Frugal Living

How To Store Produce To Make It Last

I feel like I’ve finally gotten a handle on storing produce so that it lasts more than a few days! Over the last year or so, I’ve figured out a few tips and tricks that extend the shelf life of my fruits and veggies.

This is just what works for me in the climate where I live. You might need to adjust or do a little trial and error, but I think most of these tips will be helpful for anyone.

Grapes: Rinse in a colander and transfer to a dish towel. Pat dry. Store in a covered dish in the fridge.

Extra tip: my family is much more likely to eat grapes out of the fridge if I’ve removed them from the stems. They can just reach in the bowl and grab a handful – and this seems to make the grapes disappear a lot faster.

Blueberries: Store the berries in the fridge, keeping them in the clamshell container from the store. Line the inside of the container with a paper towel. Wash the berries just before using them.

Lettuces: I’ve found that all lettuces do best when I add paper towels to the container. Some lettuces like leaf or romaine need to be washed, dried, and transferred to a container or large resealable bag. Lettuces like spinach or spring mix will be fine in the bag they came in, closed with a chip clip.

Strawberries: Rinse in a colander, then soak them in a mixture of vinegar and water. I use 1/4 cup white vinegar and 1 cup water. Swirl the berries around in the vinegar mixture, then rinse again in the colander.

Transfer the berries to a dish towel (I have a thick black one I use for this – don’t use your grandmother’s vintage white ones) to dry. They don’t have to be completely dry. Remove the stems and slice the berries into bite size pieces.

Store the berries in a jar (you can even repurpose a glass pasta sauce jar) and keep it in the fridge. I like to add a paper towel in the jar to soak up the excess moisture.

Cumbers: Rinse and pat dry with a cloth or paper towel. Wrap whole cucumbers in a paper towel, and store them in a resealable container in the door of your fridge. Slice or chop the cucumbers just before using them.

Tomatoes: Rinse and allow to dry. Store at room temperature. Small tomatoes, like grape or cherry, should be stored in a shallow dish so they can be in a single layer.

Avocados: Want them to ripen quickly? Store them on the counter, close to other produce like tomatoes. Want to slow the ripening process? Store in the fridge.

Green Onions: Rinse and pat dry. Cut the onion stems in half, separating the green part from the white part. Wrap the whites and the greens in separate paper towels and store in a ziploc bag in the fridge.

Whatever fruit I’m planning to pack in lunches gets automatically chopped and stored in a container. Right now we’re doing grapes or pineapple for school lunches, so I always have a stash of those containers ready to go in the fridge.

What’s your best trick for extending the shelf life of your produce? Leave it in the comments so we can all learn from each other!

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7 thoughts on “How To Store Produce To Make It Last

  1. Great tips! I also use the vinegar wash for my strawberries. I usually try to buy organic strawberries but lately they have been moldy at the grocery store!


  2. Freeze your grapes. They keep forever that way and make a nice summer time treat-I love fresh grapes but I live alone so when I get a bunch, probably half of them get frozen. It’s almost like a bite size slushy.


      1. It’s my favorite thing to do-it can even rescue some that are a little less firm than I like to eat. It’s also handy when you have a co-op type thing and get a lot of them.


  3. I have not tried using the jars or the vinegar for washing strawberries! Interesting! I’ll have to give it a try. But I do wash/prep our fruit and veggies when I come in from the store so my family will eat it up. Otherwise, it’s like they can’t even see it in the fridge if they have to wash it. 🤷‍♀️😁


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