Onions are a staple ingredient in most kitchens, adding texture and flavour to a variety of dishes. Whether you're preparing a savoury gravy, a zesty chutney, or a refreshing salad, onions are an essential part of the recipe. However, onions are also perishable and can spoil quickly if not stored properly. Proper storage is essential for maintaining their freshness and quality for an extended period. Here are some tips and tricks to help you store onions properly and keep them fresh for months.
Here Are Easy Tips To Store Onions So They Last Longer:
1. Store Them Away From Sunlight
The first rule of onion storage is to keep them in a clean, dark, and dry place between 12 and 17 degrees F. As per experts, whole, raw onions will last two to three months when stored in a cool, dry place. Storing onions in a dry place with good ventilation is the best way to retain their freshness and increase their shelf life. Never store onions and potatoes together, as this can accelerate spoilage.
2. Don't Use Plastic Bags
To prevent onions from spoiling, ventilation is necessary, so never store them in a plastic bag. Instead, keep them at room temperature in an open basket, hole-punched in a paper bag, or in a container with ventilation.
3. Should You Refrigerate Onions?
No, refrigeration is not recommended for onions, as the cold and moist environment can cause them to spoil or become mouldy. It is best to store onions in a dry and ventilated place.
4. Buy Big And Layered Onions
When buying onions, look for dry and layered ones. There should be no spots on the outer layer or moisture inside the onion, as this can spoil it. You can gently press the onion to check for freshness.
5. How To Store Peeled/Cut Onions?
To store peeled or cut onions, it is recommended to keep them in the fridge to prevent contamination. Raw onions that are halved, sliced, or chopped should also be stored in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag in the refrigerator. This method can help keep them fresh for up to 10 days.
Cooked onions should be refrigerated in an airtight container to last for up to four days, similar to other leftovers.
6. How To Store Onions In A Freezer?
Apart from extending shelf-life, refrigerating onions can slow down the enzymes that cause tearing while cutting them.
To increase the shelf-life of raw onions, they can be frozen. After peeling, chop or slice them as desired and store them in an airtight container, or freezer bag, or wrap them tightly with aluminium foil or plastic wrap. Raw onions can be kept in the freezer for up to eight months, while cooked onions can last for up to 12 months.
How To Check If An Onion Is Spoiled/Bad?
To identify bad or spoiled onions, there are three indicators: colour, feel, and smell. Dark spots or mold growth are signs of spoiled onions. Onions that have started sprouting should also be avoided. Soft or mushy spots on the onions indicate that they are starting to go bad. The scent of the onions also changes as they spoil, which can be detected through a sniff test. If the onions begin to smell bad, it's best to discard them.
Storing onions properly is crucial for keeping them fresh and extending their shelf life. By following the tips and tricks outlined in this article, you can store onions correctly and enjoy their unique flavour in your dishes for months to come.