It’s one of the greatest inventions for preventing food spoilage. But did you know that refrigeration could actually cause certain foods to spoil faster?
The cold air also draws out moisture and kills the flavor of some delightfully sweet and savory foods:
1. Bananas – It may seem contrary but storing bananas in the refrigerator can actually disrupt the ripening process. However, once ripe, peeling and freezing bananas is a great addition to a delicious frothy shake!
2. Avocados – Much like the banana, refrigeration shuts down an avocado’s ripening enzymes. Caveat here is an already ripe avocado or any leftover guacamole will benefit from the cold – but seriously, do we ever have any leftover guac?
3. Tomatoes – Ever been amazed by the juicy flavor of a tomato right out of the fridge? Yeah, me either. Tomatoes actually lose their flavor and become mushy when refrigerated… Eew.
4. Apples – Like tomatoes, they lose their texture and flavor when refrigerated. If you prefer your apples cold, place it in the fridge 20 minutes before eating.
5. Coffee – Contrary to popular belief, coffee is best stored at room temperature, which allows the natural oils within the coffee bean to activate its pungent aromatic scent. Mmmm, I love the smell of coffee!
6. Sweet Potatoes – Cold temperatures and potatoes do not mix. The starches will turn to sugar, disrupting their flavor and texture. Plus, these chemical changes can potentially wreak havoc on your digestion.
7. Onions – Interested in having everything in your fridge smell like an onion? No? Good – try storing them in a paper bag within a cool, dark cabinet for maximum shelf life.
8. Fresh Garlic – Garlic lovers beware! Once again refrigeration spoils the flavor and ruins the texture… store up to 2 months in a cool, dark pantry.
9. Winter Squash – Mushy gourds are only good if you’ve purposefully mashed the roasted flesh with savory spices… mushy right from the fridge? No, thank you!
10. Basil and other fresh herbs – Confession: I must stop doing this immediately! Instead let’s start storing fresh herbs in a water glass on the counter – or grow your own herbs in pots or a garden to be picked and used as needed.
11. Honey – Storing nature’s nectar in the fridge causes crystallization, which is fine if you like crunchy honey. Tightly seal honey jars and you can store them at room temperature forever. Literally.
12. Citrus: Lemons, limes, and oranges – cold air damages the quality of these fruits and can dry them out. A dry Chardonnay, okay. A dry OJ, no way!
Do a kitchen sweep today and start protecting your purchases – and your taste buds!