Category

Food Waste Tips

Food & Drink, Food Waste Tips

How to Tell if Milk is Off

sniff test for off milk
how to tell if milk is off

Want to know how to tell if milk is off?  Let me share with you the very best method so you’ll never unnecessarily waste a drop again.

I’ve talked before about expiration dates on eggs, and how to check to see if you can eat them past their date.  

But what about milk?  Food waste is a huge problem.  Particularly when it comes to milk.  Here in the UK, a huge one in six pints of milk is thrown away each year.  This is problematic because, in terms of carbon emissions, land use, water use, dairy milk has the biggest impact on the planet.  Wasting less milk where we can is therefore incredibly important.   

So, If your milk has reached its expiry date and you’ve still got some left then how do you tell if milk is off? Or if it is still safe to drink?  Do you sniff the carton to see how it smells?  If you do then what if I tell you then that you’ve been doing it all wrong?

Why The Carton Sniff Test Is Wrong

It’s true.  If you’ve been sniffing the carton/bottle then chances are unless the milk is definitely off, then you will have been getting a false picture of how the milk actually smells.  

Instead of the milk, you’ll actually have been getting a whiff of the horrible dried up bits of milk around the rim of the carton.  This may have perhaps caused you to bin the milk unnecessarily early.

My 91-year-old grandad has scant regard for expiration dates on food.  Want to know a true story? A little while ago he found a tin of tomatoes 10 years out of date in the back of his cupboard.  A lesser person might have put the can in the bin.  But no, not my grandad. Nope, he used the tomatoes to make them into tomato soup and ate it regardless.  And you know what?  He was perfectly fine! 

His rule for how to tell if milk is off is simple but dubious.  If he puts milk in his tea or coffee and it curdles then it’s off.  If not, then the milk is fine for consumption, regardless of the date on the carton.

I personally think my grandad’s milk testing method is a bit extreme.  I mean, who wants to potentially waste a perfectly good cup of tea?

So What Is The Best Method?

In actual fact, the best way to tell if milk is off or not is to pour a little bit of milk into a clean glass.  Then sniff the milk in the glass.  This gives you a much better idea of if the milk is off or not.

It’s fail-safe – you’ll never throw out perfectly good milk again!

Do you have any tips to reduce food waste?  Do share in the comments below! And if you’re thinking about switching to oat milk, then here’s my guide to the best oat milk.

Food & Drink, Food Waste Tips

How to Test If Eggs Are Fresh – A Simple, Failsafe Technique

egg freshness test

Want to know how to test if eggs are fresh?  Right this way!

I’ve got a really easy way to test if your eggs are fresh.  It’s a really handy tip to keep up your sleeve so that you can avoid binning perfectly edible eggs.

In our house, we always have eggs to hand.  Unfortunately, life happens and sometimes we don’t always manage to use up all of the eggs before they reach their best before date.  I used to throw them away when they got to this point, because, you know, that’s what the date on the box said.

egg fresh test

Now, as you know I hate food waste, and I was always really loathed to throw the unused eggs out, but what else could you do?  Well, when my other half and I first moved in together he showed me a great tip to test egg freshness, that I thought I’d share with you today:

How To Test If Eggs Are Fresh

old egg
An egg two weeks past it’s best before date.

To test if eggs are fresh simply take your egg and gently place it in a large glass of cold water. You’ll want to observe whether the egg sinks to the bottom or floats to the top.

egg glass water test
It sank so it’s safe to eat!

How To Tell If Your Egg is Fresh & Safe To Eat

The beauty of this test, is that it’s really easy to tell if your egg is fresh, and therefore safe to eat.

Eggs suitable for eating will sink to the bottom of the glass.

Eggs that float to the surface have gone off and must not be eaten.  Off eggs float because pockets of air form in them as the egg goes off, making them float in water.

What Else To Look For

If you are in any doubt about the freshness of your egg and the results of this test, then there are a few further tests that you can make to make sure your egg is fresh.

The smell of the egg, once you’ve cracked it open, will also let you know if the egg suitable for consumption. If you’re not sure what rotten egg smells like, then it’s quite a sulfurous smell, not too dissimilar to a really bad fart! You really can’t miss the smell when an egg is off!

If you are still in any doubt, then take a look at the egg once you’ve cracked it open. Visually, if the egg is off then the yellow yolk will also be lying flat, rather than slightly raised. The albumen – the clear part of the egg – will also be very runny, almost like water.

With any egg past its best before date, do ensure it’s cooked thoroughly before eating, due to the risk of salmonella.

But Are They Really Ok to Eat?

I took these photos on the 28th of July. So even though my egg says best before 11th July this egg test suggests the egg is fresh and it’s still safe to eat.  

I admit, I did feel skeptical the first time I tried this test out. Thankfully, I’m pleased to report that I didn’t get ill. And, actually, I have never been ill from an egg since we moved in together thirteen years ago. So my how to test if eggs are fresh method is tried and trusted, let me assure you of that!  And even the NHS says you can eat eggs after their best before date.  Again, just cook it thoroughly.

Would you eat an egg past its expiration date?  Or do you have any other food tips?  Do share in the comments below!  And do check out my failsafe tip on how to tell if milk is bad.