Firm, plump, and bursting with tart-sweet flavor, blueberry is sure to wake up your taste buds while also satisfying your tummy. This nutrient-rich fruit is so sweet that we can eat a whole pint of these little jewels in less than a minute – when they’re at their best, that is.
Unfortunately, our blueberries aren’t always the best—especially when they turn moldy and messy before we can get to them. Nature’s candy should be eaten while it’s still fresh, which is quite possible if you know how to keep blueberries properly. Curious? Continue reading to learn how to keep your berries happy.
Preparing Blueberries for Storage
Separate the Good Ones
Look for berries with white, fuzzy mold and discard them. Around the stem, the mold is usually found. Remove berries that are too limp or wilted in appearance; they are overripe and may perish rapidly. Mold will not spread if you remove the bad berries.
Pull off Stems
Although most stems fall off on their own, it’s better to go check the berries and remove any remaining ones. If you consume them, they will not damage you, but they won’t taste good.
Rinse the Berries
In general, wait until you’re ready to consume berries before washing them. If you wash them too soon, mold can form. However, washing them in vinegar water kills mold spores and prevents mold from forming.
Place the berries in a strainer and immerse them in the vinegar water in a basin. Pull out the strainer after shaking it. Remove vinegar flavor by rinsing the berries with cool water.
Dry the Berries
If any moisture remains on the berries, they will mold quickly, so make sure they are totally dry before you store them. You can dry the berries in a few different ways:
Using a couple of paper towels, line the interior of a salad spinner and place the berries inside. Spin for a couple of seconds to remove any remaining moisture.
Place the berries on a tray and allow them to dry naturally. Use a fan if you want to dry the berries quickly.
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How to Store Blueberries in the Refrigerator?
Find a Container and Clean It
A ceramic bowl with slits can be used or a basket. To enable appropriate ventilation, the container must have small holes in it.
Anything made of metal should be avoided. Blueberries and metal can react, causing staining and spots on the fruit as well as the metal container.
Fold Paper Towel and Place It in the Basket
Use multiple sheets of paper towel if you’re using a larger container, such as a bowl. You don’t need to fold them.
Add the Blueberries
Put the berries inside over the paper towel in the basket. The paper towel will absorb moisture and help prevent mold growth.
Store the Blueberries
The top of the fridge is the coldest section. Keep the berries away from this part of the fridge, as the cold will damage them. The berries should be stored on the middle or bottom shelf.
Keep them out of the crisper as much as possible. Most crispers are overly humid and lack adequate circulation. Mold could result as a result of this. Blueberries can last five to ten days in the refrigerator.
How to Freeze the Berries?
Spread the Berries in a Layer across a Tray
The berries will be frozen separately at first. This will keep them from clinging to one another and clumping. A skillet, casserole dish, or baking sheet can be used as well. If you’re using a metal container, line it with parchment paper first to keep the blueberries safe.
Put the Tray in the Freezer and Wait until the Berries Freeze
The berries will totally freeze in around two to three hours.
Transfer the Berries into a Freezer-Safe Bag
Carefully remove the tray from the freezer so that no berries drop. You can either manually shovel them into the bag or just place the tray over the bag’s entrance.
Close the Bag and Put It in the Freezer
Once you have put the berries in the bag, simply put them in the freezer. The berries can last up to a year if stored properly.
How Long Do Blueberries Last?
If blueberries are placed out in the open, they will last for 1 to 2 days. In the freezer, they can stay fresh for about 2 weeks. If you freeze them, blueberries will stay good for about a year. Therefore, if you don’t plan to use them for a long time, storing blueberries in the freezer is the best option.
Blueberries don’t last long if you don’t store them properly. So, if you buy a bunch of them and plan to use them later, consider storing them in the refrigerator or freezer, depending on how soon you intend to use them again.