How to Tell if Anchovies are Bad?

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Do you ever wonder how to tell if anchovies are bad? Anchovies are a type of fish that is used in many recipes. If they have gone bad, there will be signs such as an off-putting smell and/or mold on the container.


Did you know that consuming bad anchovies can cause great harm to your health.? Anchovies are marine fish high in macronutrients the body needs most.

However, to get the benefits, you need to avoid bad anchovies. The difficult task comes when choosing the best anchovies and leaving the bad ones.

This article outlines the best ways on how to tell anchovies are bad.

Here are 4 ways you can tell anchovies are bad

1. If the color of the anchovy is blue or dark

Fresh anchovies are the best ones experts recommend for your diet. Preferably, it would be good if you are very careful when choosing anchovies as freshness is the main way on how to tell anchovies are bad.

Fresh anchovies should be silvery in color. However, whenever you find the anchovy’s color is either dark or blue, it’s a clear indication the anchovy isn’t fresh. When in the market, don’t purchase it or discard it when you have it in your home.

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2. The smell

When determining if an anchovy is good or bad, the smell of the anchovy should be a key component. A fresh and good anchovy shouldn’t have any nasty smell or strange odor.

When you notice the anchovy you have has a peculiar odor, the anchovy has begun rotting or not fresh. A rotten anchovy is not suitable for your health; thus, you need to discard it away.

3. You can check for the expiry date of the jarred anchovies

When you opt for the jarred anchovies, you need to be very careful to check for the expiry date. Once you realize the jarred anchovies are past their expiry dates, then you should consider them bad.

When packing the anchovies in the jar, the companies usually calculate the time the anchovies will remain in good condition. Thus, those past the expiry date will need to discard them, as they are not conducive to your health.

4. Buildup of molds

The buildup of molds on the anchovy is a clear indication of a bad anchovy. Fresh anchovies should be clear silver in color. Thus, it’s essential to check for any growth apart from the silvery color on the anchovies.

Once there is some molds growth, it’s an indication that the anchovy has decayed or rot.

The rotting or decaying of anchovy is a clear indication of a bad one. These conditions can result from improper storage or handling.

How to store Anchovies?

To avoid any problems, store your anchovies properly by keeping them in the fridge or freezer and checking their expiration date before using them.

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Final Thoughts

It’s important to use your smelling and observing senses to identify the best anchovy for your diet. Remember, anchovy that has gone bad isn’t good for your health; thus, it’ll be preferable if you didn’t include them in your diet.

You can follow the above ways to understand how you can tell that anchovies are bad.

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