How Do You Know When Potatoes Are Bad?

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There are many things that can tell you when you are dealing with a potato that isn’t good. There are certain smells to look for as well as a certain way to store them. Below are a few of the things that you can check out.

Solanine poisoning

There have been a few cases where people have been sickened from eating potatoes because of solanine poisoning. Solanine is a glycoalkaloid that can cause gastrointestinal and neurological disorders when ingested in large quantities.

If you notice that a potato is greening up, don’t try to eat it. This is because potatoes turn green when exposed to light. It is also a good indicator of the presence of solanine.

The amount of solanine in a potato depends on your body’s tolerance for the toxin. Those who are more sensitive to solanine should not consume potatoes. However, most consumers are not affected by the toxin in small amounts.

Potatoes that have been exposed to light can increase the concentration of solanine. These potatoes are considered “bad” potatoes. They also tend to have green sprouts along the skin.

When a person eats too much solanine, he or she can experience nausea, headaches, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, paralysis, nervousness, weakness, and drowsiness. Depending on the severity of the infection, it may take up to a day before symptoms appear.

People have been poisoned by solanine since ancient times. The first solanine was identified in 1820 from the European black nightshade. Since then, the toxin has been produced by several plants within the Solanum genus, including tomatoes and eggplant.

The nightshade family is comprised of over 2,800 species of plants, some of which include tomato, potatoes, and eggplant. In addition to being toxic, the alkaloids can disrupt cell membranes and inhibit the cholinesterase enzyme.

Besides potatoes, other vegetables that are part of the nightshade family include berries. Some of the toxins found in potatoes, such as solanine, are also found in some berries.

Solanine poisoning is often caused by green potatoes. While potatoes can be dangerous for humans, it is not as dangerous for animals. Symptoms of solanine poisoning can be mild, and many people are able to avoid it by not eating green potatoes.

Nevertheless, it is important to remember that even peeled potatoes contain solanine. So if you suspect that a potato has been contaminated with solanine, peel it off and throw it away.


If you’re buying potatoes, be sure to check for the sprouts on the skin. Sprouts on potatoes are a good indicator that the potatoes you’ve purchased are aging and may be unsafe to eat.

Green sprouts are an indicator of a potential problem. You can avoid this if you’re careful with the way you store and prepare your potatoes.

Potatoes can get a green tint when stored in a dark environment. They should be stored in a breathable bag to prevent this.

The best way to store your potatoes is to keep them out of the refrigerator. Keeping them in the pantry or in a cool, dry place will help.

Using a potato peeler is a good way to remove the sprouts. This is a simple and inexpensive method. Make sure you clean your potato with running water to get rid of any debris.

Having a ripe potato will make the sprouts on the skin a thing of the past. A firm potato will retain most of its nutrients.

Using the right potato storage containers will also ensure that your potatoes last longer. Stackable baskets are ideal for tight spaces. Keep them away from onions and other foods that can accelerate the sprouting process.

Solanine is a glycoalkaloid that can cause vomiting and other digestive problems. It is found in a number of vegetables, including potatoes, and it is not a good idea to consume large amounts.

Having a potato with a sprout can be quite frustrating. But it is still a good idea to remove the sprouts from your potatoes before eating them. To do so, make sure to cut the sprouts from the potatoes.

Lastly, it is a good idea to use a vegetable peeler to get rid of the sprouts. A paring knife is a good option, as well. Vegetable peelers have a sharp edge that can remove the sprouts without damaging the potato. Regardless of which you choose, be sure to rinse the peeling with running water.

With these tips, you can be sure to keep your potatoes healthy and safe.


If you have been shopping at your local grocery store for the past few weeks, you have likely noticed that some of the potatoes you buy may have a slightly odd look. This is a telltale sign that they are on their way out. Luckily, if you know what to look for, you can save them before they get bad.

Rotting potatoes can be dangerous. Not only do they smell bad, they release toxins. The rotting process breaks down the potato tuber and leaves behind a foul odor. When inhaled, the toxins can make you sick or even unconscious.

While some potatoes are naturally safe to eat, there are others that carry a deadly toxin. To prevent this, store potatoes in a cool, dry place. Storing them in the basement or in a shed are good options.

Potatoes contain a substance called solanine. Solanine is a glycoalkaloid. It’s a natural component of potatoes and is harmless in small amounts, but can increase in concentration when stored improperly.

Aside from the obvious odor of rotting potatoes, there are some more cryptic signs you should be on the lookout for. These include mushy potatoes, soft spots, and sprouts. Mushy potatoes are a sign of a rotting potato and should be discarded. Soft spots indicate that the potato is leaking moisture, which should be a warning.

Sprouts are a bit more tricky. You can still eat sprouted potatoes, but the best thing to do is remove them before you consume them.

Mold is another potential problem. Look for signs of mold such as brown, gray, or black spots, and fuzz on the potatoes. Wrinkles are a common occurrence and don’t necessarily mean the potatoes are bad. Rather, they are a symptom of humidity and poor storage conditions.

If you aren’t sure whether your potatoes are safe to eat, the best way to determine is to cut them open and check for the aforementioned signs of decay. If you can’t, discard them. However, if you can, save them in a breathable bag.

As with most things, you want to be careful with spoiled food. It can leave a sticky mess and stain surfaces.


Potatoes have a long shelf life when stored correctly. However, they can go bad when stored in the wrong way. The key is to store them in a cool, dark place. You should also avoid storing potatoes in the refrigerator or freezer. This helps to prolong their shelf life.

Depending on the kind of potato you’re buying, it may be possible to tell when potatoes are bad by looking at their skin. If they are wrinkly, it’s a sign that they will spoil. Also, if they are green, they are a sign of poor quality.

Another indicator that a potato is bad is if it has sprouts. Sprouts are a sign of improper storage. They should not exceed five inches (12.7 cm) in length. Toss a potato if the sprouts are longer than this.

Lastly, you should look at the color of your potatoes. If the potatoes are green, they are a sign that they are spoiled. Green spots on a potato are caused by a toxin called solanine. If your potatoes are green, discard them.

Having a moldy smell is another sign that a potato is spoiled. There are many different kinds of mold, such as black, red, and grayish-white. Mold on a food item looks like a fuzz growing on the dish. It is not pleasant to eat.

If you notice a musty odor when you are cooking your potatoes, you should discard them. Moldy potatoes can also have a foul taste.

Another thing to look for is the consistency of your cooked potatoes. A firm potato is safe to eat, but a soft potato is not. Try to test the consistency of a potato with a fork or spoon. Mushy potatoes are inedible.

Regardless of whether you are planning to eat the potatoes or throw them away, it is important to remember to properly store them. Properly storing food reduces food waste and prevents food poisoning.

Storing your potatoes in a dry closet or other dark, cool place is the best way to keep them fresh. You can also freeze them if you plan to use them later.


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