Whether eaten plain, in a juice, shake, smoothie, or incorporated into your favorite dish, mangos are delightful tropical fruits.
Over 500 varieties are available in various parts of the world and have been around for quite some time.
The low-calorie vegetables are packed with vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, that improve immunity and boost growth.
A mango’s shelf life is limited just as any other fruit’s and if it is not stored properly and consumed within a certain timeframe, it will go bad.
You won’t know whether a mango is ripe, overripe, or bad if you have never eaten one. Fortunately, there are ways to avoid having an unpleasant mango experience by knowing if a fruit is bad.
So, how to tell if a mango is bad? The texture of a bad mango is very soft and mushy, and any bruises and dark spots are exaggerated. Besides oozing, it may smell sour or alcoholic and have mold spores. The mango should be discarded if any of these signs appear.
You can distinguish a perfectly ripe mango from an overripe one by looking at these tips, which will help you prolong their shelf life:
Signs of an Overripe Mango
The texture, appearance, scent, and color of a mango will all change if it has gone bad.
It is best to determine ripeness by feeling the fruit in your hand. Even if it doesn’t have the color yet, it will still be ripe if it feels fine and feels alright to touch.
Grip the fruit and feel the texture using your fingers near the stem at the top. If the fruit is soft, apply a light pressure.
Mangos are ripe when they give a little when squeezed. A slight press will pierce the fruit, indicating that it is overripe.
The skin of ripe mangoes tends to develop some wrinkles, which should also be noted. During overripeness, the wrinkles in the fruit become deeper and cover more of the fruit.
If you feel any unusual signs on the mango’s surface, you can lightly rub your fingertips across its surface to check for wrinkles.
Mangoes are naturally spotted and speckled with brown spots. A ripe mango, for example, may have red spots on it. These are often signs that the mango is ready to eat.
Black spots that develop deep inside can pose a problem when they grow large.
You might want to discard the mango if it appears to be oozing liquid from its damaged skin. You can also tell that the mango has mold if it’s moldy, so discard it.
Overripe mangoes also feel squishy and are darker in color compared to other ripe mangoes when you cut them.
You can tell how ripe a mango is by its smell. You can test his smell by giving him a good whiff in the stem area since that is the place where the mango’s smell is the strongest.
Chances are if the mango smells strong, sweet, and fruity, it is ready for eating and fully ripened.
The overripe mango, however, will take on a sour or alcoholic, or even somewhat bitter, smell as it rots.
An overripe mango smells as bad as it smells because of its high sugar content that causes the fruit to naturally ferment. This same fermentation results in an overripe mango taste as well.
There are different types of mangoes, including green, yellow, orange, red, and purple. According to the variety of mango in question, the color of a ripe mango can vary.
Mangoes can be found all over the world and are available in over 500 different varieties. When they are ripe and ready to eat, they all exhibit a different color.
While some types of tomatoes stay green when they are ripe, others can turn a bright yellow or orange when they are ripe.
You should not use the mango’s color alone to check for its ripeness but rather use it only as a backup indicator.
How Long Do Mangoes Last?
A mango’s shelf life is limited, like that of any other fresh fruit. The length of time they last in your kitchen depends on their ripeness.
Unripe mangoes can take anywhere from 1-7 days to ripen depending on the type and how far along they are.
Ripens much slower than those that are bright green and firm. Yellow tinges and loosening will occur when they are ripe.
As long as it is properly stored in the fridge, you can expect the ripe mango to last at least five days. Keeping the fruit in the refrigerator for a couple of days may give you an extra few days.
Sliced or cubed ripe mangoes can also be kept in the fridge for several days. Peeled or chopped fruits last longer than whole fruits.
How To Store Mangoes?
Mangoes must be stored properly regardless of their ripe or unripe status.
Unripe mangoes should be stored at room temperature. If you do not have a fruit basket, you can put them in a paper bag.
It is important to ensure that the mangoes are not exposed to direct sunlight.
In order to speed up ripening, the paper bag technique is particularly useful. Trapping this gas aids in the maturation of the mangos.
Add other fruits and vegetables that produce ethylene gas to the paper bag with the mangoes to speed up the process even further.
Apples, avocados, tomatoes, and bananas work well for this purpose. Keep an eye on mangoes every few days or so.
When mangoes are ripe, they should be stored in the refrigerator where they can be kept for up to 14 days. Mangoes continue to ripen at room temperature once they are ripe.
Mangoes should always be packed in airtight containers and stored in the fridge.
Let’s talk about a few related questions concerning mangoes now that we’ve discussed some tests to tell if they’re ripe or gone bad.
Can you freeze mangoes?
Yes, you can. There’s no reason you can’t make frozen mangoes yourself at home since frozen mangoes are easily available in supermarkets.
Mangoes can be stored in the freezer for up to six months if you would like. Here’s how:
- After defrosting, wash, peel, and slice or strip the mangos according to your preference.
- Place the mango pieces on top of a baking sheet lined with silicone mats or parchment paper, or use any shallow dish, and make sure they don’t touch each other.
- Let the mangoes freeze solid on the sheet or dish overnight in the freezer.
- The mangoes can now be transferred to freezer bags, sealed tightly, and labelled with the date.
Can you eat overripe mangoes?
Even if overripe mangoes do not look their best, they can still be eaten.
There is, of course, no right or wrong; what might be just right for one person may be overripe for another.
There is a difference between an overripe mango and one that has gone bad. Smoothies, mango puree, desserts, or jam or chutney made from overripe mangoes are delicious with slightly overripe mangoes.
If you are using overripe mangoes in a recipe, make sure to taste test them first. Remove the overripe part of the mango and use the rest.
Avoid mushy mangoes and those with visible brown marks or black spots. A mango that is oozing liquid or has mold growth is a big no-no and is a sign that it is past its prime.