Keeping Produce Fresh – 3 Tips To Prevent A Moldy, Smelly Mess

Keeping Produce Fresh – 3 Tips To Prevent A Moldy, Smelly Mess
Heather Nicholds, C.H.N.

Keeping produce fresh can be tricky. I love going to the farmer’s market and getting a huge load of fresh vegetables and herbs.

The only downside is that when I get it all home, I want to eat it all right away – because it’s so good, and also because I know the fresher it is the more nutrients I’ll get out of it. I also want it to last though, since markets are often only once a week.

Fresh produce – especially really high quality fruits and vegetables – makes the base of a long-term healthy eating plan. You can find out about the other basics of a healthy lifestyle in a series of special (free) videos I put together for you. You can sign up for them at the very top right of this page.

Today I wanted to share a few simple tricks I have up my sleeve for keeping produce fresh longer.

1. Prioritize. Prioritize your produce, and eat the most perishable things first. I make lettuce my top priority, along with any greens that come in a head (as opposed to stems). Root vegetables are low priority since they keep really well in the fridge or in a cold cellar.

2. Get them in some water. You always hear people say ‘I better get these in some water’ when they get a bouquet of flowers. Well, the same holds true for any produce you have that has stems.

{jumi [files/includes/youtube.php] [Y44UPRiGUrQ]}

Kale, chard, asparagus, parsley, basil, mint, cilantro and any other stem you buy will be so happy in a vase of water – plus you can make some gorgeous edible arrangements for your kitchen counter.

My bonus tip here is that if you cut off the very bottom of the stems, the plant will have a fresh opening to take up the water. In the heat of the summer, I keep my vase in the fridge for even happier greens and herbs.

3. Seal in the hydration. If you leave a bunch of celery open in the main part of your fridge, all of the water that makes them crisp and fresh will evaporate out of the vegetable and into the dry surrounding air. Think of the moisture leaving your skin in dry desert (or tundra) air. Keeping produce fresh is much easier if your vegetables are kept in a somewhat airtight crisper drawer.

One viewer mentioned to me that he has a lot of success with keeping celery in tinfoil – makes sense for sealing hydration. Although I hate using plastic, bags can really help here – reuse them as many times as possible.

The exception here is mushrooms – they want to breathe, and will rot pretty quickly in a plastic bag. Get them in a paper bag, and keep them in that bag in the main section of the fridge.

Keeping produce fresh is tough, but I hope these simple tips give you a start. If you can grow a bit of your own food – even just sprouts (more on them coming up next time) or herbs on your windowsill – it’ll add even more freshness.

What are some of your secrets to keeping produce fresh? Share the wealth with us – leave a comment below with your tips for everyone.


Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


vegan taster meal plan + quick start guide

Download Free