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You Only Need One Tip to Avoid Spoiled Fruits and Vegetables!
Do you ever throw out fruits and vegetables because you haven’t gotten around to eating them before they spoil? That’s always a rotten deal. And it’s a waste of your good money.
Well, no more!
Sure, there are a lot of ways to avoid spoiled fruits and vegetables and prolong their freshness by modifying the way you store them… There is advice out there about storing every fresh fruit and vegetable – fridge vs counter, moist vs dry or dark or cool environment, hang them, keep them on the stem, use special containers or crisper bins with the right humidity settings, etc. etc. Phew!
And you can research and memorize all of those storage tips and tricks for each type of fruit and vegetable if you’d like.
As for me, I want a simpler way to avoid spoiled fruits and vegetables in my home. We buy them at the grocery store every week, and in the past, it was not uncommon for us to throw out half of it. That’s like throwing money in the trash. This was unacceptable to me, especially with our smaller budget.
Even worse, sometimes we’d end up with gnats or ants in the house.
I tried planning meals better, but I wasn’t consistent with it and the fruits and veggies would keep going to waste.
It wasn’t until I discovered a better way to make my daily smoothies that I realized how to stop wasting any fruits and veggies in our home.
I’ve been implementing this one rule of thumb ever since, and it’s working! We aren’t wasting our fruit and veggies like before.
There were some weeks when the bananas would start to get overripe, so I’d throw them in the freezer before they went bad and continue to use them in my shakes with great success. But it was common for me to not get through the bag of spinach before it went bad.
After throwing out many partially used bags of spinach, I decided to throw a bag in the freezer as soon as I brought it home. To my delight, the frozen spinach was also great in my shakes!
Suddenly, bananas and spinach were never going to waste in our home.
And that’s when a light bulb turned on in my brain. I realized that this freezer trick could work for any of our fruits and vegetables- not just my bananas and spinach.
Stop wasting food and money, and take advantage of your freezer.
Most any fruit or vegetable can be thrown into the freezer to be used another day – for all sorts of recipes!
It’s as simple as that.
As soon as you realize you may not eat them in time, throw them in the freezer.
Better yet, whatever portion you know you won’t have time to eat fresh within 5 days, throw into the freezer right away, as soon as you get home from the grocery store.
Frugal Rules of Thumb: If you can throw a fruit into a smoothie, you can freeze it. If you can throw a vegetable into a soup, you can freeze it. If you can freeze it, it should never spoil in your home again.
Here are a few of my favorite fruits and veggies to freeze, my tips for freezing them, and examples of how to make use of them frozen.
- Spinach: This one’s super easy. All you have to do is wash it before throwing spinach in the freezer. In fact, I buy a bag of pre-washed spinach and throw the whole bag directly into the freezer. No extra work at all. I love the frozen spinach in my fruit smoothies, shakeology, and scrambled eggs. I also used them in an Italian sausage soup last week! It’s a great way to get more veggies in your daily diet.
Here’s a picture of frozen spinach from my freezer, still in the bag that it came in from the store. It looks just like fresh spinach, only colder. 😉
- Cauliflower / broccoli: These need to be washed and cut before throwing into the freezer. That’s still pretty easy to save these veggies from your trash or compost pile. Frozen cauliflower is great for some of my family’s favorite casserole dishes like sausage cauliflower casserole and cheeseburger casserole. Frozen broccoli is also great for casseroles, stir fry, or roasted as a side dish.
- Bell Peppers: Wash and cut before throwing into the freezer. Also great for casserole dishes and soups.
- Green beans: Wash and cut before throwing into the freezer. Great for soups and sides.
- Tomatoes: Just wash. No need to remove the skin. Great for spaghetti sauces and soups.
- Bananas: Peel the bananas before you freeze. It’s so much easier to peel them before freezing. I promise that they won’t turn brown. See my evidence in the pictures below. Frozen bananas can be used for banana bread, dessert bars, smoothies, and a healthy “ice cream” alternative.
- Blueberries: Wash first. You can eat them directly from the freezer (-frozen is my kid’s favorite way to have blueberries), put them on oatmeal, cook into pies, or mix into smoothies.
- Strawberries: Wash first. Use them for smoothies, or mix into ice cream.
- Apples: Wash and slice before throwing them into the freezer. You can make pie, or apple sauce with frozen apples. Even warm them up in the microwave with some cinnamon for a treat.
This is not a comprehensive list, of course. For any frozen fruit or vegetable you’ve got, search online for recipes to use. Believe me, you’ll find plenty!
Go ahead. Spoil yourself with fruits and veggies that never spoil in your home again. Your health and wallet will thank you.