Tips and ideas for storing lettuce. Post yours below!
Do you find that fresh spinach or lettuce goes bad before you can get it eaten? Try wrapping the item in a dry paper towel and then put it in a plastic ziploc bag before storing in the refrigerator. I've been using this method for years and it really does keep things from spoiling a lot longer. My Grandmother taught me this, years ago. I have used it to preserve fresh vegetables and fruits longer in the fridge.
By Josie from Homer, AK
Direct contact with plastic produce bags causes lettuce and parsley to go bad quickly. To preserve the life of leaf lettuce or parsley, try wrapping them in paper towels, then place them back into plastic bags and put them in the crisper.
By Nancy from Madison, WI
I put my lettuce into one of those tupperware lettuce bowls, then always put a fresh napkin or paper towel on top before sealing. Works really good.
If you have a Tupperware bowl or storage container with a top. Wash your head lettuce under ht water, core it, drain it, and put in on a paper towel in the container. It remains crisp and fresh, not so sure if this works with leaf lettuce.
By Mary D.
I found out if I wrap my lettuce in paper towels in a Tupperware type bowl it will last a long time. The paper towels absorb the moisture. I live alone and have kept lettuce for 2 or more weeks.
By Brenda from Alabama
I have a foodsaver and love the canister for lettuce. I can keep a head of lettuce for a month in it.
I wrap stalk type lettuce (red leaf, romaine) in a couple of paper towels and store in an Evert-Fresh bag in the veggie crisper fridge drawer. http://www.evertfresh.com
If the lettuce is too wet, I change the paper towels later. I buy the bags in the produce section of the grocery. First saw them at Whole Foods Market, and later on at other grocery stores. If you get some, get a larger bag rather than smaller, as some lettuces can be quite large. I use the large size bag. Been using these bags for quite a few years. Am happy with the results. As the bag is a light green, it makes it easier to spot the lettuce in a hurry. The Evert-Fresh bag lasts a long time. And the directions say to change it with each new head of lettuce, I don't. I just keep reusing the bag until it needs to be discarded. I wash the leaves right before using. I used to close the bag with a twist tie, but now I just place the paper towel wrapped lettuce in the bag, tuck under the open ends and place it in the crisper.
When I buy romaine or leaf lettuce, I always take extra bags from the produce section of the grocery store. Since the lettuce is constantly getting sprayed throughout the day, when I get home, I take the lettuce (and I do this with everything that gets sprayed with water throughout the day,) I put it in colanders to drain off all the water. When I am sure that the stuff it dry, I put it in the plastic bags, and put it in the crisper of the refrigerator.
Alternatively, I sometimes use Tupperware Fridgesmart containers. These have buttons at the front which allow you to control the air flow into the containers. When I purchased these containers on E-bay, I was sent a chart that tells me what setting I need for various products. It works wonderfully, and keeps the produce for quite a long time, however, the draw back of these containers is that they do take up a lot of space in the refrigerator.
It's important to make sure that whenever storing produce, that you have made sure to get rid of all of the excess moisture and water. Failure to do so will result in rotting very quickly. I would also advise that people not wash the produce prior to storing, but rather that they wash it prior to using. It stays fresher that way. And if you wash it just prior to use, sometimes the cold water helps to freshen the stuff too.
Store lettuce with a paper towel and it will last longer. The paper towel will absorb moisture. If you are storing lettuce in a container, line the bottom of the container with a layer of paper towels.
I'm single, so I can't eat an entire bag of precut lettuce salad. After my first serving, I place two non-printed, white papertowels (don't want colored ink running into my salad) inside the bag. Then I store it upside down in the fridge so the towels are on the bottom. The next time I reach for salad, those two towels are wet and the lettuce leaves are pretty dry and rust free.
Never cut lettuce with a knife and when you go to store it, place it in a airtight container, it will last longer that way.
Put the lettuce in damp paper towels and then a cloth bag. I bought a cloth bag specifically for keeping lettuce and it says to have the bag completely wet -- I don't do that, just be the towels are damp. My lettuce has stayed fresh up to ten days with great taste. If it is wilted, soak in cold or ice water for 10 minutes and you'll have "new" lettuce.
I wash leaf lettuce in cold water, drain well, then store in a ziplock bag with a paper towel. Keeps the lettuce fresh for days.
Wash your lettuce and dry it on a towel. Once thoroughly dry, seal in a Ziplock bag. Do not store near apples, pears or bananas as the ethylene gas these fruits emit will help speed the ripening (and decay) process.
I read here once that you should wash your lettuce then place it in a bowl of cold water with a tight fitting lid. Keep it in the ice box. Your lettuce will stay crisp. When you use it, just take out what you want drain on a paper towel. Drain off water off of unused lettuce. And replace with fresh water. This holds true for other greens and salad fixings except tomatoes.
The large red plastic Folger's coffee cans make excellent storage for lettuce. They are good for other things too. Be sure to label the container. I especially love the handle on the container!
By Syd from Dunkirk, MD
You know it all depends on where the produce is coming from and how long it's spent in transit before we even buy it. My brother in law is a produce manager and he definitely said that wrapping veggies in paper towels does help keep it fresh longer. I do this with celery and it lasts a lot longer. I do not wash any veggies before they go in the fridge and you should never refrigerate tomatoes or wash them until serving.
I have spent the last 30 years working in the food service industry and had the opportunity to witness repeatedly the effects of different methods of storing all types of produce. Lettuce is very sensitive to repeated small changes in temperature. Keeping it in a tupperware or the crisper drawer will help avoid the 2 or 3 degree changes that occurs when opening and closing your walk-in cooler or home refrigerator. I have used a insulated produce locker in my walk-in for years. I'm sold on it.
By Chef Lawrence
I store my lettuce in foil and just take it as I need it. I use iceberg lettuce whole. I don't know if it works on other types. To restore limp lettuce and celery, place in cold water with ice. I do this in the sink which is stainless steel. (04/03/2007)
I soak a dishtowel in cold water and wrap my lettuce in it. Then I put the whole thing into a plastic grocery bag. I close it with a knot and put it in the veggie drawer in my fridge. Lettuce keeps close to 3 weeks (10/13/2008)
Excellent suggestions, I'll try the paper towel ones. (01/14/2009)
By Doris G.
I use the paper towel idea with strawberries, as soon as i bring them home from the store I put a folded paper towel in the box on top of the berries, it gives you a couple extra days out them. (01/14/2009)
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