Everybody knows that meat, poultry, eggs, and milk should always be stored in the fridge. But did you know that some of the items that we usually keep in the pantry are better stored in the fridge, too? Yes, there are actually many foods that you should refrigerate so as to stay fresh for longer. To help you out, here’s a list of 10 foods you better be keeping in the fridge.
1. Chia seeds
If you want to extend the shelf life of your chia seeds, then this is one of the foods to store in the fridge. The high content of healthy fats, such as omega-3 fatty acids means that chia seeds can easily become rancid when left at room temperature for months. Refrigeration helps slow down the oxidation process thus preventing the seeds from going bad.
2. Bread or Tortillas
Although there are various kinds of bread and tortillas, they are typically made with ingredients such as flour or corn, water, and sometimes oil. All these ingredients can make bread and tortillas more susceptible to spoilage in case they are not properly stored.
So consider refrigerating them so as to help extend their shelf life and prevent them from spoiling. It would also be a good idea them in either an airtight container or a plastic bag. As a result, moisture can’t get in and cause the tortillas to become stale or moldy.
3. Nut and Seed Butters
Both natural and homemade nut and seed butters like peanut or almond butter and tahini contain lots of unsaturated fats from the nuts/seeds. These fatty acids can turn rancid over time when exposed to heat and air.
Another reason to store nut and seed butters in the fridge is to keep their consistency firm and prevent them either from separating or becoming too oily.
However, if you use commercially processed peanut butter with added preservatives, then you can store it at room temperature for a while as well.
Similar to chia seeds, flaxseed is certainly one of the foods you should refrigerate if you want to retain its nutritional value. Flaxseed is rich in nutrients like fiber, protein and omega-3 fatty acids. By keeping it at a lower temperature, you can help preserve its nutritional content for a longer period.
5. Whole Wheat Or Almond Flour
Whole wheat flour, almond flour, and other healthier flours are also foods you should refrigerate so as to prolong their shelf life. Unlike all-purpose white flour, the whole wheat variety is more likely to become rancid and absorb moisture over time. So, keep it in the fridge in an airtight glass or metal container to extend its shelf life as well as retain its high nutritional value.
6. Soy Sauce
You may be surprised to learn that soy sauce should go to the fridge as well. Firstly, you certainly will extend its shelf life. Secondly, it contains naturally occurring microorganisms that can continue to ferment the soy sauce over time, especially after you’ve opened it. So, keeping it in the fridge prevents further fermentation. And last, but not least, refrigeration reduces the risk of bacteria, mold, and yeast growth.
7. Dried Fruits
If you like dried fruit, then you most probably have some in your pantry. However, dried fruit is one of those foods that is better stored in the fridge for a number of reasons. Not only will you keep it fresh for longer, but you will also minimize the risk of rancidity.
Moreover, keeping dried fruit at a cooler temperature inhibits the growth of mold and deters pests, such as beetles or weevils that may be attracted to the sweet scent of dried fruit. For best results, store it in an airtight container or resealable bag. As a result, you will prevent moisture absorption and exposure to odors from other foods.
Walnuts come next on our list of foods you should be frefrigerating because they quickly become rancid at room temperature due to their high oil content. Refrigerating will also help maintain their texture. When refrigerating walnuts, it’s important to place them in an airtight container. This will certainly protect them from moisture and odors absorbed from other foods.
9. Maple Syrup
If you want to prevent spoilage, then you’d better keep your maple syrup in the fridge. Otherwise, after opening is that it can sometimes develop mold on the surface (speaking from experience!). Refrigerating maple syrup will certainly help maintain its original flavor for longer than syrup stored at room temperature. And when you want to pour it over your hot pancakes, simply take it out of the fridge and leave it at room temperature for 10 minutes before using!
Fruits come last on our list of foods you should refrigerate. You may oftentimes keep different types of fruits at room temperature, but this actually speeds up the ripening process. So, if you want them to last for longer, you should refrigerate the fruits once they have achieved the perfect level of ripeness.
More Healthy Living Tips
Well, now you know which foods you should be refrigerating! For more healthy living tips and ideas, check out these articles as well: