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How To Make Produce Last Longer & Reduce Waste 🙌🏻25+ Tips!

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We were able to lessen our food waste by making simple changes to how we store our produce, so we decided to share these tips with you so they can help you do the same!
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hi everyone and welcome back to another video my name is Jasmine and today I'm going to be showing you how to properly store your produce so it is Earth Month and with that Chris and I were extra inspired to try and make changes in our life to waste less and do better for our planet and one of the areas that we wanted to tackle was our food waste so I've noticed that our produce tends to go bad quickly and it's not that we're over purchasing the food is just not lasting as long as we would have liked it to so I went online and I tried to figure out ways to combat this and ways to make changes in order to preserve our produce and I started seeing all these awesome tips and tricks on how to properly store your produce keep things fresh or longer and to reduce your waste so today I'm compiling all of those into a video for you hopefully to help you waste less in your household to inspire you to make these changes and I guess for your enjoyment as well so let's get started so if you like onions and potatoes are pretty much staples in most households but the number one thing you want to make sure you don't do is store these next to each other so onions actually producing them in ethylene gas which will cause the potatoes to spoil faster and so what you want to do is try to keep these far away from one another so that you prevent that from happening so I have my potatoes in this bowl and it is ideal to keep them in a cool and dark area so we have them away from the window which is on the other side of our kitchen and and this room in general if you have a dark bag or a paper bag to store it and that's even better you can even put it in a cabinet or a drawer but we like to keep it on our countertop because we are notorious for forgetting what we actually have stocked and if I put it in the drawer or a cabinet I'll probably forget it so I like to just keep these in the corner that's where I started putting them and then I have my other produce right here I have the other produce away from the potatoes and actually have my onion right here and keep it pretty far from the potato and again it's good to keep it in a cool and dark place you can also put that in a drawer or a pantry or a cabinet but this is just the best breast in terms of making sure that we use up our produce so Matos tomatoes if you guys watch queer eye you probably saw the tomahto little skit they had at the end but basically you're supposed to store tomatoes on the counter at room temperature do not put them in the fridge and you will see a difference definitely in the flavor of the tomatoes as well so store them on your countertop and then also of garlic so I keep our garlic in a white bowl if you buy garlic in a bag it's best to remove them from the bag and put them in a bowl and just store them on the counter not in the fridge same goes with potatoes if they come in a plastic bag it's best to take them out of that bag as well so some fruits do best in the refrigerator while some do best on the counter I'll have a list on our blog post I'll link down below but mango is a fruit that you keep on the counter as well as bananas and I have plantains here as well because as you sit on the counter they'll continue to ripen as opposed to other fruits like apples and citrus as I said on the counter they actually begin to deteriorate so those we actually keep in the fridge I'll talk more about that when I shift over there oh yeah this is our current produce section on our counter this isn't necessarily a pretty storage hack but this is pertaining to produce so I decided to throw it into the video I've mentioned this before but we like to make our own vegetable broth at home it's actually super easy to do and the way that we make it is by actually collecting vegetable scraps so we have onion skin garlic skins the tops of carrots the bottoms of celery and little bits and pieces of things that we weren't able to use up but we wanted to still put them to good use and so when this bag fills up I have popped this on the stovetop what some water and I bring it to a boil you can add any seasonings of choice you can add more vegetables if you want to make them more flavorful you can even add bay leaves and then you'll boil it down you strain it squeeze out all of the juice and then you'll have yourself some vegetable broth so I have a whole blog post on this and I actually have a video on it as well so I'll link the video on the top so link the video in the top right corner and also link the blog post down below which goes into a little more detail and hopefully you guys can make some vegetable broth at home so fresh herbs are notorious for wilting in the refrigerator and the best thing that you can do to preserve them keep them fresh keep them happy is to actually store them as you would flowers so we transfer our herbs to small cups fill it with water and then we pop this into our refrigerator and it last longer it stays fresh and you'll notice a huge difference we actually put these on the top shelf just because that is the tallest for us you can definitely adjust your shelves as necessary if you have taller objects in your refrigerator a little easier for that so they just go right on top the only one that I recommend not putting in the refrigerator is actually basil so we store our basil in the refrigerator for the longest time and it would always go black and so I would always try to just use our basil as soon as possible but I ended up losing a lot of basil wasting a lot of basil so that I looked up how to actually properly store basil and it's actually better at room temperature and it thrives in a cup with water like the other herbs as well so we keep this an indirect light in the kitchen on our little windowsill if you can get your hands on a basil plant that is even better and your basil would be so much pressure that way we've killed multiple basil plants so maybe someday we'll have some success there but for now this is working and just fine avocado a beautiful and very finicky fruit it could be super ripe and then the next day just be done and destroyed and black and just not ideal so actually what you can do is you can store these on your countertop until they ripen and you'll know that they're ripe when the top just pops off of it and of course they're soft so once they ripen just pop them into the refrigerator that'll the ripening process and then you can just pull the avocados out of there as necessary they're not going to last too long in there but it'll definitely help with you being able to eat them and not wasting them another thing is if you get a bunch of avocados like if you get a bag at Trader Joe's or Whole Foods you can put some of the avocados in the fridge when they're still hard and keep some on the countertop so the ones on the countertop will ripen and the ones in the fridge it will help their ripening process so they'll stay pretty hard and once you're ready to use more avocados then you can transfer them out of the refrigerator onto your countertop and just let them ripen so this is actually in our fridge tour video but storing asparagus is the same thing as the herbs I've except for this one I recommend cutting a little bit off of the ends of the asparagus and then just putting it into a cup of water and it will last a lot longer in the fridge you can also wrap it in a plastic bag but we try not to use plastic bags so I just keep it as is and you can put it inside of the refrigerator as well but ours is a little tall so we just keep it on the door cuz we have room there almond milk so we have actually homemade almond milk and this one's a store-bought and it is ideal to keep this inside of the refrigerator especially if you're making a homemade almond look because it's way more sensitive because they keep it on the door when you're constantly opening and closing your refrigerator the temperature fluctuates the most on the door so this won't keep as fresh as it would within the body of the refrigerator which is colder so I just like to put it on the middle shelf and it lasts longer and yeah you're good to go nuts and seeds are actually ideal in a cool and dark place so we keep these in the refrigerator because it is cool and of course when we close it it's dark in there if you don't have room in your refrigerator and you can definitely put these into the pantry just keep in mind that they won't last as long as they would in the refrigerator and the reason why you want to keep them in a cool and dark place is because if in a warm and bright place they actually can go rancid faster so this just keeps them fresh and also just keep in mind nuts don't last forever if you've had nuts for over a year you may want to check the expiration date on them or just do a quick google search to make sure they're still okay I actually learned this tip I think it was from pick up lines here on YouTube and if you oh there's a song that our fridge place if you cut up your celery and your carrots and actually put them in jars full of water they will stay fresher and crispy or longer okay so you just keep them in water and then you can just remove the carrots and the celery as you need or just drain the whole thing when you're ready to eat them this is a really really great tip especially if you want a meal prep for the week and cut your celery and carrots but you don't want them to dry out now moving on to the Drover's another tip for your crisper drawers and your fridge is you can actually line them with towels or paper towels I've even seen people do newspaper but I prefer just using regular kitchen towels and that will absorb any excess moisture and help prevent the drawer from just getting gross and you can just regularly clean out the drawer clean the towel or replace it with a new one and you'll be good to go so I've got cucumbers quite often I like to use them for smoothies and juices mostly and sometimes I put them in my salads but the problem I was facing is I would have one in the fridge and I've just turn really slimy and just go bad so fast so I went online I tried to figure out the best way to store cucumbers and I actually learned that if you wrap your cucumber in towels it recommended paper towels but I'm trying not to use paper towels here so I'm just using a regular kitchen towel and then put them in a plastic bag which I'm using a reusable bag this is from stasher bag and just put the cucumbers in there and then and just take them out as you need then it will stay fresher longer the only thing with this it's only four whole cucumbers if you cut your cucumbers it's a whole different story but I try to use the whole cucumber at once like I mentioned before I like to use these for juices and smoothies mostly so I usually end up using the whole thing greens so this doesn't look like greens but if you unravel this baby got some kale in here and I actually learned this from Chris because his mom does this when you get home remove the greens from their bags we buy them in bulk so they don't really they don't usually come in a bag and we rinse out our greens you can remove the stems there but we like to keep them on because it gets a little messy if you remove the stems put them onto a towel and let that towel and the Greens dry and then just roll it all up in the towel and stick it in the fridge like this this will absorb excess moisture it'll keep it fresh longer when you keep them in the sealed plastic bags and plastic containers they are more susceptible to rotting and that's actually how you're viewing start to turn slimy because there's too much moisture that builds up in there so with the towel it actually will absorb the excess moisture and prevent that from happening if you buy greens in a bag or in a plastic container you can do the same thing or what you can do is just make sure to puncture holes in the container or in the bag better yet remove the greens from the plastic container and line it with a paper towel or a regular towel and then put the greens back in that way it'll absorb excess moisture you can't really do that with the bags so I would suggest what the bags we're moving them and wrapping them in a towel it's the best way to store them and it'll keep them fresh longer broccoli and cauliflower so we usually get our broccoli cauliflower in bulk and bring them home in a bag but sometimes they come wrapped in plastic as well so what we've learned to do is actually transfer them to a sealable bag we don't seal it all the way we keep the ends open so it can breathe but transfer it to a bag and put in again paper towel or regular towel and that will absorb excess moisture and it'll keep fresher longer in here it is a little bit more clunkier in the fridge but it is definitely worth it it'll keep their crisp texture and they'll stay fresher longer so you see just throw my ginger straight up in the drawer and it would always it was susceptible to getting dry and moldy and it just wasn't ideal so what I learned actually is when you get your ginger dry it just wipe it down with a towel Pat it down with a towel and actually put it into a sealable container and if you cut your ginger just make sure to Pat the area that you cut to absorb any excess moisture and put it back in the container it'll stay fresher longer in here and yeah so berries are very finicky and they can definitely mold very fast in the fridge I've learned from experience and I wasted a lot of berries and they're quite expensive so I wanted to try to figure out a way to best preserve them so I was talking to my mom and she actually recommended that I do a vinegar bath so I looked it up online and basically if you wash berries in a vinegar and water solution it's not that much of vinegar you don't want to put too much because it will become very vinegary and taste but it's a very dilute solution you soak the berries for at least 5 minutes then you'll rinse them off in a colander and then actually transfer them to a container with a towel because like I've been saying throughout this whole video the towel will absorb any excess moisture and will keep the fruit fresher longer and it'll prevent it from getting moldy and I actually have a cover for this but I don't seal it all the way because you don't want to lock in the moisture so I just place it right on top it has enough aeration and it'll be good to go you can also keep this in the container that it came in because that does have enough holes to keep it aerated in there but I wasn't just lining it with a towel or a paper towel just to absorb that moisture now on some mushrooms so if you buy mushrooms in the cardboard container just keep them in the container and you can pick a few holes on top as well just to keep the air flowing through there but if you buy your mushrooms and book don't transfer them to a plastic bag or a like sealable ziplock bag it's actually ideal to keep them in a similar setting as they would be in that cardboard container because this will absorb excess moisture and it will also just keep them fresh and from getting slimy if you know what I mean so I actually have a cloth reusable bag that we grocery shop with and I just keep the mushrooms in here in the fridge and I'll just put this straight in the fridge and then once we use up all the mushrooms I'll just wash this bag I just hand wash it and let it air dry but if you don't have a bag like this you can also put this in a container lined with a towel and it's recommended that you cover it with plastic wrap but I'm trying not to use that so what you can do is just put the towel on top of the mushrooms and again it'll absorb any excess moisture so we did start keeping some of our fruits in the refrig greater citrus is actually ideal within the refrigerator because when you let it sit out at room temperature it'll start to dry out so I learned this because we had a bunch of limes we in our imperfect produce box a bunch of limes came we didn't use them all and it started to get really hard it'll look this is weird there wasn't that much liquid or juice in the inside anymore and it's because as this it out they started drying out so it's ideal to keep them in a cool area the refrigerator is best and citrus is actually ideal when it's enjoyed at room temperature so I'd just suggest removing it from the fridge letting it come to room temperature before using it or juicing it or whatever you're gonna do so it's actually best to store apples in the refrigerator as well if you let them sit out they start to get soft and like not as enjoyable and so again I just keep them in the fridge remove them I let them come to room temperature before I enjoy them my teeth are very sensitive to cold things so I don't really like enjoying fruit straight out of the fridge so I just let it come to room temperature or leave it out and then just enjoy it later in the day in terms of your crisper drawers it is not ideal to store your fruits and vegetables together in the same drawer so fruit actually emits ethylene which is a ripening agent and it'll actually cause your vegetables to spoil faster so it's just ideal to keep them separated so that they are both happy and they both stay fresh longer and speaking of ethylene gas because the fruits are emitting that it is best to keep the fruit grower at low humidity I didn't know anything about the humidity drawers until we got our new refrigerator I just started doing so much research on the fridge and like reading more I actually read the manual online and so it is best to keep fruit at a low humidity setting and that will actually let the gas escape and it'll keep the fruit fresher longer and for the vegetables is actually ideal to keep those at a high humidity setting because that is the ideal setting for them to stay fresh in so so a good rule of thumb is to use the low humidity settings for things that spoil and use – today settings for things that wilt so it's mostly fruits versus vegetables there can be some overlap there but because we like to keep our fruits and vegetables separated we just keep one at low and one a time another way that you can prevent spoilage with the fruits and vegetables in your crisper drawers is to actually try not to pack them to the brim when they are really full that prevents airflow and it'll actually make your produce spoil faster so a good rule of thumb is just to let them and become about 3/4 of the way full and this has been helping us because it prevents us from buying too much as well and it just helps us use up more of our fruits and vegetables I hope these help you guys I don't know if this is like a video that everyone's gonna love but I was I just feel very geeky about this stuff I was super excited when I learned all of these hacks these tips and tricks and they've definitely been helping us in wasting less and preserving our fruits and vegetables so they're more enjoyable when we do eat them so if you guys liked this video please give it a thumbs up let us know what you thought about it in the comments below hit that Bell if you want notifications for all our new videos and I'll see you soon you [Applause]