Here’s How: Foods Never to Store in the Fridge

In our box each week, you’ll find a mix of ingredients that do and do not need to be refrigerated. The more you cook and get to know the food, the more you’ll develop a sense of intuition about what should be in the fridge and what’s best left on the counter.

Yesterday, we posted about six ingredients that you should always store in the cold of your fridge in order to preserve them. Today, we’re back to show you five more that should avoid the fridge at all costs.

Do any surprise you? Let us know in the comments.

1. Bananas


The skin of bananas will turn dark brown soon after you put them in the fridge. While the inside will be perfectly edible, it’s fair to say that the appeal of the banana will have dwindled. If you’re saving the bananas for banana bread, though, keeping them in the fridge and freezer is a good way to stop the browning ’til you’re ready to bake.

2. Unripe Avocados

If you’re starting out with an avocado that’s hard, leave it on the counter until it’s soft and ripe. (Here’s how to tell if your avocado is ripe.) Once it’s softened, you can slow down the ripening by transferring the fruit from the table to the fridge.

3. Tomatoes

When tomatoes go in the fridge, their flesh chills and becomes unappealingly mealy. At the same time, their flavor vanishes. This is not good. You’ll need a whole lot of salt to spruce up a refrigerated tomato. Don’t make the sacrifice. The optimal temperature for tomato storage is 60 to 65°F, so pile them in a bowl and leave them on the countertop.

4. Onions


Onions keep best in a cool, dry place with plenty of ventilation. Place them in a bowl on the table or countertop, and set it in a spot that doesn’t get a ton of direct sunlight. Stored that way, onions should last for a while–likely more than a month.

5. Canned Goods


A whole can can be stored in the fridge–though there’s really no need to use up any fridge space, since it doesn’t need to be–but an opened can never should be, as bacteria can grow. If you have leftovers in a can, transfer to plastic or glass before storing in the fridge.

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