How To Know If Potatoes Are Bad?

You must be curious to learn how to know if potatoes are bad while looking at your stored potatoes. Potatoes are the most commonly used vegetable in several dishes. This vegetable is healthy and delicious and is readily available in grocery stores. It is important to know if a potato is safe to eat when it’s kept in your kitchen pantry for too long. In today’s post, I will explain how to know if potatoes are bad on Reddit. Generally, the shelf life of this vegetable depends on how they’re stored and whether they’ve been cooked. Let’s now find out how to know if potatoes are bad.

How To Know If Potatoes Are Bad?

In this section, I will explain how to know if potatoes are bad in detail. Before using potatoes in your recipe, you always have to make sure you are using fresh potatoes. Luckily, there are different ways to determine whether your potatoes are suitable or not suitable for cooking. 

You can consider the following spoilage signs to learn how to know if raw potatoes are bad.

  1. Sprouts 

When you store your potatoes in the pantry for too long, they start growing small sprouts or eyes. This mostly happens with organic potatoes as no chemical is used to grow these vegetables. You can cut off the sprouts before cutting if the texture and smell are okay.

  1. Texture

Are slightly soft potatoes safe to eat? When your raw potatoes are firm to the touch, they are safe to eat. Usually, it is normal for potatoes to be soft but there is a limitation to this. If you feel the texture of potatoes is too soft or mushy, they have started to rot! It is better to discard these potatoes as it is no longer safe to eat.

You can keep on reading to know more about how to know if potatoes are bad.

  1. Smell

Usually, fresh potatoes smell earthy, nutty, and starchy while bad potatoes give a rotten foul smell. When potatoes start to go bad, they will give a bitter, musty, and moldy scent. Simply smell the potatoes first before using them in your recipe. If it gives a strong foul smell, it is better to discard the whole potato.

  1. Green Spots

Potatoes where stored in direct sunlight can easily develop green spots on their skin. These green spots indicate the presence of solanine toxin. This toxin can have serious side effects like neurological and digestive problems. You can cut away any green parts on the skin and use the unaffected part.

You can keep on reading to learn how to know if red potatoes are bad.

  1. Molds

When you don’t store the potatoes properly, molds will start forming on their surface. Examine the vegetable carefully to see if there are any molds present. You can remove small molds but it’s better to discard the potato if there are larger molds.

  1. Wrinkles

Human skin sags, forms wrinkles, and develop dark spots as it starts aging. This same thing even happens to potato skin! It is a clear warning sign that the vegetable is not in its best condition anymore and not should be eaten. Remember healthy potatoes’ skin is tight and doesn’t move much.

Now, you must be wondering how to know if sweet potatoes are bad. Sweet potatoes can easily last for 3 to 5 weeks if stored at normal room temperature. But they can easily go bad if you don’t store them properly. When you feel they are mushy, moldy, or wrinkled, they are bad. You may find it difficult to see green or dark spots on their surfaces due to their darker color.

Do you know how to know if Russet potatoes are bad? Russet potatoes are just like normal potatoes but are larger and more oblong in shape. They are bad if you feel their texture is soft, mushy, wrinkled, smells moldy, or has sprouts/molds.

Baby potatoes are the baby version of any normal potato a farmer grows. You can consider the same spoilage signs when it comes to how to know if baby potatoes are bad.

You can keep on reading to know more about how to know if potatoes are bad.

Cooked Potatoes Spoilage Signs

Many people have a habit to store leftover cooked potatoes for later use. However, it is a bit tricky to determine how to know if potatoes are bad after being cooked. You can consider the following spoilage signs to learn how to know if cooked potatoes are bad.

  • Spoiled cooked potatoes often give a strong offensive odor.
  • You may even notice visible brown, red, black, or blue-gray molds that indicate spoilage.
  • The texture of cooked potatoes looks odd if they are spoiled.

Leftover mashed potatoes can easily last for 3 to 5 days if stored correctly in a plastic container. But how to know if mashed potatoes are bad? Simply smell and observe your mashed potatoes to figure out if they are safe to eat. If you smell a bad odor and see visible molds, directly discard your potatoes without tasting them.

Are Sprouted Potatoes Bad?

No, not all sprouted potatoes are bad. Sprouted potatoes that are firm, have small sprouts or have no wrinkles are safe to eat. Simply chop off the sprouted parts and soft spots if any. However, if your potatoes are wrinkled or fully sprouted, it’s better to throw them in the trash bin.

Do Potatoes Go Bad In The Fridge?

No, potatoes won’t go bad if you store them in the fridge. It can easily last for three to four months without sprouting. Most people like to refrigerate potatoes due to a lack of pantry space or hot/humid conditions.

What To Do With Old Soft Potatoes?

After learning how to know if potatoes are bad, you must learn to use them in a smart way. You can cook old soft potatoes as not as they are not mushy, green, moldy, or sprouted. These potatoes are perfect for mashed potatoes, twice-baked potatoes, sweet potato casseroles, or soups. 

If your old soft potatoes have green skins, then you should not use them for cooking or baking.

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What Can Happen If You Eat A Bad Potato?

Consuming bad potatoes can cause solanine poisoning. Symptoms include headaches, vomiting, fever, stomach cramps, and difficulty in breathing. Other symptoms include diarrhea, shock, and hallucinations

How Long Does It Take For Potatoes To Go Bad?

Potatoes can last for up to several months in a cool pantry. If stored at room temperature, they are best if eaten within one to two weeks. Once cooked, keep them in the fridge for no more than three days.

Are Soft Potatoes Okay To Cook?

A: Yes, it’s OK to bake or boil slightly soft potatoes. I am assuming they don’t have large sprouts (if you can knock off the sprouts with your finger or a brush that’s fine too). Potatoes are 80% water on average, so some of that moisture drying up is natural.

Can You Eat A Sprouted Potato?

Sprouted potatoes that are still firm, have relatively small sprouts, and don’t show any wrinkles or shriveling are okay to eat, as long as you cut off the sprouted parts and soft spots.

Why Is My Bag Of Potatoes Wet?

The potatoes might have been harvested in heat and started perspiring, just like a human might, as it is still a living organism. If trapped in a bag or box then the moisture can cause the potatoes to be wet or sealed up with no ventilation and could actually mold if left that way too long.

Is It OK To Use A Soft Potato?

Soft potatoes should be fine to eat on the whole; a lot of people use them even when they have gone quite soft. However, you should look out for signs of spoilage before you wash and cut the potatoes, and if you see mold, leaking, or mushy areas, the potatoes need to be thrown away.


By reading the above post, you got to know how to know if potatoes are bad. Raw potatoes show spoilage signs like dark spots on the skin, a soft or mushy texture, and a foul odor. Whereas cooked potatoes can go bad without any noticeable signs. If you notice visible molds or smell a strong pungent odor it is spoiled! Spoiled mashed potatoes will start separating liquid from the solids. Sprouting potatoes are safe if they aren’t rotten but can go bad in a couple of days. Once you understand how to know if potatoes are bad, you can easily distinguish between good and bad potatoes.

What do bad potatoes look like