From bananas to milk: How to keep your groceries fresh for longer

Nov 27, 2019
You can stoping wasting food (and money) by learning a few simple food storage tips. Source: Getty

There’s nothing worse than bringing home a bag full of groceries from the supermarket, only to find they’ve gone bad a few days later. With a few simple food storage tips, you can stop wasting food (and money). Read on to learn how you can hack your way to longer-lasting groceries.

Milk

Milk has a notoriously short shelf life, but adding a teaspoon of baking soda or a pinch of salt to your milk will make it last longer. The minerals found in salt preserves the milk and keeps it from spoiling as quickly. Try storing milk at the back of your fridge where the temperature is most consistent, rather than in the door.

Onions

Extend the life of your onions and store them in a stocking leg. Why? Keeping individual onions tied up inside their own section of stocking will keep them dry and ventilated. Simply drop an onion into the foot of an old pair of pantyhose and tie a knot. Continue adding onions until both legs are full.

Bananas

Unfortunately, bananas have a tendency to ripen quickly and if you’re not careful you could be potentially throwing away perfectly good food. Wrapping your bananas in cling wrap as soon as you get home will slow down the ripening process and keep them fresh for longer.

Like many other fruits, bananas naturally produce gases while they ripen. Left naturally, the gas spreads to the fruit, helping it ripen faster. By using cling wrap or Saran wrap, you’re trapping the gas so it can’t reach the other pieces of fruit and thus slowing down the ripening process.

If that fails, overripe bananas can be used to make banana bread, so there’s no need to throw them away if they start to go brown.

Strawberries

While they’re certainly delicious, strawberries often go bad after a day or so, but with this tip, you can extend their life! Soak the strawberries in about three cups water and one cup vinegar for five minutes, then rinse. Next, store the strawberries in a container lined with paper towels, and your berries will last up to two weeks. The theory is the vinegar destroys bacteria and mould spores on the strawberries, helping them stay fresh longer.

Salt

To keep salt from drawing moisture and clumping together, add a few grains of uncooked rice into the shaker. The rice grains will soak up any excess moisture and keep it salt dry – just be sure the grains of rice aren’t small enough to fit through the salt shaker.

Bread

This might sound strange, but if your bread is starting to go stale, just add a stick of celery to the plastic bag and let it sit overnight. The bread should absorb the moisture from the celery stick.

Alternatively, bread will keep for up to three months in the freezer, but its quality can be affected by freezer burn. So it’s a good idea to make sure the packaging is secure – try wrapping the bread tightly in plastic wrap and then resealable freezer bags before storing it in the freezer.

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