What Does Mold On Bread Look Like? 3 Dangerous Mold Strains

Last Updated on March 17, 2022

What does mold on bread look like? Believe it or not, there are many kinds of mold and many hazards involved if consumed!

Today, we will have an in-depth look at exactly what bread mold is, the different strains you can find, and what each looks like. We will even discuss the potential side effects of consuming each. Ready to get started?

What Is Mold?

The simplest answer is that mold is a type of fungus. These fungus spores are everywhere! But, once they are exposed to favorable conditions, they multiply to such an extent that you can visibly see them. At this stage, we start referring to them as mold.

These multicellular hyphae need 3 things to survive; oxygen, food sources, and warmth. By even only exposing them to one of these elements, they will rapidly multiply and consume the entire product.

Today, we will specifically discuss tasty bread mold, the bane of our existence!

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What is bread mold?

As we already know, mold is a type of fungi, just like mushrooms. And, these fungi are living organisms that thrive on spoiling food items. So, as bread starts deteriorating, the fungus spores start multiplying (because they have an optimal amount of food) and they eventually turn into visible mold.

The exact strain or type of mold you will see on your bread will depend entirely on which strain was present from the start.

Most molds are relatively harmless and may only cause slight side effects if any. But, what makes mold so extremely dangerous is that some strains are deadly and it is nearly impossible to tell them apart by eye.

This is exactly why today’s article “What does mold on bread look like?” is so extremely important.

What Does Mold On Bread Look Like? What Color Is It?

There are many different strains of fungus that can be found on bread. So, this also means that these molds will look completely different from one another.

Luckily, we can narrow the molds down to 3 main strains that you are most likely to come across. These include black mold, Penicillium mold, and Cladosporium mold. Let’s have a look at the characteristics of each.

Black bread mold

Black bread mold is the type of mold you often see on a slice of bread that has a fuzzy appearance. Despite the name, this mold isn’t only black. You will often see shades of blue and green when the mold initially appears. This mold does eventually turn completely black.

This black mold also often appears on many fruits and vegetables. They thrive in moist and humid environments, which is why it is important to correctly store the bread to prevent its growth.

What happens if you eat bread with mold on it

Cladosporium bread mold

Cladosporium bread mold appears on the bread in dark green or black patches. This strain is much less fuzzy than the black mold we mentioned above. It also is accompanied by an extremely strong rotting smell.

This mold strain usually affects people with allergies more severely than others.

Penicillium bread mold

Penicillium bread mold is white, grey, or light blue. It also has a fuzzy texture but the light color is what makes it very different from black mold.

It is usually not dangerous when digested, but you should still avoid taking that risk! If this strain grew on the surface of fruits or vegetables, you could potentially simply wipe it off, but with bread, it isn’t that easy. The spores are usually embedded into the bread and not only on the surface.

Is the white stuff on bread flour or mold? How to tell the difference?

This is another reason it is important to know what does mold on bread looks like. Often people confuse flour and bread mold, seeing as they both are white and can look fuzzy.

To test which is which, scrape some white powder off of the bread’s surface. First, flour will easily scrape away and fall on the surface as a powder. Mold will usually merge together and become gooey.

Next, you can rub the powder between your fingers. Again, flour will remain dry and powdery. Mold will bind together and become one piece.

What Happens If You Eat Moldy Bread?

It’s always best to discard bread with mold on it, no matter what type of mold it is! But, some molds cause less severe symptoms.

Consuming bread with mold on it can cause an allergic reaction. This mostly depends on the strain consumed, the persons’ sensitivity, and the amount of mold consumed. As we have said, Cladosporium mold does tend to cause more severe reactions in people that are already prone to allergies.

Black bread mold is not dangerous for most people, but it can be for some.  Black mold can cause nausea, indigestion, or vomiting. Again, it depends on the amount you have consumed.

Cladosporium mold often causes sneezing, wheezing, and coughing. The strong smell does cause vomiting in some cases. This mold is not life-threatening, but once again, has side effects. So, it is best to avoid it completely.

What Does Mold On Bread Look Like The First Two Days?

Bread mold spreads because of mold spores. So, the initial formation of mold is sometimes barely noticeable. Small patches of fuzz start forming on the surface of the bread, often still light in color or completely white.

Often, many people don’t even see the mold because the texture of the bread is very similar to it.

What does mold on bread look like after 1 week?

After a while, the color starts developing on the mold and it begins taking on a larger form. Depending on the environment the bread is stored at, you can also expect the entire slice to be covered in fuzzy black, green, white, or blue mold.

Best Way To Store Bread To Avoid Mold On Bread

Unfortunately, mold is inevitable and you can’t avoid it forever. But, we can delay the growth of these spores.!

The best way to store bread is in a cool dark place. This will prevent humid environments, hot temperatures, and moisture from feeding the spores so that they can grow.

Placing a loaf of bread in the fridge or freezer is also not a bad idea. But, the fridge won’t completely keep the spores away.

What Does Mold On Bread Look Like? Wrapping It Up!

So, what does mold on bread look like? It depends entirely on the strain present on a specific loaf. But regardless, just avoid consuming any type of mold you see on bread!

If you found this article insightful, we have a ton more on our website that will expand your food knowledge considerably!


How can you tell if bread is moldy?

After a couple of days, you will start seeing a fuzzy fluff appear on the surface of the bread. It will eventually expand and cover the entire slice. Then, the color will also change and can be anything from black, green, blue, grey, and white.

Is the white stuff on my bread mold or flour?

While both are white and often have a similar fuzzy appearance, you can test the difference by scraping it off of the bread. Flour remains a powdery consistency while the mold will merge together and form a clump. The same will happen if you rub the white stuff between your fingers.

What happens if you eat bread with mold on it?

The side effects of consuming mold will depend on the strain consumed, your sensitivity to allergens, and the amount of mold you have consumed. Side effects can range from virtually nothing, to mild cramps, to severe vomiting and nausea.

What color is mold on bread?

It depends entirely on the strain of mold present on your bread. Black mold usually starts as white, but develops into blue, green, and eventually, black. Cladosporium mold is dark green or black. And finally, Penicillium mold has lighter colors, often white, grey, blue, and green.

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