When it comes to food, our first instinct is usually to refrigerate it so it stays fresh longer. But that isn’t always the case. Hi viewers and welcome back to another Bestie video. In today’s times, refrigeration is a substantial practice in every kitchen and household. It goes a long way in preserving our food and maintaining its quality.
The Misconceptions About Refrigeration
Despite popular belief, refrigerating certain foods can actually change their flavor and not in a good way. It can even reduce their nutritional quality or accelerate the spoiling process. In today’s video, we will tell you about 18 such foods that you should never refrigerate.
Tomatoes: To Refrigerate or Not to Refrigerate?
The texture of tomatoes can be hit or miss depending on how you store them. If you put them in the fridge, they can become mealy and lose their flavor. Instead, store them on the counter at room temperature for 1-2 days, but keep them out any longer than that and they might go bad.
Melons: Keep Them Outside the Fridge
Melons normally do best outside the fridge. Once refrigerated, they tend to break down and become powdery and grainy. So to keep the flavor intact, they need to be stored at room temperature. However, after cutting, you should store them in the fridge for three to four days.
Potatoes: Not for the Fridge
Potatoes are a fan favorite because of their versatility, but they should never be placed in the fridge. Cold temperatures can break down the starches in them, changing the taste and texture. For optimal storage, place them in a cool, dry space to keep them fresh.
Basil: Handle with Care
Basil is a great herb to have around the house. Its unique taste makes for the perfect cooking partner to spice up your kitchen. Just remember: it should be kept at a temperature of at least 40 degrees F. Anything less than this can cause black marks to appear on the plant and ruin their taste.
Bananas: Tropical Fruit, Room Temperature
Bananas are tropical fruit. So, it’s safe to say that they don’t benefit from the cooler climate of a fridge. The cold temperature can actually have the reverse effect by turning them black quicker. When buying your bananas, catch them before they’re ripe so they can mature at room temperature.
Onions: Keep Them Out of the Fridge
Onions don’t just rely on warmer climates than the fridge. They actually depend on clear and open air circulation to keep them fresh. Whether they’re chopped or fried, you need to look after them the same way you would any other food.
Cucumbers: Avoid Refrigeration
Storing cucumbers in the fridge will make them watery and pitted. If you do choose to refrigerate them, it’s best to wrap them up in plastic to minimize the moisture.
Butter: Room Temperature Spread
There’s nothing worse than trying to spread rock hard butter. Depending on temperatures, you can store butter on the counter, covered, for a week or so. The best plan is to refrigerate butter and take it out one stick at a time.
Honey: Sweetener Best Kept Outside the Fridge
Honey is a versatile natural sweetener, with a seemingly never-ending shelf life. But it should never be stored in the fridge. The colder temperatures alter the chemical makeup of it and cause it to crystallize and seize up.
Mature White Wines: Not Too Cold
White wines are best served chilled, but mature white wines like Chardonnay are better appreciated at slightly warmer temperatures. If you have one, a wine fridge set at 50-55ºF is the most ideal option.
Oils: Room Temperature Storage
Pretty much all oils are safe to store at room temperature. If the oil has a lower saturated-fat content, such as safflower or sunflower, it will benefit from being kept cool. The only ones that you must refrigerate are nut-based oils.
Garlic: Keep It Dry and Warm
Garlic should not be stored in the fridge as it can lead to sprouting and mold. The best thing about accidentally putting your garlic in the fridge is that all the rotting occurs from inside the cloves, so you won’t be able to see it.
Peanut Butter: Avoid the Fridge for Easy Spreading
Peanut butter is best enjoyed when it’s easy to spread. Keeping it in the fridge hardens the spread and makes it hard to apply to bread.
Hot Sauces: Keep Them at Room Temperature
Hot sauces contain vinegar and certain preservatives that slow down molding and bacteria from growing. Keeping your favorite condiments at room temperature won’t speed up the molding process and might just reduce their strength.
Chocolate: Avoid the Fridge for Better Taste
The fridge is the worst place for your bar or box of chocolates. The temperature and moisture of the fridge can tamper with the taste, color, and texture. Chocolate should be protected in a cool, dry place, in an airtight container if you’ve already broken into it.
Peaches: Not Ready for the Fridge
Peaches, like many other stone fruits, don’t need to be refrigerated before they’re ripe and ready. Cold temperatures hinder the ripening process, so store them on the countertop until they’re ready to eat.
Aged Specialty Cheese: Some Shouldn’t Be Refrigerated
Hard cheeses like Gouda and cheddar retain their flavor better without refrigeration, while shredded cheddar should be kept in the fridge.
Coffee Beans: Keep Them Dry
Coffee beans should not be stored in the fridge as the humidity can affect the flavor of both ground and whole beans.
Bread: Not for the Fridge
Bread, especially white bread, should not be refrigerated as it dries up quickly. Instead, take out the amount you’ll eat in the next few days and deep freeze the rest.
Citrus Fruits: Best on the Countertop
Citrus fruits like lemons, limes, oranges, and grapefruits are best preserved in a countertop fruit basket instead of the fridge.
Cake: To Refrigerate or Not to Refrigerate
Frosting-free cakes and those topped with ganache or buttercream can be stored in an airtight container on the counter for up to three days.
Knowing which foods to refrigerate and which ones to keep at room temperature can significantly impact their flavor, texture, and longevity. While refrigeration is crucial for many items, it’s important to understand that some foods fare better outside the cold confines of the fridge. So, the next time you’re organizing your kitchen, keep these tips in mind to ensure your food stays fresh and delicious.
- Why shouldn’t tomatoes be refrigerated? Refrigerating tomatoes can cause them to become mealy and lose their flavor. It’s best to store them at room temperature.
- Can I refrigerate honey? No, refrigerating honey can alter its chemical makeup and cause it to crystallize. It’s best kept at room temperature.
- Should I refrigerate hot sauces? Refrigerating hot sauces won’t speed up molding, but it might reduce their strength. It’s better to store them at room temperature.
- Can I store bread in the fridge? Bread, especially white bread, should not be stored in the fridge as it dries up quickly. It’s better to freeze the excess.
- Can I refrigerate citrus fruits? Citrus fruits like lemons, limes, oranges, and grapefruits are best preserved on the countertop, not in the fridge.