Ways to Make Your Produce Last Longer

by Merissa on February 25, 2014

in Featured, Frugal Living Tips

How to Make Your Produce Last Longer - Little House Living

Ways to Make Produce Last Longer

 Have you ever gotten a great deal on produce from the store, only for it to go bad on you faster that you can eat it? This article will hopefully give you some ideas on how to get that produce to last longer, until you can get around to eating it! Usually when I buy produce in bulk I like to either can or dry it (or freeze it depending on what kind of produce!) And you can always re-grow produce indoors! But of course we also buy fruit and veggies that we want to eat fresh! Here are some things you can do to make your produce last longer.

Onions: Tie them up in panty hose!

Lettuce: Skip iceberg lettuce altogether and buy romaine hearts. They last much longer! You can also make up salads ahead of time in glass jars with lids and they will stay good for a week in the fridge. Romaine hearts usually last about a month on average for me!

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Bananas: If you've ever purchased organic bananas from the store you know that they wrap plastic wrap over the ends, this makes them last longer since they aren't sprayed!

Herbs: Snip ends and store upright in a glass jar (like you would flowers in a vase).

Garlic: Store in a brown paper bag.

Avocados: Store in a brown paper bag, just like Garlic.

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Citrus: Store in the fridge if you have room and in a cool, dark room if you don't.

Apples: Store just like citrus. These will last really long in the fridge, but if you don't have room you can store in a cool dark place.

Any Produce: Give a quick vinegar bath to your produce when you bring it home, then rinse before storing. Make sure to dilute your vinegar so your produce doesn't taste pickly! (You can use either white or apple cider vinegar for this.)

You can also purchase something that absorbs the ethylene gas that produce puts off. I've used both mesh produce bags and Blue Apples. (I prefer Blue Apple.)

If you use cold storage make sure to store your produce properly. I've made a handy post with all kinds of tips on cold storing produce.

Even if your produce did go bad you can always find things to do with foods scraps, use old grapefruits to clean your bathroom, or feed it to your chickens!

What things do you do to make produce last longer?

merissabio

Featured on: InspiringCooks.com

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Linda February 11, 2013 at 10:32 am

I believe you meant to say store salad in jars in the frig not freezer, am I right?

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2 Merissa February 11, 2013 at 10:53 am

Yes, I did, fixed!

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3 Heather @ My Kansas Life February 11, 2013 at 10:50 am

I use “forever” bags, which work great on lettuce and other leafy greens in the fridge. They had them for free at Menards once or I never would have tried them, but they do work very well!

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4 Jackie February 11, 2013 at 5:31 pm

Thanks, this is something I’m always working on.

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5 Cindy S February 25, 2014 at 8:16 am

Is there a particular temp that works best for storing apples? I stored 2 crates in the basement this year, which I thought was cool enough, but they have not held over well at all. Immediately started shrinking up and now some are going bad. It is a limestone basement and is dry. I would guess the temp to be about 55 degrees but I haven’t checked it to be exact.

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6 Merissa February 25, 2014 at 8:19 am

The perfect temp to store apples is about 32 degrees.

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7 Tracy Fredrychowski March 2, 2014 at 5:55 am

What great ideas! I love the lettce tip since that is the one produce I struggle with keeping fresh before we eat it all.

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8 mary March 3, 2014 at 9:22 am

thanks for all your tips! Just one thing…you don’t put avocados in a brown bag to keep them longer…you put them there to help them ripen up.

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9 amy sue March 5, 2014 at 12:16 pm

I (happily) came across LHL today and have really enjoyed reading and pinning away! My husband’s job has us (& teenage daughter) on the move a lot(!!) … we bought our 1st travel trailer a year ago and LOVE the lifestyle!

I try and make all of our foods the old fashion way ~ from scratch using whole foods! ;) Here’s one of my dilemmas … our current trailer has the typical SMALL fridge. I’ve always stored my produce as the grocers do & yet you suggest refrigerating citrus and apples. Do they taste better & last longer that way?

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10 Merissa March 5, 2014 at 1:55 pm

Yes, both citrus and apples last much longer when stored in the fridge. I don’t have much room in my fridge for fresh foods either but I just end up having to shop a bit more right now. When stored at fridge temp (around 32 degrees) apples and citrus can last for months.

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