Cooking

Keep These 5 Foods Out of the Refrigerator

We're pretty sure you don’t want mealy tomatoes
5 Foods Out of the Refrigerator
Photo: Matthew Paul Argall via Flickr

Sometimes it’s clear where you should store certain foods. Ice cream? Freezer. That cookie you found in your bag? Garbage. And though it’s true that the refrigerator extends the shelf life of most foods, you’re better off storing the following items at room temp rather than prolonging their shelf life and letting their taste get subpar. Make more space for raw chicken and deviled eggs, and keep these five foods out of the refrigerator.

① Tomatoes
Bottom line: They get mealy when chilled, especially if you have a refrigerator whose temp settings can’t be tamed. Nobody wants a frozen heirloom.

② Bread
Oprah’s favorite carb dries out in the refrigerator, so if for whatever reason you can’t eat a loaf before it could go bad, keep it in the freezer—presliced, so that it’s easy to grab when needed.

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③ Coffee
Every time you open and close the door to get milk for your morning joe, you’re inviting insidious moisture into any coffee bags. That’s a negative feedback loop easily avoided by storing your beans in a cool, dry place.

④ Onions
With layers like that, you wouldn’t need to be refrigerated either. Keep onions in a cool, dry space and they’ll be fine—and everything else in your fridge will be safe from their permeating scent.

⑤ Potatoes
Cold air speeds up the process in which the starch in potatoes turns into sugar, making their quality less than fry-able. If already cut, keep the pieces in the refrigerator submerged in cold water so they don’t turn brown.

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