Courtesy of David R.
A Bachelor's Kitchen Guide
- If you can't tell the difference between your ice cubes and
your ice cream, it's time to throw BOTH out.
- Frozen foods that have become an integral part of the
defrosting problem in your freezer compartment will probably be
spoiled (or wrecked anyway) by the time you pry them out with a
In the Fridge:
- When something starts pecking its way out of the shell, the egg
is probably past its prime.
- Milk is spoiled when it starts to look like yogurt.
- Yogurt is spoiled when it starts to look like cottage
- Cottage cheese is spoiled when it starts to look like regular
- Regular cheese is nothing but spoiled milk anyway - if you can
dig down and still find something non-green, bon appetite!
- If opening the refrigerator door causes stray animals from a
three-block radius to congregate outside your house, toss the
- You know it is well beyond prime when you're tempted to discard
the Tupperware along with the food.
General Rule of Thumb
- Most food cannot be kept longer than the average life span of a
hamster. Keep a hamster in your refrigerator to gauge this.
On the Shelf:
- Any canned goods that have become the size or shape of a
softball should be disposed of... Very carefully.
- Fresh potatoes do not have roots, branches, or dense, leafy
The Gag Test
- Anything that makes you gag is spoiled (except for leftovers
from what you cooked for yourself last night).
- Sesame seeds and Poppy seeds are the only officially acceptable
"spots" that should be seen on the surface of any loaf of bread.
Fuzzy and hairy looking white or green growth areas are good
indications that your bread has turned into a pharmaceutical
laboratory experiment. You may wish to discard it at this time,
depending on your interest in pharmaceuticals.
- It is generally a good rule of thumb that cereal should be
discarded when it is two years or longer beyond the expiration
date, or when it will no longer fall out of the box by itself.
- Flour is spoiled when it wiggles, or things fly out when you
- Normally eternal, pretzels may be discarded if they can no
longer be picked up without falling apart. Otherwise, there's
nothing to stop you from eating a pretzel that the Pharaoh put down
only 4000 years ago.
- Raisins should not usually be harder than your teeth.
- It never spoils. However, if you can't chip off reasonable
amounts from the block, maybe another box is in order, as fresh
salt usually pours.
- Most spices cannot die, they just fade away. They will be fine
on your shelf, forever. Put them in your will.
- If your grandmother made it, it is probably still good.
- This is not a marketing ploy to encourage you to throw away
perfectly good food so that you'll spend more on groceries.
- Dry foods older than you are may be ready to replace.
- Perhaps you'd benefit by having a calendar in your