Ever had to pitch a bunch of strawberries or salad that you just bought? We’ve all been there.
Within a few days, what was deliciously fresh is now a stinky, soggy, moldy, mess and my wife and I rock-paper-scissors who has to throw it out and clean it up. Thankfully, I’ve found these 16 ways to help keep food fresher, longer:
1. Ripen Avocados At Room Temperature
Avocados always seem to be either too green or too ripe. Then I learned this trick, leave them out at room temperature and check ripeness everyday by gently squeezing the entire avocado (not just one spot) to see if it’s soft. Once it’s a desired softness, stick in the fridge until you’re ready to use. That will slow the ripening process.
2. Enliven Leafy Greens With Ice Water
If your greens seem a bit wilty when you get them out, dunk them in ice water to help perk them up.
3. Wrap Celery In Tin-Foil
Pop Sugar recommends this trick: the stalks will stay crisper, longer, as the tin-foil allows the ethylene gas to escape away from the stalks.
4. Put Veggies On The Bottom
Storing veggies at the bottom of the fridge (where it’s coldest) will help them last longer.
5. Don’t Separate Bananas Until You Eat Them
According to a test by The Kitchn, bananas that stay together appear to ripen more slowly.
6. Add Some Paper Towels To Your Salad Bag
This helps absorb the excess moisture, which make your leafy greens spoil faster. Patting them dry and perforating the bag (or container) your greens reside in will help them last longer.
7. Rinse Berries With Vinegar
Berries mold because of the mold and bacteria spores on them. Lifehacker says rinsing them in vinegar and water can help keep the germs, making the expensive produce last longer.
8. Stick An Apple In With Your Potatoes
Why? Apples produce ethylene gas, which helps keep potatoes from sprouting.
9. Keep Apples In The Fridge
Ethylene gas is only good helping potatoes last longer, not anything else (see # 8). Keep them away from other fruits and in the fridge, and they’ll last longer.
10. Put Fresh Herbs In Water (Like Flowers)
Fresh herbs are living plants, and are harvested in ways similar to fresh cut flowers. Good Housekeeping says they’ll last longer by snipping the ends and putting them in a cup of water.
11. Freeze Fresh Herbs In Olive Oil
When fresh herbs start to wilt, Good Housekeeping says to chop them up, add a little olive oil, and freeze in ice cube trays. Once frozen, pop them out and store in labeled plastic baggies, Next time you need a little bit of this or that in a recipe, grab it from the freezer.
12. Brown Paper Bag Your Mushrooms
Brown paper bags help wick the moisture away from mushrooms, the main culprit for mushrooms getting slimy, states Good Housekeeping.
13. Keep Tomatoes Room-Temp
Don’t refrigerate them, just don’t…they’re not nearly as tasty.
14. Move These Fruits To The Fridge When Ripe
These fruits should ripen on the counter. When ripe, they can be moved to the fridge, where Pop Sugar says they’ll last a few extra days longer.
15. Remove Anything Going Bad
As soon as you start to see mold on a piece of produce (like strawberry, blueberry, carrot, etc) in it’s container, immediately remove the offender so the mold doesn’t spread.
16. Use This FDA Storage Chart
This handy chart tell you how long you can safely store things in the fridge or freezer.
[h/t: Good Housekeeping]