All of our parents got us to eat our vegetables by saying, “There are kids starving in Africa right now.” While this was (and is) certainly true, our parents were probably more afraid of wasting food than anything else; after all, food is expensive and nothing is more annoying than spending money on produce only to have to throw it away uneaten because it went bad. In order to avoid this and keep your foods fresh, consider doing the following:
Use pop containers
The containers for dry foods such as cereals, pasta or potato chips are merely bags that don’t do a great job at keeping these items fresh. The food companies aren’t going to be changing this anytime soon-after all; it’s in their best interests for your food to go bad so that you have to buy more. To keep your fry goods fresh, when you open a bag or box, put them in a clear plastic container known as a “pop container.”
These airtight storage devices will keep your chips crunchy and your cereal tasty.
Use a vacuum sealer
Another way to keep air-the natural enemy of perishable items-away from your food is to purchase a vacuum sealer.
Vacuum sealers place a plastic film over your foods and suck all the air out before sealing it. Essentially, this puts your food back in its original container and makes them last longer! They are also great for keeping vegetables fresh and tasty and can even be used to store leftovers!
Don’t store fruits and vegetables together
As they age, fruits give off the chemical ethylene gas, which can cause vegetables to go bad quickly. Be especially careful when storing veggies with apples, cantaloupe, honeydew and apricots, as these are the most sensitive to ethylene gas. This rule doesn’t apply to potatoes-which are actually a starch-and storing them with apples may actually delay sprouting.
Cool hot foods quickly
The longer you food stays out after you cook it, the more likely it is to pick up bacteria or other contaminants that can make it spoil. After you cook, place the pan in a container or pot full of ice water. Let the pan sit for a bit and stir constantly to keep the cold circulating through the dish. If possible, try to divide your dish up into smaller containers to make this process even quicker (this works best with chili or soups).
Get a mini fridge
Dairy items such as milk and eggs last longer when they are placed in a cooler part of the refrigerator, however their bulky packaging can make them difficult to store on crowded middle shelves.
The perfect solution to this problem is a small mini fridge to store these items in. Due to their size, most mini fridges are cooler than larger refrigerators-meaning that in the event of a power outage, the food in your mini fridge will take longer to spoil. They are also great places to store breads or muffins.
This article is written by Westbrook Julian, a nutritionist and a health blogger, she recommends having a mini fridge to keep foods and drinks cool and fresh to get the most out of them in terms of vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein, antioxidants, and more.