By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
4 'best by' dates you should NEVER ignore and 4 that don't matter (for the sake of your health)
You think it's fine ... but is it? - photo by Amberlee Lovell
Did you know that most products you use dont even have to have an expiration, best by or sell by date, according to WebMD? By law only certain foods (like baby formula) have to have an expiration date. This means that a lot of those dates can be ignored, which is great news to all of us who hate throwing food out.

But while this works for some foods, others can make you seriously ill if you push past those warning dates. Be sure to know which foods you can eat past their best by dates, and which ones to throw away.

Be wary of:

1. Mayo or Miracle Whip

Whether youre a Mayo fan or a Miracle Whip fan, the rules apply to both. Other condiments can go several months or even years past the expiration date, but unopened mayo in your pantry should be thrown out a week after it expires. Open mayo (in your fridge) should be discarded one month after it expires, according to Eat By Date.

2. Deli Meat

You should never eat deli meat past its expiration date. Deli meat can carry a bacteria that grows in cold temperatures called listeria, according to Fox News. Eating deli meat that is expired can be hazardous to your health.

3. Mixed salads

Its not likely youre eating slimy salad, but if you are, it doesnt just taste bad its not good for your health. Bags of mixed greens are exposed to more bacteria because they are handled frequently, according to Fox News. When your greens acquire a dark slime, throw them away.

4. Honey

Honey never expires (Ive eaten honey my grandma has had in her storage from the 1970s), but its a myth that it doesnt go bad. Because it has a yeast presence, honey can ferment and turn into alcohol, according to WNYC.

Dont be so worried about:

1. Eggs

You can usually eat eggs three to four weeks after their best by date, according to Eat By Date. However, you can only save egg whites, yolks or substitutes for a few days (no more than three).

2. Pickles

As long as they aren't opened, pickles can last up to two years (whether in the fridge or in the pantry) post expiration date.

3. Cereal

Companies print a best by date so consumers eat their product when it tastes the best. Cereal long past its best by date probably wont taste weird, and may even lose its color, but its usually safe to eat, according to Time.

4. Mac and Cheese

Similar to cereal, Mac and Cheese can still be safely consumed a year after its expiration date, but it might not taste great.
Sign up for our E-Newsletters