Foods You Should Never Keep Refrigerated

 

Every kind of food is better when it is stored in the refrigerator, or so we thought. This is not always the case. Keeping specific foods refrigerated retards bacterial growth and assists in preventing food poisoning. However, there are other foods that do much better remaining at room temperature. The question is, how do know which one? As it is not as simple as it sounds. Everyone knows that eggs, meat, and milk are best kept refrigerated; however, what about potatoes, tomatoes, and avocados? Determining the foods to refrigerate and the ones not to, will ensure individuals get the most out of their groceries.

Tomatoes

Loaded with potassium, vitamin C, and a host of other nutrients, ripe tomatoes will do better left on the kitchen counter. In particular, if they are to be consumed the following day. Placing them in the refrigerator will impact their taste and texture as stated by dietitians. The research was done in 2020 however, uncovered that there was no significant difference in juiciness, aftertaste, sourness, sweetness, and color.

Regardless of whether they were in the refrigerator or if they were left out on the counter. For this research, however, the tomatoes were only refrigerated for one to two days, unlike the prior studies. This could account for the diverse results. The specific crop of tomatoes might also play a role in this as well.

Potatoes

Potatoes should never be kept in the refrigerator. Having the potatoes in the fridge transforms the potato starch into sugar at a faster rate. Then when the potatoes are baked or fried, the sugars might produce acrylamide, which is a cancer-causing chemical. Rather than placing them in the refrigerator, store the potatoes in a dark, cool place. This darkness will prevent them from turning green.

Winter Squash

Ensure that winter squash is stored in a dark, cool place as well, similar to potatoes. The hard outer layer of the winter squash, whether it is spaghetti, kabocha, butternut, or acorn squash, safeguards the interior.

Bananas

In the event that anyone has placed a banana in the refrigerator, they would know that it turns a dark brown. This would indicate that they are not supposed to be placed in the fridge. Bananas, which are typically bought prior to turning ripe, will turn ripe when left at room temperature. However, keeping them in the refrigerator retards this process. According to the experts, bananas emit a gas that will cause other fruit to ripen, therefore keep bananas away from them.

Avocado

Always maintain these healthy fruits at room temperature. However, this would only be relevant if the avocados are being consumed relatively quickly. If this is not the case, place them in the refrigerator so that they can ripen a bit slower. In the event that they are firm, remove them from the refrigerator a day or two prior to consumption. This will ensure that individuals will not miss that short window of avocado readiness. In order to get an avocado that is really hard to ripen, place it in a brown paper bag with a banana. As mentioned, the ethylene gas being released from the banana will ripen the avocado.

Butter

Margarine and butter will spread and slice better if kept at room temperature, this is considered safe within reason. However, leaving either of them on the kitchen counter for several days is not a good idea at all. Butter could turn rancid and margarine, in particular the soft tub variety, could separate into solids and liquids. The best thing to do is to keep it out of the refrigerator in the event that it will be utilized within a day or two.

Basil

Herbs such as thyme, rosemary, and basil will dry out very quickly and their flavor will be lost if they are kept refrigerated. Rather, place the herbs out of sunlight on a counter, in a small glass of water, at room temperature.

Melons

Normally, individuals will find whole honeydew, watermelon, and cantaloupe in the produce section at room temperature. This is exactly what individuals should do when they take whole melons home as well. It might even maximize their nutritional value as well. Watermelons stored at room temperature have twice the amount of the antioxidant beta carotene. It also consists of twenty percent more lycopene. However, cut melons are another story. As they no longer have the protective shell, storing cut melons at room temperature could result in the rapid growth of bacteria.

Ketchup

According to the Food Marketing Institute and Cornell University Institute of Food Science, unopened ketchup could last for more than a year. As soon as it is open, it should be consumed within a month, if it is kept in a pantry. However, it is kept in the refrigerator and should be consumed within six months.

Honey

Honey should be kept in a tightly sealed container in a cool area, which is away from direct sunlight. It might solidify if kept in the refrigerator, thus making it more difficult to use.