how to store your produce

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created October 27, 2012 at 5:29 PM

this might sound dumb.. but should i keep my vegetables out in the open or put them in the refrigerator?

when i put my veggies in the fridge after a 5-7 days they seem to get flimsy and soft. especially carrots and beets



on October 27, 2012
at 11:13 PM

Make sure you are using the crisper drawer for your veggies, and that the vent on the side is mostly closed. I think most fresh produce is intended to be consumed within 3-4 days, buying less, more often (I know, it is a pain) will get you better results. If I know I'm not going to make that deadline, I'll sometimes blanch things in salt water and freeze them.

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on October 27, 2012
at 07:11 PM

Depends on the vegetables, and also how long you plan on waiting before you use them

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6 Answers



on October 27, 2012
at 08:27 PM

Really nice list of how to store various kinds of vegetables, including which veggies like humidity & which don't:




on October 28, 2012
at 05:54 PM

I'd skip how to store your produce and immediately get to prepping them. Once you have them cut and stored, it's almost a given that you'll use them because you don't have to do any extra work besides cook them.



on October 27, 2012
at 08:21 PM

Use all your fresh vegetables within a week, because their vitamin and mineral contents degrades significantly from the time the veggies are harvested, unless they're flash-frozen soon afterwards. That said, there are a couple of storage technologies that can extend the shelf life of your produce. GreenBags are good for most veggies:

  • carrots
  • uncut tomatoes
  • celery

For veggies with the highest water content, like bean sprouts, mushrooms, cut cucumbers, cut bell peppers, the re-usable Chico Bag is my choice; it allows a lot of airflow. I've kept mushrooms usable up to 2 weeks in them.


on October 27, 2012
at 07:56 PM

I keep most veggies in the fridge to keep them crisp. (The tomatoes are on the counter, but they are technically a fruit. I think they lose their flavor if refrigerated.) I probably would try to use what I buy within a week because they will eventually go bad even if refrigerated, as some mushrooms and avocados in mine will attest to. Some things you might not be able to use within a week but most refrigerators are equipped with a vegetable drawer that regulates the humidity to help keep them fresh for longer periods.



on October 27, 2012
at 07:56 PM

I store my carrots and beets in refrigerator, in the crisper. I have learned that you need to line the crispers with a couple of layers of paper towels because they absorb moisture. Since those paper towels get moldy quite fast, you need to change the paper towels on a regular basis. I also put my carrots in a brown bag first and then in a crisper lined with paper towels. It is important not to wash carrots prior to storing.

My parents keep carrots in big crates full of sand in their cold basement (they do not have a big fridge where they live).

If you have any parsley, it is best to wash parsley first, then spin-dry it and then put in plastic containers - greens keep well when they are moist.



on October 28, 2012
at 04:20 PM

I'd second the Green Bags. They don't prevent nutrition loss of course, but they do keep most any kind of produce from going bad. The bags are kind of expensive, but I've found them worth it since they are reusable.

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