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cinnabon rolls and cream cheese icing... is it safe?

destrekor

Lifer
Nov 18, 2005
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No, not "is it safe to eat when they are fresh and hot"... that would be ridiculous.

So here's the situation. I got a little ahead of myself, and bought 2 4-pack boxes at the local Cinnabon. [I couldn't help it, there never was one near me except at airports, and now it's only a few minutes away]

I did not anticipate this before I bought them, but now I am stuck with them. The boxes say:
Do no refrigerate, heat before eating, freeze if storing for more than a few days.

So, if eating tomorrow, they are good to stay out. And you need to freeze them, thaw, and heat, before eating stored ones. Refrigerator is a no-go, apparently.
In my hotel room, I only have a small refrigerator.

Right now I am eating the ones I never cooled, and heating them. At 800 calories a pop, I can't eat all these safely, as in eating them all within 2 or 3 days without cooling them.

The frosting is cream cheese-based, so there is a health concern here. Bugs that can get their way into dairy can be extremely lethal, I do remember that much from food course.

Am I putting my life on the betting table by refrigerating these tasties... if safe, I'll let them thaw to room temp and heat them as the serving directions state, but I'm wondering if there's too high of a risk. I don't want to go killing myself with a bad decision to eat something that could be host to Campylobacter jejuni, Listeria monocytogenes or Clostridium botulinum.
Am I blowing this out of proportion here? Really, I don't want to throw those rolls away. Too damn good, and I saved money by buying them like this versus constantly hitting up the foodcourt.
 

PottedMeat

Lifer
Apr 17, 2002
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it's fine. plus the sugar kills stuff.


you know those cream cheese danishes supermarkets leave out at room temperature for days on end?
 

destrekor

Lifer
Nov 18, 2005
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it's fine. plus the sugar kills stuff.


you know those cream cheese danishes supermarkets leave out at room temperature for days on end?
I know sometimes, with spore-forming creatures, it's not always about where it's at or how long it's been there. It's about the changes.
First, it was cooked. And then left out. And then refrigerated - which for some bugs, only slows growth versus preventing growth (freezing obviously prevents all growth, which is why it is likely stressed).

If you change the environment, it may force already living creatures to form into spores or release toxin. I'm forgetting some of the specifics and which species were involved, but the iirc refrigeration can make it worse in the end. And if something is allowed to make spores, thorough cooking won't destroy the spores. And spores in the intestine = bad news ... sometimes.

Healthy people can survive without any symptoms sometimes, other times they can wind up in the hospital.

And I realize the big warnings from Cinnabon are mostly just PSA-style warnings; they are covering themselves legally, so that any illnesses will rightfully not be blamed on them - since once it leaves their store, anything can happen and the environment may introduce some baddies. But I'm not a fan of blatantly opening myself up to some nasty bugs if it can be easily prevented.

Then again, these things are fucking delicious and I might be willing to permit a small risk.
Because the warnings aren't mostly warnings, right? The rolls obviously still need to come into contact with the baddies that can call it home, right? :)
 

brblx

Diamond Member
Mar 23, 2009
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i would either leave them out or put them in the refrigerator (read: would not give a shit).

then, at a time when i wished to eat cinnamon pastries, i would examine them for signs of being spoiled (read: are there any big green masses growing on them?)

if i determined them to be suitably fresh (read: could not use them as a bludgeoning tool), i would then consume said food.

let me know if you need some chewing instructions.
 

destrekor

Lifer
Nov 18, 2005
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Quit being a wussbag and eat them sissy boy.
One of the problems of finding interest in, and having taken a course in, food science and technology... you can no longer innocently and naively enjoy food without thinking about it.
Minimizing chances of serious illness simply by thinking about food safety...? It helps knowing that good choices prevent major downtime.
 

destrekor

Lifer
Nov 18, 2005
28,799
356
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i would either leave them out or put them in the refrigerator (read: would not give a shit).

then, at a time when i wished to eat cinnamon pastries, i would examine them for signs of being spoiled (read: are there any big green masses growing on them?)

if i determined them to be suitably fresh (read: could not use them as a bludgeoning tool), i would then consume said food.

let me know if you need some chewing instructions.

Cream cheese complicates these things.

Seriously, do people not think about these things? Most of the seriously harmful bugs that would find themselves into food in this way, you would never detect them. Detection of spoilage typically only happen with other invasive bugs, which suck to eat but thankfully are rarely lethal and also give us notice.
Stale bread is hardly a concern. Cream cheese colonized by listeria, not fun I imagine.

I'm still eating these. Hell, may have killed myself last night and it hasn't caught up with me yet - ate some of one without heating it up again.

I rarely stress about these things. But I rarely have food where I'm forced into a position that isn't easily correctable. If I was at home, I'd just throw the extras in the freezer and never question the safety of preparing frozen food.

Who am I kidding. I can't throw these away. I'll just cook them a little longer in the microwave. :D
 

brblx

Diamond Member
Mar 23, 2009
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who eats cream cheese cinnamon rolls, anyway? are you sure you went to cinnabon? i'm pretty sure icing is not milkfat-based.
 

nanette1985

Diamond Member
Oct 12, 2005
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If you've taken food science, then you know that you are looking for the kind of reassurance that no one can give you. Remember that you have no idea how the things were treated back at the store - maybe the person doing the cooking has some rare illness, maybe the cashier sneezed on the right before you came in, maybe the batch of cinnabon preparation materials was contaminated back at the plant, maybe ANYTHING.

In addition, maybe the last person to stay in your hotel room brought some bad bug that's going to kill you, or maybe the hotel water that you brushed your teeth with has rare bacteria. Maybe that airplane food (was there any?) was bad - I wouldn't trust airline food. Maybe that restaurant you'll be lunching at is having a bad kitchen-staff day.

I go by the theory that it's necessary to ingest a wide variety of food in order to expose the body to as many pathogens as possible to get some extra immunity when something major happens.

You can't eat 8 cinnabons in 2-3 days? Beginner.

Enjoy.
 
Jun 19, 2004
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OP, relax. The human race would have died out long ago if food was that dangerous. The types of food born illnesses you listed are unlikely in the food product you're eating and in the case of botulism, impossible. When I say unlikely, I mean the chance of getting hit while crossing the street by a yellow Pinto hatchback is more likely.
 

destrekor

Lifer
Nov 18, 2005
28,799
356
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who eats cream cheese cinnamon rolls, anyway? are you sure you went to cinnabon? i'm pretty sure icing is not milkfat-based.
You've seriously never heard of Cinnabon and their cream-cheese icing?

It's not an issue of "is it safe to eat a cinnamon roll" - it's cream cheese we're talking about here, that has been heated and cooled and left out and cooled some more and maybe heated again.


If you've taken food science, then you know that you are looking for the kind of reassurance that no one can give you. Remember that you have no idea how the things were treated back at the store - maybe the person doing the cooking has some rare illness, maybe the cashier sneezed on the right before you came in, maybe the batch of cinnabon preparation materials was contaminated back at the plant, maybe ANYTHING.

In addition, maybe the last person to stay in your hotel room brought some bad bug that's going to kill you, or maybe the hotel water that you brushed your teeth with has rare bacteria. Maybe that airplane food (was there any?) was bad - I wouldn't trust airline food. Maybe that restaurant you'll be lunching at is having a bad kitchen-staff day.

I go by the theory that it's necessary to ingest a wide variety of food in order to expose the body to as many pathogens as possible to get some extra immunity when something major happens.

You can't eat 8 cinnabons in 2-3 days? Beginner.

Enjoy.
I did plan on that. Then I discovered each one is 800-900 calories and more sugar and carbs than I know what to do with. It's the rare food that I have to have now that it's easy available, but I won't have it much after I'm out of here in a few months.
 

destrekor

Lifer
Nov 18, 2005
28,799
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OP, relax. The human race would have died out long ago if food was that dangerous. The types of food born illnesses you listed are unlikely in the food product you're eating and in the case of botulism, impossible. When I say unlikely, I mean the chance of getting hit while crossing the street by a yellow Pinto hatchback is more likely.
That's why I posted here. The research I've done (in class and of my own volition) was awhile ago, and I can't remember that much about the ones I listed. I know the basics but cannot remember specifics about routes of infestation, the exact nature of their spore-forming and how they react to environmental changes.
I figured someone would know whether it's almost impossible or if there is a bad but statistically significant chance of something nasty.
 

brblx

Diamond Member
Mar 23, 2009
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i'm pretty sure if you nuke a cinnamon roll until the icing is molten lava boiling hot (so, like 7 seconds), nothing is living in it.
 

Maleficus

Diamond Member
May 2, 2001
7,685
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One of the problems of finding interest in, and having taken a course in, food science and technology... you can no longer innocently and naively enjoy food without thinking about it.
Minimizing chances of serious illness simply by thinking about food safety...? It helps knowing that good choices prevent major downtime.
this is clearly not true, otherwise you wouldn't be eating something that is 800 calories a pop.

clearly you are capable of ignoring nutritional information and needs.

clearly.
 

sactoking

Diamond Member
Sep 24, 2007
7,023
1,869
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They say 'Don't refrigerate' not from food safety concerns but b/c when you put them into the fridge they turn into dry lumps that you could build a house with.
 
Jun 19, 2004
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Food science is important in modern manufacturing. We are now creating foodstuffs using processes and equipment totally unknown previously in human history. That said, food is inherently safe. Sugar as well as salt has been used for centuries as a method of food preservation.

Our ancestors were great scientists. Remember, science is 90% observation and people tend to notice if Fred and Wilma croak or, get horrendously sick from eating something.
 

destrekor

Lifer
Nov 18, 2005
28,799
356
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this is clearly not true, otherwise you wouldn't be eating something that is 800 calories a pop.

clearly you are capable of ignoring nutritional information and needs.

clearly.
Nutrition is something I generally take very seriously but dammit, nobody needs to be a stiff about nutrition.
Keep it, on average, fairly balanced, and you can bend the rules from time to time.

For instance: I actually take a low-carb approach very seriously, and strive to eat a lot of good fat and proteins. So yes, a Cinnabon roll is terrible for me. So is the alcohol, so is the pizza, so are the milkshakes. But the majority of the food I eat fits into the main diet/lifestyle I strive to maintain.

Food safety is a binary thing. Nutrition is something that balances and builds, something you technically average out over a week. I sometimes preach nutritional guidelines that I believe in, like my low sugar approach... but I break it from time to time. But hell, that Cinnabon in the end really only has the same amount of sugar as one can of pop - which I enjoy on a rare basis. My stomach usually fights me on those days, since it has slowly grown used to less sugar than I used to consume.
 

nanette1985

Diamond Member
Oct 12, 2005
4,209
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For instance: I actually take a low-carb approach very seriously, and strive to eat a lot of good fat and proteins. So yes, a Cinnabon roll is terrible for me. So is the alcohol, so is the pizza, so are the milkshakes. But the majority of the food I eat fits into the main diet/lifestyle I strive to maintain.
I'm diabetic, so I bet I take low-carb way more seriously than you :D . Anyway, one of the odd things about lower-carb is that if you're going to go carb overload, and cinnabon qualifies nicely here, lots of evidence scientific and anecdotal suggests that doing a lot of carbs all at once, rather than stringing them out over several days, is actually better for you. Just a thought.

Enjoy those cinnabons - eat one for me, because I can't, and I love them!
 

Iron Woode

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 10, 1999
29,111
9,561
136
One of the problems of finding interest in, and having taken a course in, food science and technology... you can no longer innocently and naively enjoy food without thinking about it.
Minimizing chances of serious illness simply by thinking about food safety...? It helps knowing that good choices prevent major downtime.
you are way over-thinking this.

you are not going to die from an infection if you eat them later. You will die because of clogged arteries from eating them.
 

PottedMeat

Lifer
Apr 17, 2002
12,365
471
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i'm pretty sure if you nuke a cinnamon roll until the icing is molten lava boiling hot (so, like 7 seconds), nothing is living in it.
chow down as soon as it exits the microwave, so nothing in your mouth will be living either
 

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