Proper Storage for Produce

Produce can be finicky.  Most fruits and vegetables are not meant to last more than about 5 to 7 days beyond their purchase date, so knowing the best ways to store them will help you to prevent waste and save you money.

A good deal of fruits and vegetables can be left out on the kitchen counter. If it is not kept refrigerated in your local produce department, then chances are you do not need to do so at home (unless it is your personal preference).  Fruits and vegetables with a thick peel can generally be left out (bananas, oranges, grapefruits, avocados, and cucumbers for example).

Grapes and berries do not need to be kept cold, but if it is your personal preference to have these treats cold, then pop them in the fridge. Berries and grapes also keep well when portioned into small baggies and placed in the freezer, which makes for a nice treat on a hot day or provides convenience for making fruit smoothies.

Leafy greens that are “spritzed” at the store can be treated like cut flowers — trim the stems, place them into a jar with a bit of water, cover with a Ziploc bag, and place in the fridge. Things like bunch spinach, kale, mustard greens, and asparagus can be treated this way. Herbs like humidity, so they can be bagged and left out on the counter (they will keep for about 5 days this way).

Fruits like the humidity low, whereas vegetables like it a bit more humid. So for whatever you place into the crisper drawer, if you are able to adjust the humidity be sure and do so for whatever you are storing.

Those “green bags” and other things claiming to keep produce fresher longer: don’t waste your money! You want your fruits and veggies to be able to breathe, and not close them up in plastic bags. Use these tips and tricks to keep your produce fresher longer and save money at the same time!

Here is a link to my recent TV segment showing you these helpful tips:

And, my thanks to HGTV  for inspiring this idea for a topic. Here is a recently posted short video from their Facebook page on the same topic:

So be sure and treat your produce in they way that it will stay fresh longer, so that you save money from going right into the compost pile!

~ Doneane