When fresh fruits and vegetables are in season it’s a good idea to stock up on nutritious foods… but what’s the best way to maintain shelf life without throwing away unused or ruined produce?
It’s best to eat your foods fresh, but sometimes storage is necessary, especially if you buy items in bulk from farmers’ markets or the grocery. This guide from Raw Food Health online should help you determine how best to store your fruits and veggies.
• Apples can be placed in the fridge after they’ve been bought or picked in order to prevent them from becoming mushy.
• Apricots can be stored in a paper bag until the desired ripeness and you should eat them within a day or two.
• Berries can be hard to keep fresh for very long, so you should eat them immediately since they only last about three or four days. Fresh blueberries can last about 10 days, though.
• Bananas should be eaten once they have a good amount of brown spots and will remain fresh even when the skins turn completely brown after being placed in the fridge.
• Cherries should last about a week and they can be placed in the fridge for a few days, too.
• Grapefruit can be stored at room temperature and taste best when not chilled, but if needed they can last several weeks in the fridge.
• Grapes can last up to six days if you store them in the fridge.
• Lemons and limes will last about two weeks at room temperature but limes should be refrigerated if you don’t plan to use them immediately.
• Oranges are at their ripest when you pick them or purchase them at the grocery store and they will last a few days at room temperature or a week in the fridge.
• Tomatoes should never be placed in the fridge and they should last at least a week at room temperature.
• Watermelon can be kept uncut for a week at room temperature or they can last a day or two in the fridge.
Overall, you should keep all your fruits and veggies at room temperature when possible to maintain the best flavor. The website also suggests spreading out bulk amounts of items in separate places so they won’t all ripen at the same time. Some can be placed near a window for sun exposure, or stored in a cool dry place like a pantry or basement.