Blue Cheese’s Mold Mystery: Safe or Not?

Blue Cheese Secrets: Why Its Mold is Good for You

Blue cheese mold is safe because it’s made with Penicillium, a non-toxic mold that adds flavor and texture without producing harmful toxins. This specific mold is intentionally used in cheesemaking, making blue cheese safe to eat.

Can Blue Cheese Mold Make You Sick?

No, blue cheese mold won’t make you sick and it is perfectly safe for human consumption.

Blue cheese, much like many other cheeses, deliberately uses mold to give it its distinctive taste and texture.

The mold spores come into contact with blue cheese, either naturally or in a controlled manner.

However, what makes blue cheese mold safe to eat is that it is a form of penicillin.

The main varieties of penicillin found in blue cheese are Penicillium Roqueforti and Penicillium Glaucum.

Neither of these molds produce toxins by themselves and are therefore not dangerous to humans.

Penicillium roqueforti is the main mold that you’ll find on blue cheese.

These are naturally occurring mold spores, most commonly associated with the limestone caves in the Rouergue region of Southern France.

Legend has it that “blue cheese mold” was discovered in one of these caves by a farmer, over 1,000 years ago.

The farmer had settled in the cave to enjoy a lunch of sheep’s milk cheese and rye bread.

However, his flock dispersed, so he set off to round them up, thus completely forgetting about his lunch.

It wasn’t until he returned to the same cave a few months later that he discovered his uneaten lunch.

A thick layer of mold had formed over the cheese, and for whatever reason the farmer took a bite (definitely a braver man than me).

Is Blue Cheese Mold Good For You?

Now, before I get into this, it’s important to remember the saying, “Everything in moderation”.

Too much of a good thing is not actually that great for you.

That being said, there are certain health benefits to blue cheese mold.

Firstly, the mold on blue cheese is packed with antibacterial qualities, which can destroy various pathogens.

The same blue cheese molds also support gut flora.

This means that they are capable of improving both your digestion and your immunity system.

Furthermore, blue cheese contains more calcium than most other cheeses, which is great for your heart, bones, teeth, nerves, muscles, etc.

Additionally, Penicillium roqueforti produces enzymes that release amino acids, which are essential for many bodily functions.

So, you could say that blue cheese is excellent for lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease, as well as fighting against arthritis and preventing osteoporosis.

Plus, blue cheese mold even boosts your brain health.

Now, with all these positives you could be tempted to live off blue cheese, in the hope of living a healthier lifestyle.

However, you must remember that blue cheese is still cheese, so it is fairly high in calories and fat.

Eating blue cheese in moderation is fine, plus you get to enjoy the various health benefits.

But, much the same as any other type of food, if you overdo it on the blue cheese, you’ll suffer the consequences.

🧀 Blue Cheese Mold: Myths vs Facts 🧐

Myth: Blue cheese mold can make you sick like other food molds.Fact: The Penicillium in blue cheese is safe and doesn’t produce harmful toxins.
Myth: All cheese molds are dangerous.Fact: Blue cheese uses a specific, harmless type of mold, unlike random molds on expired food.
Myth: Blue cheese is unsafe for everyone.Fact: It’s generally safe except for individuals with mold allergies or compromised immune systems.
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Unveiling the Truth: Blue Cheese Myths Debunked

When it comes to understanding blue cheese, questions like “Can blue cheese make you sick?”, “Is blue cheese mold dangerous?”, and “Is blue cheese living?” are often asked.

The fear of getting sick from eating blue cheese stems from a misunderstanding of its unique mold.

Blue cheese is made with Penicillium, a specific type of mold that is entirely safe for consumption.

This mold is not only harmless but also beneficial, contributing to the cheese’s distinct flavor and texture.

The notion that blue cheese mold is dangerous is a common misconception.

Unlike harmful molds that can grow on perishable food items, the Penicillium in blue cheese is carefully cultivated and monitored.

It does not produce the toxins that make foodborne molds dangerous.

Therefore, consuming blue cheese in normal amounts poses no health risks for most people.

However, individuals with mold allergies or weakened immune systems should exercise caution.

Moreover, referring to blue cheese as ‘living’ can be misleading.

While the cheese does contain living mold cultures during its creation, the processes involved in cheese aging and production ensure that it is safe and stable for consumption by the time it reaches your plate.

This balance between cultivating beneficial mold and maintaining food safety is a testament to the meticulous art of cheesemaking.

How Blue Cheese is Made

Final Thoughts

  • The mold in blue cheese, Penicillium, is non-toxic and intentionally added for flavor and texture, similar to the way yeast is used in bread.
  • Unlike harmful molds, Penicillium in blue cheese doesn’t produce dangerous toxins, ensuring safety similar to mold used in antibiotics.
  • The controlled environment of cheese aging prevents the growth of harmful bacteria, akin to how pasteurization makes milk safe.
  • Penicillium in blue cheese contributes to its distinct flavor, comparable to how different yeasts affect beer tastes.
  • Safe cheese molds are a result of centuries-old cheese-making practices, reflecting a deep cultural and historical understanding of food safety.

So, as you can see, blue cheese mold is safe to eat as it is a form of penicillin.

More specifically, Penicillium roqueforti and Penicillium glaucum are used in the production of blue cheese.

Neither of these forms of penicillin produces toxins themselves and are therefore completely safe for human consumption.

There are various health benefits to blue cheese mold.

That being said, you should still always eat blue cheese in moderation, as too much of a good thing can end up being bad for you.

And on the subject of cheese that has potentially gone off, find out if mozzarella does go moldy quicker than others.

How does understanding the safety and health benefits of the mold in blue cheese, affect your willingness to try more of this cheese?

Let us know in the comments below!

Blue cheese mold


  1. What makes blue cheese mold safe? Blue cheese mold is safe due to the specific use of Penicillium, a non-toxic mold.
  2. Is the mold in blue cheese the same as mold on expired food? No, it’s a specific, harmless type used for flavor and texture.
  3. Can blue cheese mold cause allergic reactions? Some individuals may be sensitive, similar to other food allergies.
  4. Does blue cheese mold have health benefits? It can contribute beneficial bacteria, much like other fermented foods.
  5. Can everyone safely eat blue cheese? Most people can, but those with compromised immune systems should be cautious.

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