Microbiologist Investigates After Her Beef Soup Turned Blue In The Fridge

Here's what's going down in the blue beef soup saga.

James Felton

James Felton

James Felton

James Felton

Senior Staff Writer

James is a published author with four pop-history and science books to his name. He specializes in history, strange science, and anything out of the ordinary.

Senior Staff Writer

A bowl of blue soup, topped with cilantro.

The actual soup looks significantly less appetizing. Image credit: Anna_Pustynnikova/

A team of microbiologists has begun an investigation after an assistant professor in biological science at California State University San Marcos discovered that the beef soup she had been keeping in her fridge had turned blue.

Dr Elinne Becket began the "blue soup saga" – or "blue beef soup saga" as it should be known – by informing her followers that a beef soup she had left in the fridge had turned blue, asking what contaminant could have made it change color.


Becket's audience turned out to contain quite a number of microbiologists with an interest in blue soup mysteries. They first demanded a photo of the soup and then wanted samples. Sure enough, Becket delivered nasty photos of a soup that was an inexplicable shade of blue.

Soon enough, several biologists were asking her to sequence it and write a paper on her findings. After more egging on, Becket returned to the trash to fish out a sample, stating that "I was literally dunking q-tips into the soup in a double trash bag while gagging as it was getting all over my arm."

She later retrieved several more samples of the soup, which had been made for her by her mother using a secret recipe. Unless that recipe includes a lot of blue food coloring, the mystery still isn't over. 

Fortunately, Becket and a team of biologists including Sebastian S. Cocioba are going to extreme lengths to crack the case.

Interestingly, Cocioba discovered that microbes in the blue soup form iridescent colonies.

Cocioba is now growing colonies overnight before it can be sequenced, and we will have to await the results. 

However, the team of Twitter scientists have a few suspects, including the bacteria pseudomonas aeruginosa and Pseudomonas fluorescens, which is known to turn soft cheese blue

If it turns out that the pigment is caused by P. aeruginosa, they would have to stop working on the blue soup due to its infectious nature.


 For now, the blue beef soup saga continues.


  • tag
  • bacteria,

  • food,

  • biology,

  • contamination,

  • blue,

  • soup,

  • weird and wonderful