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Refrigerators keep food fresh. But, some foods don’t thrive in cool temperatures in the fridge. Here are 9 foods that you might consider migrating today.

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A while back I wrote a post on how to organize your fridge to ensure your food stays at its freshest longest and that started a bit of a conversation about what foods really do need to be stored in the refrigerator.

Milk and meat are obvious but there are questions about other items. I got the low down on some foods that most people do store in the fridge which you should get out of there ASAP!

1. Tomatoes

Refrigerating these can stop the ripening process which alters the texture and taste of this fruit significantly. Instead of turning your tomatoes into leather keep them on the counter in a basket or bowl.

2. Bread

Old air makes bread go stale faster. Enough said – keep it on the counter for a few days and freeze the rest until you are ready to use it.

3. Olive oil

Keeping olive oil in the fridge will cause it to condense and turn into a butter-like texture – hardly easy for drizzling over salads. Store it in a cool, dry place.

4. Potatoes

Cold temperatures can cause potatoes to break down their starch content into sugar more quickly; not great for taste or your waistline. Keep these in a cool place preferably in a paper bag.

5. Garlic

Cool temperatures make garlic sprout which leads it to quickly going moldy. Keep your cloves in a cool dry area – those decorative garlic jars are ideal.

6. Coffee

Refrigerating coffee can weaken the bean causing it to lose some flavor. Ironically even though refrigeration is not recommended, keeping coffee in your freezer is OK! If you know you won’t drink it for a while freezing it can keep it fresh and stable, otherwise keep it tightly sealed on your counter.

7. Honey

While the quality will stay the same refrigerated honey can crystalize which makes it difficult to use. Store it on your counter or in a cupboard.

8. Melons

Whole melons can lose their antioxidant content rather quickly if they are kept in the fridge. However once they are cut the remaining pieces should be wrapped and kept in the fridge where they still will slowly lose antioxidants but that’s better than having the cut up pieces go rancid on the counter!

9. Onions

The moisture in the fridge can turn your onions soft and moldy so keep them in a basket (away from other foods) in a dry cool area. Scallions, on the other hand SHOULD be kept refrigerated because they have higher water content and are happier in cold areas.

The age old debate

One food I’ve come across which always causes a debate is BUTTER! It seems people are split on how to store butter. Some people store their butter in the fridge because they are scared it will spoil. Others store theirs proudly on the counter in butter dishes claiming it never goes bad and is much easier to spread if not kept in the fridge.

butter in fridge

The USDA actually DOES recommend refrigerating butter but as most butter is pasteurized and salted it really does have a very low risk of spoiling if left out.

Were you surprised?

I’ve had to move my tomatoes and melons out of the fridge – these surprised me. Did any of them surprise you? And what side of the butter debate are you on?

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Erika Palmer

Erika Palmer is a Mom and freelance writer located in Beautiful British Columbia. She is currently working hard to create a home for her new family and is stumbling hilariously down the road to becoming a domestic goddess. In addition to her love of family, and reading and writing, she enjoys exploring new interests with friends, shopping for just about anything, and cuddling up with a great cup of tea and some sort of chocolate treat.