Chicken Smells Like Bleach: Is It Bad? (Explained)

One of the foods we enjoy all the time is chicken. Many of us enjoy them at restaurants, and most of us stock raw chicken at home and cook them whenever we want. Now, if you’re buying raw chicken all the time, you may find it troubling if your raw chickens smell like eggs. If such happens, you may ask:

If my chicken smells like eggs, is it bad? If your chicken smells like bleach, it’s been washed for preservation purposes. Thus, while it looks very clean and fresh, it’s not something you should pick up in a grocery store. Instead, the wise thing to do is look for fresh options to make sure your chicken is safe for consumption. 

Some people submerge the old and unbought chicken in chemicals to keep the chicken from smelling funky. However, while it removes the funky smell, it doesn’t mean you’ll get it fresh. Thus, it would be best if you were wary of chicken that smells like bleach since they aren’t the best for consumption, and some consumers may even suffer from eating such.

This article will teach you how to handle raw chicken that smells like bleach. This way, you can understand what this scent means on raw chicken and that you should avoid such whenever you can. It will also give you an idea of what to do if you have a chicken that smells like bleach.

Without further ado, let’s get into it!

Chicken Smells Like BleachPin

Why does my raw chicken smell like bleach?

When you purchase meat and it has an almost chemical, chlorine odor, it has been washed to preserve it. Therefore, such meat is probably old and should be avoided.

When your chicken smells off, you might notice it right away. The bleach flavor you may notice in your chicken comes from being soaked in bleach before being sold.

Before selling, people may submerge the chicken in chemical substances for several reasons. Raw chicken can be effectively disinfected using chlorine or bleach with a small and allowable amount. The chicken smells relatively bad if they use a high concentration of bleach water. 

They usually want to hide the bad appearance or smell of stale chicken slaughtered weeks or even days ago.

After soaking in bleach, the chicken will lose the foul odor of old or contaminated chicken and be coated with a chlorine-like odor.

Why does my cooked chicken smell like bleach?

If your cooked chicken smells like bleach, it means it’s not fresh and that it was submerged in chemicals to look clean and fresh. 

When you purchase chicken, and it has an almost chemical, chlorine odor to it, it has been washed to preserve it. However, this is an old chicken, and you should look for fresher ones instead. 

It is probably best not to eat chicken that didn’t smell bad initially but now has a bad smell after being cooked. You would instead not get sick then get sick from eating it.  

Is chicken bad if it smells like bleach?

Yes, the chicken is bad if it smells like bleach. Unfortunately, in most cases, people who sell chicken tend to submerge old chicken meat in bleach to preserve them longer.

As a result, they don’t get the funky smell. Instead, most people get the clean and almost chemical chlorine scent. Such a chicken isn’t fresh, and you should opt for other options instead.

Can you cook chicken that smells like bleach?

Yes, you can cook chicken that smells like bleach. However, while the bleach scent might fade upon cooking, it won’t taste as good as you can get with fresh raw chicken.

For this reason, you should always check the freshness of the chicken you buy. This way, you can avoid dealing with chicken that smells like bleach and ensure that the chicken you cook is safe for consumption.

Is it safe to eat chicken that smells like bleach?

There are several ways to determine if the chicken you’re about to eat is safe for consumption or not.

Generally speaking, you shouldn’t rely on the smell of the chicken alone to decide whether it should be discarded or consumed.

The problem is that chicken that smells like bleach is not safe to eat, especially if you care about your family’s health.

The first reason why it is unsafe to eat chicken that smells like bleach would be that it is often the case that the chicken is contaminated or stale.

Another thing to keep in mind, bleach is a chemical that should never be consumed.

There is a possibility that you may become sick after eating chicken that has been soaked in bleach if your digestive system and immune system are sensitive.

What happens if you eat chicken that smells like bleach?

Eating chicken that smells like bleach may result in digestive issues such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and an upset stomach. 

The bacteria that cause infection are usually killed when chicken is cooked correctly, but eating a chicken that smells like bleach poses a risk.

Pick a raw chicken piece that does not have a strong scent, and keep it frozen unless you intend to cook it. In this way, you will avoid those funky odors, and you’ll be able to enjoy raw chicken without worries.


In a nutshell, the smell of bleach indicates that your chicken has been cleaned for preservation. As a result, even though it looks pretty clean and fresh, you should not purchase it from a grocery store. Instead, if you want to ensure that your chicken is healthy, you should choose fresh options. 

It is common for some people to soak an old and unbought chicken in chemicals to keep it from smelling funky. Unfortunately, although you’ll get rid of the funky smell, you won’t get it fresh. As a result, consumers should avoid eating chicken that smells like bleach because it isn’t the best for consumption, and some may even suffer.



Image credits – Canva

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