How Long Does It Take for Strawberries to Go Bad? Info and Tips
Sweet and tangy, strawberries are exotic fruits that add flavor and color to salads and desserts. These are not only delicious but also power-packed with a smorgasbord of vitamins and minerals.
Strawberries have a shorter lifespan compared to other fruits. Typically, they last for a day or two on the counter and up to 5 days in a vegetable crisper. But their lifespan largely depends on when they are picked and how they are stored.
In this article, we shall gather information about the correct storage tips for strawberries. We will learn about how long it takes for strawberries to go bad.
How long do strawberries last outside?
Strawberries are a cold-climate production. They thrive best in cooler temperatures. When kept on the counter at room temperature, they do not last a long time. Life can be enhanced when they are stored properly.
Strawberries should be immediately refrigerated if you want to store them properly. You can store them for some time outside, but longer periods of outdoor exposure can ruin them.
If you have to store them outside then here are some tips for proper storage:
- Avoid direct sunlight
Do not store your strawberries directly under the sun as they will spoil and wilt faster. It is best to store them in a shady spot. Heat causes strawberries to wilt faster. Keep them in a cool and dry place.
- Keep them open
Allow the strawberries to breathe when storing them outside. Do not place them in a closed container. Ensure that the container has a lid with holes to keep the moisture out and allow fresh air inside
- Do not store them outside when it’s raining
Mold grows faster on strawberries when it is humid. Ensure that you keep them in a dry spot to preserve their freshness.
How long do strawberries last in the fridge?
Refrigerating is a proven way to preserve them for longer. The cool and dry climate inside the refrigerator maintains the freshness for longer.
If you have to store them in the fridge, then here are some tips for better storage:
- Store them in a container that has holes in the lid or allows air passage
Do not store strawberries in a closed or air-tight container. Keep them in a container that allows air circulation. You can keep them in the refrigerator in their original packaging that comes with holes.
- Calculate the date of packaging before you store them in the fridge
Generally, you will not find an expiration date on the strawberries. They sometimes come with the date they were plucked on. You can note the date of refrigeration on the container and remember to consume them within a week of refrigeration.
- Look for mold or spoilage signs before storing
Do not store the ones that have mold or signs of spoilage on their surface. Discoloration denotes that they are not fit for consumption.
How long do they last in the freezer?
Strawberries can be frozen as well to expand their lifespan. These can last for months when frozen properly.
If you want to store them for long in the freezer, here are tips to do it properly:
- Store them in a zip lock freezer bag
Freezer burns can damage strawberries. To avoid it, place them in a zip lock freezer bag. These bags prevent air from getting into your berries. Air causes deeper freezer burns.
- Use wax paper along with a freezer bag
Sometimes, removing the strawberries from a freezer bag can get quite tough. You should line a freezer bag with wax paper to allow easy removal of the fruit from the bag.
- Write the date when freezing
Strawberries can last for a maximum of six months when stored in a freezer bag. Write down the date to avoid storing them for longer.
- Use an air-tight container in addition to the zip lock bags
After placing the berries in a ziplock/freezer bag, you must place the bag in an airtight freezer container. Such a container will ensure that moisture and air stay out.
How to tell if your strawberries have gone bad?
A simple visual check is all it takes to know if the fruit is safe for consumption or not. Here is what you need to check for to know if the strawberries have gone bad or not:
Taste the fruit by taking a small bite. If it tastes sweet then they are fine. A tart or bitter taste indicates that the strawberries have gone bad.
The strawberries should look firm and bright red. They should be free from blemishes as well. A burgundy or brown colored strawberry is not safe for consumption.
If you find whitish spots on your strawberries, then you should discard them immediately. These spots are nothing but mold and it is not safe for consumption. Do not clean the mold and consume the berries as moldy fruit is harmful.
If the strawberries are giving off a foul or rancid odor, then they have definitely gone bad. Do not consume if they are smelling bad.
Fresh strawberries are semi-firm and brightly colored. Unripe ones are firm and unsweet. If appear soft or soggy, then they have definitely gone bad. Mushy may not be harmful, but they don’t taste good.
Check if the berries are not infested with any white-colored aphids or any other fruit pests. Do not eat the ones that have been contaminated by any kind of pests.
These are some facts to keep in mind for proper storage of strawberries both outside and inside the refrigerator. Now that you know how long it takes for strawberries to go bad, you will be wiser while buying and consuming them.
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