Brown slime. White fuzz. We’ve all reached into the fridge and pulled out something that looked more like a science experiment than a healthy food. That slime and mold is a healthy diet double-whammy: it wastes money and makes for a less-than-appetizing snack or meal. Check out these easy tips for keeping produce fresh:
This go-to snack can quickly turn to a black mush. The culprit is the crown, or top, of the banana, which gives off a fruit-ripening gas. The key to slowing down the ripening process is to crown them—and we don’t mean topping them with your daughter’s princess tiara.
Simply wrap the banana tops tightly with plastic wrap. Rewrap the plastic each time you remove one from the bunch. This reduces the amount of ripening gas the bananas are exposed to, so they stay fresh longer.
Antioxidant-packed fruits may be A-list health food celebs—but when it comes to staying fresh, they’re definitely on the D-list. Typically berries last only a few days past purchase.
Make berries last up to a week longer by giving them a vinegar bath, a process that destroys the mold and bacteria that jumpstart rot. Fill a bowl with 1 cup of vinegar and 3 cups of water. Add the berries, gently swirling them around. Rinse under running water, and dry completely before placing them in a paper towel-lined container in the fridge.
Winter time is citrus time, especially for those of us in northern climates. In fact, many of us stock up with cases of oranges or grapefruits. The good news is you can keep citrus fresh for long periods, making it easy to enjoy these nutritious, sun-kissed snacks, regardless of the season.
The secret? Keep citrus in the fridge’s fruit and veggie crisper. They should last for 1-2 months, much longer than the 2 weeks they’ll last on the kitchen counter.
Whether you’re a salad nut or just like a green crunch in your sandwiches, you know how frustrating it is to keep those crispy greens from turning to mushy browns. The primary culprit in the brownification of greenery? Moisture.
Keep greens fresh by thoroughly rinsing to remove bacteria. Dry them well, tossing any damaged leaves. Wrap the bunch in a paper towel to absorb extra moisture, and place it in a storage container or plastic bag in the refrigerator. Check the paper towel every day or so, replacing it when it becomes wet.
You don’t need to pickle peppers to extend their shelf life past a few days. Instead, store whole peppers for up to 2 weeks in a plastic bag or storage container in the veggie crisper. Cut peppers spoil quickly, so if you don’t need the entire vegetable, slice only what you need and store the remainder intact in the crisper.
It isn’t hard to keep produce fresh longer. By taking a few extra minutes to prepare fruits and veggies you can keep them funk-free and ready to use in your favorite healthy snacks and recipes.