you found these tips helpful and that you can now enjoy your salmon worry-free. Stay tuned for more informative articles on all things food and nutrition!