Do you always toss out half of the groceries you buy, just because you don’t use it on time? Generally, most of us visit the grocery store every 7 days, to stock up on lots of fresh produce, for the whole week. But, due to short shelf life of these food items, they get stale and we have no other option, except to throw them out. It’s really very frustrating to see the wastage of money, which you spend on groceries that never actually reach your plate. So, don’t wait till the food perishes! Use the following easy tips to extend the shelf life of your groceries.
1. Store green onions in Freezer
Completely dry the green onions. Chop them. Put them in an empty plastic water bottle. Store the bottle in the freezer.
2. Keep Potatoes away from Onions
Don’t store potatoes along with onions; otherwise they will get spoiled fast. To prevent sprouting, keep potatoes with apples.
3. Keep Delicate Herbs in a Glass of Water
Cut the stems of delicate herbs (such as asparagus or parsley). Put them upright in a glass of water. Then, cover with a plastic bag. Use rubber band to hold the plastic cover. Put it in the refrigerator.
4. Store Onions in Pantyhose
Place onions in pantyhose. To keep them separate, tie a knot in between each onion. It will keep them fresh up to 8 months.
5. Use Butter to Increase the Shell Life of Cheese
To prevent cheese from drying out, rub small quantity of butter at its cut side. Instead of plastic, use wax paper or cheese paper to wrap the cheese. After wrapping, put it in a plastic bag. Then, keep it in the warmest part of your refrigerator (such as cheese or vegetable drawer).
6. Dump the Rotten Apple
A rotten apple causes the surrounding apples spoil faster. So, trash it immediately.
7. Store Bread in Refrigerator
Don’t leave the bread on the counter, in case you are not going to consume it in a few days. It will begin to grow fungus. The best way to store bread is to keep it in fridge.
8. Cover the Top of a Bunch of Bananas with a Plastic Wrap
Bananas get perished very soon. To store them for some more days than usual, use a plastic wrap to cover the crown of a bunch of bananas. Place them isolated on the counter.
9. Store Salad Lettuce in a Plastic Wrapped Bowl
Put salad lettuce in a bowl. Place a paper towel over it. Then, wrap it with a plastic. It will help in preventing wilting of the leaves, thereby storing them for a long time.
10. Use Paper Bags for Storing Mushrooms
Instead of plastic bags, store mushrooms in a paper bag. Put them either in refrigerator or in cool dry place.
11. Put Ginger in the Freezer
You can keep gingers fresh for a long time, by storing them in the freezer.
12. Don’t Store Tomatoes in Plastic Bags
Always keep unripe tomatoes in a cardboard box (in a single layer) or in a paper bag with their stem side down. Store them with fruits, to ripen faster.
Keep the perfectly ripe tomatoes on the counter, in a single layer, stem side up, not touching one another and away from sunlight.
Put over ripe tomatoes in refrigerator.
13. Wrap Broccoli and Celery in Tin Foil
For keeping broccoli and celery crisp for 4-5 weeks, wrap them in tin foil, before storing in the refrigerator.
14. Store Nuts in Freezer
To keep nuts fresh for longer, put them in Mason jars, and then store in the freezer.
15. Preserve Fresh Herbs in Olive Oil
Fill ice tray with olive oil. Chop the herbs (oregano, thyme, sage, rosemary). Put them in each cube of the tray. Keep the tray in the freezer. It’s also very handy for cooking; just pop one out for instant herb-infused oil.
16. Make Your Berries Last Longer with the Help of Vinegar Solution
Mix vinegar (apple cider or white) and water in 1:10 ratio. Whirl the berries around this mixture. Put them in the fridge. This way, you can store strawberries for 2 weeks and raspberries for a week or more.
17. Loosely Tie the Oily Herbs
Loosely tie the oily herbs (like thyme) together with a string. Hang them in the open air.
18. Use Olive Oil or Lemon Juice to Store Guacamole
Leave the avocado pit in guacamole. While storing it, spray some olive oil or lemon juice on it. Then, wrap with a plastic. Put in the refrigerator. It will prevent it from turning brown.
Some Other Useful Tips
- Don’t cut veggies and fruits, until you don’t need them.
- Cook ‘about to perish’ foods first.
- Store leftovers and chopped vegetables and fruits in air-tight containers.
- Instead of pre-cut fruits and bagged veggies, buy fresh produce that will last longer.
- Store highly perishable products on the middle shelf in your refrigerator. Avoid keeping them in the door (as the temperature remains fluctuating there).
- Use Herb Savor (a gadget) to keep herbs fresh for a long time.
- Purchase an ethylene gas absorber for your refrigerator. It will help to keep you groceries fresh, up to 3 times longer than normal.
- Immediately remove the spoiled and stale food from your refrigerator.
- Don’t over-stock your fridge.
- Don’t place meat and produce in the same drawer.