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How to make berries, broccoli, and bananas last longer

Some years ago, I wrote about how to make broccoli, strawberries, and bananas last longer. The post was originally a sponsored one, so it was in an out-of-the-way spot on my blog. Everyone is trying to stretch the time between their grocery trips these days, so I thought it deserved a republish.

Since I’m always trying to reduce the food waste at my house, I tried out a couple of food storage methods and I’m here to report on how that went.


Vinegar Wash for Berries

The rinsing-berries-with-a-vinegar-wash thing?


It is truly astounding how much longer berries keep after a vinegar rinse. Even things like raspberries and blackberries stay firm and fresh for days upon days.

And they don’t taste a thing like vinegar, either.

To do this, mix up 3 cups of water and a cup of vinegar (fortunately, vinegar is dirt cheap, so this is an inexpensive fruit wash.).

vinegar rinse for berries

Give the berries a soak for a few minutes.

berries in vinegar

Drain the berries and place them in a salad spinner lined with a tea towel (the original directions said to use a paper towel, which is compostable, but hey, I like to avoid waste when I can!).

drying berries

Give them a spin…


And place them back into their original container.

If you were lucky enough to buy berries without a package, you can put them into a reusable storage container.

I wouldn’t seal them, though, as berries do best if they can breathe.


Best Broccoli Storage

Remember the broccoli bag I was poking holes in last month, so broccoli would keep longer?

storing broccoli


I sort of accidentally gave that a really, really good test. The broccoli sat in my fridge for, um, an entire month.

And I am pleased to say that it was only slightly worse for the wear.

month-old broccoli

I’m super impressed with how well this worked.

Although I don’t really recommend that you store broccoli for a month if you can help it.


I rinsed my bag out, hung it up to dry, and I’ll definitely use it again next time.

Banana Storage Tips

I don’t really feel like any of these are silver bullets, partly because bananas seem to be a very fickle fruit when it comes to ripening.

Thank goodness there’s banana bread and banana muffins!

But, here are a few ideas to try.

  • Separate your bananas at the stems (I do this pretty regularly)
  • Wrap the top stem in plastic wrap (I rarely have plastic wrap around, so I don’t practice this one. You can see that the organic bananas above come with plastic on the stems.)
  • When the bananas are the perfect ripeness, put them in the fridge. The skin will turn brown, but the actual banana’s ripening will be paused.
  • If you have too many perfectly ripe bananas at one time, slice and freeze them for smoothie use.


  • Wash your berries with a 3/1 water to vinegar mixture.
  • Store your broccoli in a hole-y ziploc bag.
  • Try a bunch of things with your bananas. You will probably end up with spotty bananas anyway, and then you can make banana bread. Ha.

Do you have any tips about how to keep specific kinds of produce fresh? I’d love to hear!

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Ruth T

Wednesday 6th of May 2020

Asparagus does well if you stand them up in a cup with an inch or so of water in it.


Wednesday 6th of May 2020

Yes! I often do this.


Tuesday 28th of April 2020

I have found that celery keeps for much longer if you remove it from the plastic bag it comes in and tightly wrap it in foil!! Also, iceberg lettuce keeps longer in you unwrap it, remove any brown or damaged outer leaves, then store it in a Ziploc bag with one folded, SLIGHTLY damp, sheet of paper towel.


Friday 17th of April 2020

I always put my bananas in two plastic bags before they go in the frig. This keeps them pretty close to normal color even after a week.

Barb F.

Friday 17th of April 2020

I tried putting the bananas in "isolation" and wrappedstems with saran wrap. Didn't work, they still turned spotty.

Heidi Louise

Friday 17th of April 2020

And speaking of frozen fruit, frozen green grapes are very tasty. I "make" some if I can't eat the brunch of grapes fast enough.

Heidi Louise

Friday 17th of April 2020

"Bunch," not "Brunch," of grapes. Though I could enjoy an all fruit brunch, if someone else did all the prep work.

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