Spoiled ground beef usually smells sours and feels tacky to the touch. If the ground beef is gray-colored all the way through and does not turn red when exposed to air for 15 minutes, it is likely spoiled.
Ground beef should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit to destroy bacteria inside of it, according to the United States Department of Agriculture. When cooking with ground beef, do not use the same utensils or containers for meat and vegetables. After handling meat, wash all hands and utensils thoroughly in hot water before interacting with other foods. Beef products are susceptible to bacteria such as E. coli, salmonella and listeria.