Besides their delicious tastes, strawberries and grapes are also known for their sensitive storage needs. These fruits tend to go bad easily, meaning you’ll need to be extra careful when looking to extend each fruit’s shelf life. Can you store strawberries and grapes together?
Strawberries and grapes can be stored together. Strawberries and grapes both emit low levels of ethylene gas. In addition, they both aren’t overly sensitive to the gas making it safe to store the two fruits together.
Are you curious to learn more about storing grapes and strawberries? Then you are in the right place. In this read, we will discuss how to store these fruits and keep them fresh enough for both short and long term use.
Smoothie Tip: In addition to grapes, add frozen strawberries and blueberries into your smoothies instead of ice. The result is a more nutrient dense, better tasting beverage your taste buds will love. Also, freezing fruit will help preserve it so you can buy in bulk!
The secret to an easy smoothie is having a blender powerful enough to handle the workload. The blender I recommend has a multi-tiered blade, check it out and the current price on Amazon, Nutri Ninja BL685 with Auto-iQ Technology.
Disclaimer: Some links in this article are affiliate links which means I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
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Do Strawberries and Grapes Thrive When Stored Together?
When looking to store your fruits and veggies, checking on ethylene sensitivity is highly recommended 1. As a rule of thumb, you should never store ethylene producing fruits next to fruits or vegetables that are sensitive to ethylene 2.
Compared to strawberries, grapes are slightly more sensitive to ethylene, meaning ripening strawberries may interfere with your grapes’ freshness if stored together. Due to this, it is advisable to store strawberries and grapes independently.
But if you must store these two fruits together, be sure to remove overripe strawberries from the bunch, just to eliminate the chances of fastened ripening. If you often have strawberries and blueberries, like I do for my smoothies, you may wonder if they can be stored together. Check my blog post on it, you may be surprised, Can You Store Strawberries and Blackberries Together?
Also, check on the storage environment. When stored outside the fridge, fresh whole strawberries normally last for a maximum of 48 hours before they lose flavor and start to rot. Compared to strawberries, grapes can last longer (up to 72 hours) on the countertop.
Therefore, storing these two fruits at room temperature for over a day isn’t advisable since strawberries will ripen faster. The overripe strawberries will, in turn, interfere with your grapes’ freshness, consequently reducing shelf life.
How to Store Strawberries
Similar to other fruits, the best method to store strawberries depends on when you intend to eat them up or use them in a recipe. Some of the best methods are listed below.
Store Your Strawberries at Room Temperature
If you want to gobble up your strawberries immediately, or a couple of hours after visiting the store, then you can store them at room temperature. The golden rule, however, is to wash or rinse your strawberries only before consumption 3. Rinsing increases the risk of mold growth, which does little to keep your berry fresh and safe for consumption 4.
Store Your Strawberries in the Refrigerator
In case you’re buying strawberries for use at a later date, then the best storage method is the refrigerator. Remember, these fruits don’t maintain their freshness for too long, so you’ll need to store them properly, preferably in the crisper drawer.
When storing strawberries inside the fridge, the same rule of no rinsing applies 5. Just remove the strawberries from the container and place them (unwashed) in a clean, partially closed container or paper bag 6.
But before you put the berries inside the new container, place a paper cloth at the bottom to help avoid excessive moisture. After you’ve laid down the paper cloth, carefully place one berry at a time, checking for potential mold. While placing strawberries on top of one another won’t do much harm, doing so can trap excess moisture, consequently leading to mold.
Soak Your Strawberries in Vinegar
Soaking strawberries in a vinegar solution can keep them fresh for up to two weeks. But if you want to store strawberries for longer, then you will need to cut them up and freeze them.
A vinegar bath is an ideal way to keep your berries in tip-top shape for up to two weeks. The trick is to mix ¼ cup of vinegar and 1.5 cups of water. However, the amount of vinegar used should vary depending on the number of strawberries lined up for soaking.
Soak the strawberries for five minutes and rinse them gently with running water once done. Again, you’ll need to place a paper towel on the container’s edges for maximum moisture absorption. Cover the container and place it in the crisper drawer.
Your freezer will come in handy when looking to store your berries for several weeks or even months. However, before freezing your berries, you’ll need to remove the stems. Afterward, put the berries on a baking tray (single layer) and place them in the freezer until they all become solid.
Once all your berries have frozen, put them inside a freezer bag or an airtight container and place them deep in the freezer 7.
How to Store Grapes
Here are some tips to keep your grapes fresh and delicious.
Check Your Grapes Thoroughly Before Purchase
Similar to berries, increasing shelf life starts by checking out the bunch for rotten or half-spoilt grapes. Be on the lookout for brown and brittle stems that aren’t strong enough to hold grapes in place. The ideal bunch should have round and fleshy grapes that are firmly attached to a green stem.
In case you spot a bloom (a waxy or powdery, silvery-white substance), you shouldn’t confuse it for pesticides or harmful toxins 8. Grapes normally produce bloom to preserve moisture and keep harmful bacteria away. So you shouldn’t hesitate to grab a bunch that has loads of bloom.
Wash Grapes Only When Necessary
Avoid unnecessary rinsing or cleaning when dealing with grapes 9. Similar to strawberries, grapes are highly susceptible to mold formation, which in turn promotes rot.
Therefore, if you must wash your grapes before use, be sure to dry them gently, one piece at a time. Use a paper towel to dry your grapes before placing them in the fridge.
Allow Your Grapes to Have Proper Air Ventilation
Although not mandatory, grapes thrive in environments with proper air ventilation. You’ll notice that almost all (if not all) grapes come in well-ventilated plastic bags. These bags are designed to allow for adequate air circulation, which is needed to keep grapes fresh and tasty.
The best way to store grapes is in the fridge, more specifically inside their plastic bags. The crisper is humid enough to accommodate grapes, but you’ll need to open the plastic bags to allow for adequate air circulation. Point to note, though, grapes tend to pick scents easily, so you should keep them away from strong-scented items like onions and garlic.
You can place grapes in an airtight container if your intention is to store them for a couple of hours. But if you want long term storage, say a day to a week, then it’s best to give these fruits as much breathing space as possible.
However, for long-term storage, you can store grapes in airtight containers or plastic bags deep in the freezer. Grapes love chilly and humid environments, meaning they’ll thrive in the fridge environment.
Before placing grapes in the freezer for long term storage, put them inside a baking tray and allow them to freeze independently. Once they are all solid and frozen, you can transfer them into tightly closed plastic bags.
Keeping your grapes and strawberries fresh and tasty is all about proper storage techniques. Luckily, one thing these fruits have in common is their love for chilly environments, meaning fridge storage is enough to keep them fresh.
Both strawberries and grapes have low ethylene emission rates. In addition strawberries are not sensitive to the gas making it safe for them to be stored together. However, for improved freshness and taste, independently storing them is recommended.
And since grapes and strawberries are known to develop mold when exposed to moisture, you shouldn’t rinse them if you aren’t planning on immediate consumption.
For long term storage, you should consider storing both grapes and strawberries deep inside the freezer. The low temperatures keep bacteria inactive, allowing you to preserve the freshness of your tasty fruits.
Read Next – More Food Storage
- The University of Maine: The Role of Ethylene in Fruit Ripening
- University of San Diego: Ethylene in Fruits and Vegetables
- University of California: Strawberries: Safe Methods to Store, Preserve, and Enjoy
- Wikipedia: Mold
- HUFFPOST: Why You Should Never Wash Your Fruit Before Refrigerating It
- Ecology Center: Farmer’s Market Tips Storing Fruits & Vegetables
- National Center for Home Food Preservation: Freezing Strawberries
- Consumer Reports: Q&A: Is the cloudy coating on blueberries safe to eat?
- The American Heart Association: Keep Fruits & Vegetables Fresher Longer