12 Genius Tricks to Keep Your Fruits & Vegetables Fresh Longer

fruit-vegetable-heart-23560151Eating fruits and vegetables is great for your health. But if you end up throwing away more than you eat, you’re not alone. According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, more than 34 million tons of food waste is generated in the U.S. each year, and a whopping 39% of Americans say they feel guilty about wasting food and two-thirds of household food waste is due to spoilage. Here’s how to keep them fresh for a longer period of time.

12 Genius Tricks to Keep Your Fruits & Vegetables Fresh Longer

-Place fresh herbs and leafy greens in a jar or vase of water, just like you would a bouquet of flowers. They’ll last longer and you’ll have a beautifully green arrangement!

-Citrus fruits such as oranges, tangerines, lemons, and limes, will do fine for up to a week in a cool, dark place, away from direct sunlight, but you can lengthen their lives by storing them in the fridge in a mesh or perforated plastic bag.

-Grapes won’t spoil as fast, and will also stay juicy and fresh, if you put them in polyethylene bags or plastic food wrap and place them in the refrigerator.

-Store potatoes with apples to keep them from sprouting, and don’t let them anywhere near your panty-hose onions. Onions will make them go bad faster, but apples are a potatoes best friend!

-Apples are ethylene gas producers so store away from other produce. They can be stored on the counter for up to a week or in the fridge for more than a week.

-Don’t keep your produce in the door of the fridge where temperatures are going to fluctuate. Keep them in the middle or your bottom drawers to keep temps more consistent.

-Store cantaloupe and honeydew loose in the refrigerator, even before they’re cut. Watermelon can be kept in a dark, dry place away from other produce. Keep cut melon in the fridge.

-Bread will last longer if you keep it in the freezer, not the refrigerator. Take out what you need as you go along. It just takes a few minutes to thaw.

-An unripened avocado should be placed in a thick paper bag or wrapped in newspaper and kept at room temperature until it’s ripe. After this point, place it in a plastic bag and keep it in the refrigerator.

-The lower the temperature, the harder it is to retain the aroma and freshness of fruits and vegetables. If you want them to taste great for longer, store them in the part of the refrigerator where the temperature is slightly higher.

-Broccoli is best stored by keeping the stem in fresh water and covering the upper part with a wet towel. The water should be changed regularly and the towel dampened often.

-Submerging mushrooms in water will result in slimy, moldy fungi. Much better to wipe off excess dirt with a damp towel, then transfer mushrooms to a paper bag and store in the produce drawer of the refrigerator.

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