Can A Slim Jim Go Bad? Explained

Slim Jim beef jerky meat sticks

Slim Jim is perhaps the most well-known brand of meat sticks and beef jerky in the United States. Being a meat-based snack, you may be wondering if the Slim Jim you are munching on can go bad? If so, what kind of expiration date does it have? Can you prevent it from going bad? How do you store it properly?

Let’s start by answering the main question.

Yes, Slim Jim meat sticks and beef jerky can go bad. Every edible product has an expiration date, and so do Slim Jims.

But here is the thing.

Slim Jim products typically have a shelf life of around 1 year from the date of manufacture. But even if your pack has passed its expiration date, you can still consume your Slim Jim for a few more months if it has not been opened yet.

This was not always the case, though.

Slim Jim did not mention expiry dates on their packaging until a few years ago. They only started doing it only recently due to government regulations.

So, while we won’t recommend consuming Slim Jim past their BBD (best before date), what we can say is that they tend to stay fit for consumption if stored under proper conditions.

So what happens past the ‘Best before date’? Well, to begin with, the moisture content in the Slim Jim gets reduced. This can make it a little tougher to chew, and is overall not a good advertisement for how tasty it can be.

But be warned that consuming any product past its marked date is at your own risk. Slim Jim won’t be liable for any food poisoning or worse arising from consuming a stale pack.

What are Slim Jims made out of?

Slim Jim meat sticks have corn, wheat, lactic acid as the culture starter, dextrose, maltodextrin, citric acid, salt, and a very minute quantity of sodium nitrite just to keep the myoglobin of animal meat muscle from turning gray.

Sodium nitrite is a powerful oxidizing agent, and in large quantities can cause hypoxia or even death. But this is nothing to worry about when consumed in small quantities – which is exactly what you have in Slim Jim.

Slim Jims also has hydrolyzed soy and the meat of chicken, beef, or pork. Paprika is used for the spice. It has a very high sodium content and is labeled unhealthy by experts due to the excessively high amounts of sodium.

How long do Slim Jims last?

Slim Jims did not mention any expiry dates until very recently which means they do last for a very long amount of time.

They started mentioning expiry dates very recently and accordingly, it lasts up to one year from the date of manufacturing.

But a lot of consumers online have shared experiences about leaving them in their pantry for a lot longer than that, and them still being consumable.

But best-before-dates are there for a reason, and you are strongly advised to follow the guidelines mentioned in the packaging.

Slim Jims are made up of various preservatives, just like any other ready-to-eat snack, to make their shelf life go up by multiple folds.

Having said that consuming so many preservatives itself is not healthy for your body, and you are advised to consume Slim Jim meat sticks in moderation.