Refrigerate Me Not
Most fruits, veggies, meats, cheeses and other foods can be stored safely and happily in the fridge. But there are some foods that should never touch the inside of your refrigerator!
- Potatoes: Spuds don’t belong in the fridge! The cold air breaks down the starches, making your ‘taters sweet and slimy. Try storing them in the pantry instead! (Grab more info at Potato Goodness Unearthed by the United States Potato Board)
- Garlic: Always store garlic on your countertop, in a dry container with good ventilation.
- Tomatoes: Ever noticed tomatoes taste better at room temperature? It’s not a trick; they may go bad faster on the counter, but are so much more delicious while they’re ripe! Refrigeration can also alter the texture causing them to become grainy.
- Onions: Uncut onions can taste moldy out of the fridge. Keep them on the counter, or in a dark cool place! (Moisture is another onion spoiler, best not to store them in a plastic bag.)
- Melon: According to USDA research, the antioxidants in melon stay intact better at room temp. Once cut store them in the fridge but as long as they are whole, counter top it is.
- Bread: Ick, cold, dry bread! I know many of you keep bread in the fridge but this causes it to dry out. If you peek at the storage directions on any almost any bread website, they will tell you this is the worst place to keep bread. Either keep it out, in a bread box, or in the freezer.
- Coffee: (This one actually shocked me… but it’s true according to National Coffee Association USA) Neither beans nor ground coffee should be stored in the fridge or freezer! (Extreme heat or cold is not good for coffee!). The cold may cause condensation in your joe, which will wash the flavor away. Keep it in a pantry or on the counter out of direct sunlight instead. I’m guilty of this one, I’ve always stored it in the freezer!
- Winter squash: Despite their name, the winter squash do not like the cold. Keep them in a pantry or cabinet and they’ll last about a month or so.
- Honey: The refrigerator will harden honey, and not make it last longer. Honey lasts a long time as it is, keep it in the cabinet!
- Oils: Olive oil and other other cooking oils hate the cold. Keep them room temperature.
- Ripen me at room temperature: Anything with a pit should be stored on the counter until they ripen. Only move peaches, avocados, and other stone fruits to the fridge once they’re ripe!
Can but don’t need to be refrigerated items:
Hot sauce: If you’re short on space you can keep your hot sauce in the cabinet, not in the refrigerator! Refrigeration can alter the taste. Because of the salt & acidity in hot sauce it can last years in the cupboard!