Are you the kind of person who throws everything in the refrigerator when you get home from groceries? You may be surprised that some of the produce you often put in the refrigerator really shouldn’t go anywhere near it. Here’s a quick guide of what you should keep in your pantry:
Tomatoes kept in the fridge lose their texture and flavor. And will begin to rot much quicker than if left at room temperature.
“Tomatoes are chilling sensitive at temperatures below 10°C (50°F) if held for longer than 2 weeks or at 5°C (41°F) for longer than 6-8 days. Consequences of chilling injury are failure to ripen and develop full color and flavor, irregular (blotchy) color development, premature softening, surface pitting, browning of seeds, and increased decay (especially Black mold caused by Alternaria spp.) explains Trevor V. Suslow and Marita Cantwell
Department of Plant Sciences, University of California, Davis (1).
This amazing syrup actually crystallizes and thickens in the refrigerator. Instead, keep it in a closed glass jar at room temperature.
Garlic can sprout and grow mold if kept in the refrigerator. Instead, keep it in a brown paper bag or in a terra cotta garlic keeper.
Coffee neutralizes odors and absorbs humidity. If kept in the fridge, coffee loses its great flavor and starts to taste stale.
Left in the fridge, bread gets dry, stale and hard. Keep fresh bread in a paper bag with a towel wrapped around it, this helps keep moisture in the bread.
6. Hot Sauce
Unless specified on your bottle, hot sauce should be kept in your cupboard. Most high quality hot sauces can last up to three years without refrigeration.
Like garlic, onions get mouldy and mushy when refrigerated. Instead, keep them in a brown paper bag with holes punched in. They should keep at least 3 months if left in a cool, dark place.
Basil stored in the fridge will absorb other odors and wilt quickly. Instead, snip off the bases of the stems and place in a mason jar with an inch or two of water, as you would a fresh bouquet. Store at room temperature in a light area but out of direct sunlight.
U.S. Department of Agriculture researchers found watermelons stored at room temperature have significantly more antioxidants and other nutrients than watermelons kept in the refrigerator (2).
Potatoes can lose their flavor when stored in the fridge. Instead, they should be kept in a brown bag in a dark, dry and cool pantry.
11. Olive Oil
If refrigerated, olive oil will condense and harden, giving it a butter-like consistency. Keep it in your pantry instead.
Squash kept in the refrigerator will only last about a week or two, compared to up to 3 months if kept in a cool, dark place. If you have many gourds, keep them in a wooden crate with many slits and a lid.
As for the foods you’ve already placed in your fridge, leave it be: the temperature difference from taking it out again will only make it spoil faster.