Today when I was making Bolognese sauce, I removed the moldy part of the tomato paste and use the non-moldy part in the sauce. After searching on the internet, I found out that I can get sick from it. But I already added the tomato paste in my sauce, and it's a huge waste to throw the sauce away. Because the sauce has to cook for about an hour, is it possible to destroy the mold effects under high temperature?

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    Many times you would be absolutely fine if you boil the hell out of it. The other times could be rather unpleasant, or dangerous especially if you're not in the best of health. Even if the sauce boils hard, not all bacterial toxins are destroyed by booking. How much clean paste you removed under the mould may also make a difference.
    – Chris H
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 18:33
  • You can find a pretty in-depth answer for how to deal with mold here: cooking.stackexchange.com/a/34671/34394
    – eirikdaude
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 18:52
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    For future reference, there are companies that make tomato paste in a tube that lasts a LONG time. I actually have a tube on it that says on the side "Lasts Indefinitely".
    – Duncan
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 23:47
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    @Chris H raises a good point about health. My young children and I can beat back just about any virus/bacteria. But if you have immunosuppressed people (Seniors, those from major surgery, AIDS/HIV etc... ) who may consume... throw it out.
    – Paulb
    Commented Apr 15, 2016 at 20:29
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    I was set to say : "Only if you are living in the Zombie Apocalypse. Even then, not really." Then, I stumbled on this. I'm still not sure. "Most of the molds are benign and not likely to hurt you..." Whelp, up to you, I guess.
    – D Hydar
    Commented Jun 27, 2016 at 22:33

2 Answers 2


I would take caution before consuming the sauce. It is possible that you may have killed mold however there could still be toxins. There are a lot of variables in these types of situations, such as whether or not those who are consuming the sauce have an allergy to mold. That is why a typical response is when in doubt, throw it out. I would say if you insist on keeping it taking a very small taste and give it about 30 minutes and see if you start developing a rash, throat starts feeling itchy / funny. But this can be extremely unsafe and I would advise against it.

  • 1
    It is also worth noting that a lot of the toxins produced by mold are carcinogenic, i.e. you may not feel any immediate bad effects, but they can be damaging in the long run.
    – eirikdaude
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 18:51
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    or they can destroy your kidneys or liver. And in finland there is a study going on if childhood diabetes could be triggered by mold toxins. Commented Mar 25, 2016 at 15:18
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    and as with most fungi , the visible part of mold is only the part producing spore, the rest of the food can be contaminated by the remote "roots" of the mold. Commented Mar 25, 2016 at 15:19

This forum discusses a bit about tomatoes left in the fridge for way too long, multiple people say that botulism can only occur while in the can (stay away from bulging cans), and that after you open it, molding can happen, but that is not that big of a deal.

This website says that it is usually totally fine, and that if you scrape off the mold, the only problem might be a slight undesired taste.

Then there's the tons of people that say your going to die if you eat any form of tomato that has gone bad in the least degree. (but don't give any reason)

If you really don't want to throw it out, just eat it and take the risk. Chances are you won't die.

  • Confused: your second link does not say it's totally fine; the conclusion there is "While the molds might not hurt you, I myself would not risk it."
    – kelnos
    Commented Sep 12, 2021 at 19:59

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