The eternal struggle: your family always says they're hungry, but at the end of the week you always find yourself throwing food straight from the fridge into the trash. So what went wrong?
You may think that you're buying too much food, but that's probably not true. You know how much your family needs, the problem is the food always seems to spoil before they can enjoy it.
You may start to assume it's normal for food to go bad so quickly. It isn't. Everything from a bad spot in the fridge to your windows can waste your food, so learn the tricks to make your groceries last until your family eats them!
1. Keep herbs in a jar of water, or a special container
Just like flowers, herbs seem to turn bad as soon as you get them home from the store. Luckily, the fix is also the same. Letting the ends soak in water in the fridge will keep them fresh for a week or more.
2. Know what DOESN'T belong in the fridge
Apples, avocados, bananas, nectarines, peaches, cucumbers and tomatoes. All of these will only rot faster if you leave them in the fridge. For the fruit, leave them on the counter until they're ripe, then move them into the fridge for best results.
3. Keep your raw foods low
Meat and fish are safest on the bottom shelf of your fridge, which is the coolest section. This also keeps anything raw from dripping onto your other food.
4. Keep your food in the shade
Food on the counter will spoil faster if it's in direct sunlight, so be careful where you put it.
5. Don't store bananas in a bunch
To make your bananas last as long as possible you need to do 2 things: split them apart, and wrap the ends in plastic wrap, which will make them decay much slower.
6. Freeze food you won't use
This is the most important tip because you can save almost any fruit or vegetables from going bad. You can find a use for pretty much anything you put into the freezer, so learn the proper way to save your food.
7. Buy products that eat ethylene gas
Ethylene is released naturally by some fruit and vegetables, but it causes your groceries to decay and can even effect other products in your fridge. Ethylene eaters and veggie bags are both easy and affordable solutions.
8. Keep food out of your fridge door
There's an old wives' tale that milk spoils slower if you keep it in the door, but that's not true. It's actually the warmest part of your fridge, so only keep food with preservatives like condiments, juice and butter here.
9. Split up fruit and vegetables
We already mentioned ethylene gas and its effects above. To keep your veggies safe from the gas, separate them from fruit in different crisper drawers.
10. Wash berries with vinegar
It can seem like your blueberries come home from the store with mold on them already. A quick rinse with vinegar will keep them ripe longer. Dry them off and put them back in the container with paper towel to soak up the moisture.