Few things are as satisfying to use as snacks or side dishes as cheese sticks. They can be made from varieties of cheeses such as mozzarella, cheddar, Colby, or Monterey Jack. Cheese sticks will come individually wrapped, which helps to keep them fresher for longer. But the critical question is, do cheese sticks go bad, and how do you know if they are still good enough to eat?
Cheese sticks will go bad once they get moisture in them. They can stay refrigerated for about four to six weeks, and keeping cheese in cool temperatures will lessen the bacteria growth. When buying cheese, always check the best before date; the fresher the cheese, the longer it will take to go bad.
If you aren’t consuming cheese sticks fast enough, you can put them in the freezer to enjoy later. Cheese sticks will still retain their shape and taste in the freezer. They should just be frozen individually for easy accessibility and used as needed.
How Long Before Cheese Sticks Go Bad?
It’s crucial to understand that mold and its microorganisms are an essential part of making cheese.
Any mold growing on a hard type of cheese can easily be cut away, and you can still eat the cheese without any harm.
But there’s a point where cheese sticks go bad, which is to be avoided.
Keeping cheese sticks in the refrigerator will keep them fresh for up to six weeks or in the freezer for up to six months.
Once cheese sticks are thawed, you can’t freeze them again, and they shouldn’t be left out of the freezer for more than two hours.
If they are completely thawed at room temperature, they must be consumed as soon as possible and not be refrozen again.
When stored correctly in the fridge, cheese sticks can be kept for up to six to eight weeks.
It’s safe to consume them as long as there’s no moisture or mold growth on the cheese.
However, if you cook your cheese sticks, it’s best to consume them immediately.
You can keep any of the leftovers in the refrigerator for up to three days.
Breaded cheese sticks that are bought fresh from a restaurant, deli, or supermarket are best stored in the fridge and must be consumed as soon as possible.
Don’t keep them in the refrigerator for longer than three days.
Do Mozzarella Cheese Sticks Go Bad?
Mozzarella is a soft cheese and, as such, can go bad more quickly than some other cheeses.
Mozzarella should smell fresh and milky. If it goes bad, it will most likely smell sour or yeasty.
Even if mozzarella cheese sticks don’t show mold, it’s best to consume them before the best-before date and to throw them out if any mold becomes visible.
Once cheese sticks have been out of the packet, like if you packed them for lunch, consuming them within six to eight hours is best.
Don’t leave them out for any longer than that.
Do Cheddar Cheese Sticks Go Bad?
Cheddar is a harder cheese. It’s safe to consume if some mold grows on it; you can just cut the mold off.
A bit of green, blue, white, or grey mold is okay.
On the other hand, red or black mold is terrible, and if this mold grows on the cheese, it should be thrown out immediately.
You should then also disinfect the refrigerator immediately.
You don’t want that mold to grow any further and contaminate your refrigerator.
Do Colby Cheese Sticks Go Bad?
Colby Cheese is a semi-hard American cheese and is often compared with cheddar cheese.
This is because both kinds of cheese are dyed to have an orange appearance.
However, the cheeses don’t taste the same at all.
Colby cheese is a much softer cheese than cheddar, and it has a higher moisture content.
It’s also a much milder and creamier cheese.
Once the Colby loses its moisture and becomes moldy, it’s best to discard it.
You can keep Colby cheese sticks in the freezer to keep it fresher for longer, but use them within four to six months.
You can also put it in your fridge and use it by the best-before date.
Do Monterey Jack Cheese Sticks Go Bad?
Monterey Jack is also a semi-hard cheese. It’s mild and creamy in flavor, and it’s pale yellow in color.
It’s a great cheese to use for melting, which makes it great as a cheese stick.
Since Monterey Jack is also a softer type of cheese, mold is never a good thing to have on it, and you should discard the cheese sticks once mold appears.
They can also be kept in the refrigerator for four to six weeks or in the freezer for four to six months.
How To Keep Cheese Sticks Fresher For Longer?
The cheese will generally go bad either when it’s exposed to external moisture or when it loses its internal moisture.
When storing cheese, it’s best to keep it away from any external moisture.
Keeping cheese sticks in the freezer will make them last longer.
You can safely keep most cheese sticks in the freezer for three to six months.
If the cheese sticks are wrapped individually, you can freeze them just like that inside a zip-sealed bag.
Otherwise, you can wrap them individually first and then put them inside a zip sealed bag and into the freezer, to make it easier to get them later.
Once the cheese sticks are thawed, you must eat them as soon as possible.
After thawing, it’s still safe to keep them in the refrigerator for up to three days.
Don’t Let Them Dry Out
It’s important not to let any cheese dry out.
Harder cheese, as in the case of cheese sticks, can be left out of the fridge for about 8 hours.
Cheese that has dried out will become crusty and crumbly.
In some cases, cheese can lose its oil or moisture if left out for too long.
If the cheese looks unappealing or unappetizing, don’t eat it.
Watch Where You Store Your Cheese Sticks
Cheese is a soft, creamy, super-absorbent substance.
You should never store cheese sticks with any other pungent-smelling foods.
While the cheese breathes, it may absorb those smells and flavors, which can also spoil the cheese.
If possible, you should always store the cheese in the original packaging and cover the package with waxed paper, foil, or plastic to protect the cheese from drying out in the fridge.
Keep cheese sticks wrapped in waxed paper and store them inside a zip-sealed bag, even in the refrigerator, ensuring that the cheese doesn’t lose humidity while maintaining good air circulation.
When freezing cheese sticks, you should wrap them tightly.
And, more importantly, don’t keep the cheese for more than six months.
How To Thaw Cheese Sticks Before Use?
When you’re ready to eat your frozen stored cheese sticks, the best way to thaw it without it going bad is by putting it in the fridge for slow thawing.
This will lower the chances of the cheese losing its texture and flavor.
Thawing the cheese on the counter or in the microwave could make it lose its texture, and the cheese sticks may crumble or break into pieces.