How to Tell if Sushi is Bad: Top Secret 

Do you know how to tell if sushi is bad or not? If you don’t, just spare five minutes of your time and go through this guide. 

As a sushi lover, telling whether a homemade or ordered Sushi from a restaurant is what you must learn. This is because the dish is often deceptive in its appearance and texture, so you may not notice if it is bad or not, even when you touch it or smell it. 

However, telling whether sushi is bad is a simple thing to do. As such, we will share the secrets and tips you need to know about how to tell if your sushi is bad or not

What Is Sushi?

Sushi is a classic Japanese cuisine made up of vinegared rice culminated with a range of raw fish and vegetables. It comes in various styles, and it is made with medium-grain white rice. 

How To Tell If Sushi Is Bad

Here are some of the secrets to discovering bad sushi. 

  • Bad smell

Even though the main ingredient is fish, it shouldn’t smell fishy. 

As such, if you get a fish-like smell from your sushi, it definitely has gone bad. 

  • Patches on the fish

If you notice dark patches and discoloration in the fish, throw it away, as it indicates that the sushi is bad. 

This is because. Good sushi should maintain the Fresh, consistent, and vibrant color and translucent appearance of a fish.

  • Hard and Crumbly Rice

White rice is one of the major ingredients in this dish; if the rice is hard, do not consume it. 

Good sushi rice should be soft and spring back when squeezed and not crumbly. 

  • Change in the color of Rice

If you notice that the white rice used in the sushi has turned brown, you should discard it.

Also, if the rice is slimy, mushy, or has a weird smell, it means that it is not safe to eat. 

  • Weird Taste

If you notice a gummy and an unpleasant flavor when consuming it, it shows that the sushi is bad. 

  • Mushy Nori

If you discover that the Nori is Moist or slimy, it simply means that the sushi has stayed for too long and is bad for consumption. 

The Risk involved in eating bad Sushi

It is possible that you encounter the following health conditions if you consume bad sushi.

  • Scombroid Food Poisoning

This is caused by excess histamine that can cause a severe allergic reaction or anaphylaxis as a result of decayed seafood. 

Some symptoms are sweating, vomiting, dizziness, rashes, and a burning sensation in the mouth. 

  • Listeriosis

Listeria infection is caused by a severe infection in the gut that may result in nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.

  • Bacillus Cereus Infection

Spoiled rice and vegetables found in sushi can cause Bacillus Cereus infection if the rice has stayed at room temperature for a long time which can cause a vomiting infection.

  • Salmonella Food Poisoning

Salmonella infection can be gotten from improperly-prepared raw fish, which results in fever, stomach cramps, and diarrhea. 

How To Prevent Homemade Sushi From Going Bad

For your homemade sushi, you need to take food poisoning due to improper handling.

  • Buy and use the freshest fish available in the market for your sushi.
  • Follow a strict protocol of flash-freezing the fish for sushi for 15 hours to ensure no parasites have survived. 

You can also make sushi at home by following FDA recommendations if you do not have the right equipment.

  • Use farmed salmon, tuna, or other whole marine fish for safer sushi, as most freshwater fish are prone to parasites.
  • Ensure that you use clean tools and neat working areas to prevent your fresh ingredients from getting contaminated. 
  • Use and consume fish at most 24 hours after it has been thawed inside the refrigerator or four hours if it has been out at room temperature. 
  • Store leftover sushi inside an air-tight container and place the dish inside the refrigerator.

However, you have to consume it within two days or in an hour if the sushi is served outdoors. 

How To Keep Sushi Fish In The Refrigerator To Prevent It From Going Bad

  • Freeze the fish at -4 degrees Fahrenheit for a week.
  • Freeze it at -31 degrees Fahrenheit until the fish becomes solid.
  • Store the fish at the same temperature for 15 hours before using it for sushi.
READ MORE: How Long Does Sushi Last In The Fridge? 


Sushi is a classic Japanese dish whose main ingredient is white rice and fish. However, it could be considered bad and risky to the health if anything goes wrong with the fish or rice.

Some of the ways to tell if sushi is bad are when you have smelly and discoloration on the fish. Also, when the rice becomes moist and changes color, with bad taste, you should know to throw the sushi away.

Consuming bad sushi can cause health conditions like Scombroid Food Poisoning, Salmonella Food Poisoning, Bacillus Cereus Infection, and Listeriosis.

You can prevent your homemade sushi from going bad if you use fresh fish, follow strict instructions on how to make sushi, and use clean equipment. 

Leftover sushi should be stored in an airtight container in a refrigerator and should be consumed in hours or days. 

How long can sushi last in the fridge?

Sushi should be consumed within 2 days of being made. Consuming sushi after this time can increase the risk of food poisoning.

Can I eat sushi that has been left out at room temperature?

We do not recommend it to eat sushi that has been left out at room temperature for over 2 hours. Consuming sushi that has been left out for longer than this can increase the risk of food poisoning.

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