We all know the frustration and guilt that comes from having to throw away fruits and veggies that have gone bad. It’s hard to keep a fridge stocked with healthy produce when produce spoils quickly. One solution is to shop more often and buy smaller quantities of produce, but most of us don’t have time to hit the grocery store more than once a week. There is a solution for you, too, weekly shoppers! Here are six ways to make your produce last longer. The next time you go grocery shopping, you can do so without worrying about throwing away uneaten fruits and veggies.
1. Paper towels are your friends. Wash your produce as soon as you get home, and lay it out to dry on dishtowels or paper towels. Once your salad greens are dry, wrap them in a fresh dishtowel or paper towel and put them in a plastic bag. The paper towel will absorb any extra moisture and keep your lettuce from wilting. If you buy boxed lettuce, spinach or kale, place one paper towel at the bottom of the box and one on top of the greens. Berries also stay fresh longer if you place a paper towel at the bottom of the box.
2. Isolate your bananas. Bananas emit ethylene gas, a ripening agent which causes any nearby produce to ripen quickly. If you want to keep your other countertop fruit from ripening too fast, don’t store them near your bananas. Our Baked Banana Oatmeal is delish!
3. Blanch your greens. Hearty greens such as Swiss chard and bok choy keep longer if you blanch them before putting them away. Boil a pot of water, put in the greens, and remove them as soon as the water comes back to a boil. We think you’ll like this Swiss Chard Simple Sautè Recipe.
4. Roast your veggies. Bell peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms, fennel, carrots are all delicious roasted. If they’re are starting to turn, throw them in a pan with olive oil, salt, and pepper and cook them on high heat. You can add herbs and spices for some extra pizzazz. They’ll last at least a week or two. Try our Italian Roasted Vegetables with Summer Basil.
5. Freeze, freeze, freeze. If your fruit is perfectly ripe and you’re afraid you won’t eat it soon, put it in the freezer. Frozen bananas, grapes, and berries are fantastic in smoothies or on their own. You can even take the opportunity to make some popsicles! We have 11 Juicy Sweet, Icy Cold Popsicles to get you started.
6. Take up canning. Canning can be time-consuming, but it’s worth it. Can your favorite fruits and veggies when they’re in season and eat them all year long. Try our Homemade “Canned” Dried Tomatoes and see what you think.
How do you make your produce last longer? Let us know by writing a comment!
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