Groceries are essential in our lives nowadays. It is composed of non-perishable items
such as butchers, delis, bakeries, and fresh produce, which our family utilizes for several days or weeks. We invest our money in groceries because we don't want our family to starve and develop health problems in the long run.
The concept of a self-serving grocery store started in 1916 in Tennessee, USA. After that, it began to spread to the whole wide world. People love to shop at the grocery stores, and this has become a time for family bonding.
The shelf-life of the groceries is limited. Thus, proper handling and storage is a must to make it fresh and safe for consumption.
Here are some of the tips on how to make your groceries last as long as possible:
Tips to Make Groceries Last
- Store herbs in pots filled with sand instead of putting them in the fridge. To do this, grab a flower pot, put your herbs, and cover its roots with sand. Place your pot of herbs in a cool and dark area, and take them out when you need them. This tip is from Doorsixteen and DIY and Crafts.
- If you don't have a pot, you can still keep your herbs in the fridge, according to Thekitchn and DIY and Crafts. However, make sure that it is covered with plastic wrap and secured with a rubber band. This tip is excellent for keeping your chives, cilantro, asparagus, parsley, and basil. Investing in Herb Savor is a must too. It is an innovation that can help preserve the herbs for three weeks longer. The Herb Savor can be put in the fridge.
- Another method is to cut the herbs, according to Thekitchn and put them on an ice cube tray. Next, add some olive oil and freeze it. Once they are frozen, take them out and place them on your food.
- If you have bought oilier herbs such as thyme, it is recommended to tie them together and hang them to get air. These herbs can be hung on the pantry or kitchen wall, and no need to put them in the fridge.
- Store ginger in the freezer and not in any part of the fridge. According to Lowcarbdiets, doing this tip will make the ginger easy to grate. It can preserve it longer as well.
- Tomatoes must be stored in paper bags and not in plastic. The ethylene in tomatoes will make them ripen and spoil faster. Make sure not to keep ripe tomatoes in the fridge but instead store them in a place with room temperature and away from the sunlight. Meanwhile, if the tomatoes you have are not yet ripe, keep them with another fruit to help ripen faster.
- When storing green leafy vegetables, make sure that they are wrapped in aluminum foil and stored in the fridge's crisper drawer. The foil will keep the vegetable crisp even up to 4 weeks. Another tip is to add a paper towel to your greens before storing them. The paper towels will absorb the moisture that causes the vegetables to go wrong. Adding a paper towel will make the vegetables last a little longer than the traditional method of storing them.
- Vegetables like carrots, parsnips, rutabagas, and turnips can be stored in a pot filled with sand to make it fresh for weeks. You don't have to put it in the fridge. Make sure that the pot is stored in a cool, dry place and away from the rays of the sun.
- Onions can be stored in many ways. You can use pantyhose (old or new) and tie a knot between each onion. Next, hang the onions in your kitchen wall or pantry. Another method is to put them in water bottles. Cut the green onions into tiny pieces and put them inside the water bottles.
- If you don't have a fridge, make sure that you don't store potatoes and onions together because the potatoes will spoil faster. Store the onions in a cool and dry place and keep the potatoes away from them. Please put it on a separate shelf.
- For berries, one way to make them last longer is to soak them in vinegar before putting them in the fridge. To do this, add vinegar and water to a clean bowl. Soak the berries in it for few minutes and rinse it with water. Store the berries in a clean container and put them in the fridge. According to Passionforsavings, berries can last up to two weeks using this tip.
- Store the apple with potatoes on a shelf. Apples will keep the potatoes from sprouting, and it will keep them fresh much longer, according to Rubbercowgirl. In addition, check your apples from time to time and make sure that you remove one rotten apple so it won't affect the bunch, according to Thedailymeal.
- According to Snapguide, bananas' crown must be wrapped with plastic. This will prevent it from browning. Also, make sure that bananas are not stored in the fridge with other fruits and vegetables because they will produce a large amount of ethylene gas and make other fruits spoil faster.
- Ripe bananas can still be helpful, according to Shockinglydelicious. Instead of throwing these ripe bananas, turn them into a delicious muffin. To do this, peel it, cut it, and wrap it in plastic. Store it in the freezer and use it as one of the main ingredients to bake for your muffins or cake.
- When you decide to cut your fruit and reserve some for the next day, you can soak it in lemon and store it in the fridge. To do this, cut the fruits and add some ginger ale, orange juice, or lemon-lime in a clean bowl. Soak the fruits for 15 minutes, strain, and let them dry. This tip will prevent the fruits from browning and keep them fresh for a more extended period than the traditional method.
- Honey is one of the groceries that can be stored for a more extended period. However, it crystallizes quickly. So to make it fresh after refrigerating, place the jar of honey in a glass container and add water on the bottom. Next, put it in the candle warmer to de-crystallize the honey. This tip will warm the honey, enable easy pouring, and make it fresh once again.
- To keep the milk from spoiling, make sure that you keep it in the middle of the fridge and not in the door. Milk needs a cooler temperature, and the middle part of the fridge is the best place for it.
- Add a pinch of salt in a carton of milk and heavy cream to make it last longer. The salt will not affect the taste of the milk or the cream, and it will keep it fresh.
- It can still be transformed into an edible pastry for stale bread that is a few days past its selling date. The tip is to rub it with an ice cube and bake at 200 degrees for 12 minutes. According to Real simple, bread with mold should not be eaten anymore but only a few days past the expiration. This tip will make the bread tasty, soft, and fresh.
- According to Passionforsavings, a loaf or a pre-sliced sandwich bread must be stored in a container or paper bag to make it fresh. Meanwhile, crustier slices of bread such as Artisanal bread should be stored in plastic bags to prevent it from becoming spongy.
- Sugar and flour can be stored in the freezer to keep them fresh for a long time. This tip, according to Ehow, will make the flour and sugar last even up to 6 months. These products will not freeze, so you don't need to thaw them after freezing.
- For storing a block of cheese, according to Thedailymeal, make sure that you add some butter to it. Put the butter on the cut side of the cheese. This tip will help keep the cheese from drying out. Store the cheese in the fridge, and you'll never have a problem cutting it and storing it for a more extended period.
- Another method for storing cheese is to wrap it in wax paper and store it in a plastic bag. Keep the cheese in the warmest area of the fridge, like in the vegetable bin or the door, according to Thekitchn and DIY and Crafts.
- Contrary to common belief, eggs must be stored on the middle shelf and not in the fridge's door. Make sure to use an egg tray when storing. This tip will make the eggs last for up to 4 weeks compared to storing them in the door. Although modern fridge nowadays has egg holders in the door, still it is best to keep the eggs on the middle shelf, according to DIY and Crafts.
- According to Buzzfeed, when you have leftover guacamole (a mixture of avocado and other ingredients), you can store it in the fridge and consume it the following day. Spray some olive cooking oil on it or cooking spray and cover it with plastic.
- Mushrooms must be stored in a paper bag rather than a plastic bag to make it fresh, according to Buzzfeed.
- In storing nuts, make sure that you roast them first and then freeze them. To roast the nuts, spread them on the cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Once cooled, put them in the freezer bag and put them in the fridge.
- Raisins can be stored in mason jars with a tight cover. When the raisins are hard, before you even put them in the jar, soak them first in the water and boil them for few minutes. After that, drain it and keep it in the jar.
- When you open a big can of tomato sauce but you only need a spoon from it, make sure that you freeze the rest of it. To do this, dollop the tomato sauce on the wax paper and freezer bag and put it in the freezer. You don't have to thaw it whenever you need it, and you need to peel the wax paper from the freezer bag.
- Raw meat, seafood, and poultry must be stored on the fridge's bottom shelf so the juices won't drip and affect other foods inside. This tip will also prevent contamination of other items.
- Store asparagus-like flowers. Cut its stems and place them in a container with water. Next, cover it with plastic, seal it with a rubber band, and put it in the fridge according to Alwaysorderdessert.
Storage tips and other accessories
- Reduce the clutter in your fridge by removing expired food or products from it, according to moneytalknews. This tip will enable circulation of the air and protect the freshness of the products inside. Make sure that you clean your fridge at least once a week.
- You can also invest in Produce bags, according to BuzzFeed. These produce bags will prevent vitamin loss and excess moisture of the fruits inside the fridge and make them fresh for a longer time.
- Invest in ethylene gas absorbers for your fridge. This product can absorb the ethylene gas coming from the fruits and vegetables and make it fresh than traditional ways.
- Use mason jars instead of plastic bags for storing other grocery items inside your fridge. Mason jars will keep it fresh, and it will not stain your product.
- Organize and learn where to store groceries in their proper place. Fruits and vegetables should be stored in the pantry or counter. Green leafy vegetables and herbs must be stored in the fridge, according to Thevspotblog.
- Check the temperature of your fridge before you put groceries on it. Make sure that it is 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below, according to Squawkfox. Always remember not to mix all of your food items and put them in order.
- When you use plastic bags, make sure that you poke some holes to let the air pass on the product.
In sum, making your groceries last longer will help you save your time, effort, and money. You won't need to go to the grocery store from time to time whenever you need something for your menu.
Also, storing groceries properly can help you make quick and easy meals for your family. In addition, you'll be prepared in times of emergencies and be able to survive. Orient yourselves with the tips mentioned above and share them with your friends. You can use this immediately and learn to live with it until the very end.