Weekly Hack: Free up fridge space

Published: September 20, 2019

By Andrey Armyagov/Shutterstock

Is your fridge jam-packed? You’re probably storing items in there that will taste better and last longer if you keep them out of the fridge.

Tomatoes

They get mealy in the cold. Keep them at room temperature, out of direct sunlight.

Most bread, cakes, and cookies

The fridge causes these items to go stale faster. Just don’t even. Of course, keeping this stuff on the counter encourages you to eat them faster. Gah! If you want the homemade chocolate chip cookies out of sight, better freeze them.

Onions, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and garlic

They love a cool, dark place: the pantry, the garage, or the basement. Not the fridge.

Whole melons and stone fruits

Keep these on the kitchen counter until you’ve cut them up, or until they become soft to the touch and start to smell sweet. Then move them to the fridge, or eat them.

Hot sauce

Some hot sauce fanatics say the cold can weaken its potency. Which kind of defeats the purpose of hot sauce. If you use it frequently, keep it out of the fridge—unless the ingredients include fruits, vegetables, or eggs. Other vinegar-based sauces, or condiments such as soy sauce, mustard, and fish sauce, are also okay outside the fridge; the more vinegar, the longer the condiment will last. Vinegar itself is so acidic that, according to research, it doesn’t ever go bad. Vinegar will outlive us all.

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