Do Apples Last Longer In The Fridge Or On The Counter?

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You are trying to figure out the best way to store apples in your kitchen to keep them fresh for the longest time. Some people store their apples on the counter, while others put them in the fridge. We've researched to break down the differences between these methods of apple storage and will let you know which one preserves the apples for longer.

Apples last up to three months stored in the fridge, but only about seven days when stored on the counter. Wrap each apple individually to get the longest lifespan. Do not store near other fruits and vegetables in the fridge because ethylene gas can cause other produce to ripen and spoil more quickly. 

Now that you know apples last longest when stored in the fridge, you probably want more details. This post will break down how to preserve your apples for the longest possible time, whether apples can be stored in the freezer and how long they will last at room temperature. We will also tell you whether you should wash the apples before storing them. Keep reading to learn more.

Female hands and basket with fresh apples in fridge, Do Apples Last Longer In The Fridge Or On The Counter?

Apples In The Fridge Vs Apples On The Counter

Apples last as much as ten times longer when stored in the refrigerator when compared to storing them on the counter at room temperature. Apples can stay good for one to three months in the fridge. The ultimate number varies based on how they are stored in the fridge and how fresh the apples are.

How Do You Keep Apples Fresh Longer?

Storing apples in the fridge is the way to get the longest shelf life. If you have fresh apples and individually wrap them, they can last up to three months. The goal is to prevent apples from touching each other. You can wrap each apple with a paper towel, brown paper bags, or wax paper. This prevents the apples from touching and preserves freshness for the most extended time.

Close up of woman hand taking red apple out of refrigerator in kitchen

How Long Do Apples Last At Room Temperature?

You can keep your apples on the counter if you plan to eat them within a week. Five to seven days is considered the lifespan of apples sitting on the counter at room temperature. Apples will begin to bruise, lose nutrition, and have a mushy texture. This does not mean that the apples are no longer okay to eat, but it does mean that the texture and flavor will not be as good as a fresh apple.

Is A Wrinkled Apple Safe To Eat?

Apples will begin to shrivel or wrinkle over time, which signifies that it is no longer fresh. To test whether the apple is fresh enough, you can squeeze it. You shouldn't be able to squeeze out any juice. Make sure there is no mold on the apple. If the apple otherwise looks good, then it is safe to eat.

If you only like to eat fresh apples, you may not like the softer texture of an apple sitting out. You can use these apples in smoothies or desserts. You can feed them to your pet. If that apple looks a little shriveled, it is likely still safe to eat. Make sure it has no mold, cut off any bruises, and proceed with eating or cooking with the wrinkled apples.

How Should I Store Apples In The Fridge?

Woman taking apple from fridge

The best place to put apples is individually wrapped in the crisper drawer. This will provide the most freshness and keep them from potentially bruising each other. You can wrap them in paper towels, brown paper bags, or wax paper.

Apples do let off gas that causes other fruit and vegetables to go bad. This means you should keep them separated from ethylene-sensitive fruits and veggies.

Which Fruits And Veggies Are Ethylene-Sensitive?

Asparagus, avocadoes, cucumbers, eggplant, grapes, mangoes, onions, peaches, pears, peppers, squash, sweet potatoes, and watermelon are all ethylene-sensitive. This is according to a list made by the UC San Diego School of Medicine. These fruits and vegetables should not be stored next to apples in the refrigerator. Otherwise, they will ripen and go bad very quickly.

Which Fruits And Veggies Are Ethylene-Safe?

Blueberries, cherries, snap beans, oranges, raspberries, strawberries, and tomatoes are not affected by ethylene. These fruits and veggies can be safely stored next to apples in your crisper drawer, in the cupboard, or on the counter. Make sure if you store any other produce next to your apples that it is one of the fruits or vegetables on this list.

For more information about storing apples, check out this post: How To Store Granny Smith Apples.

Should You Wash Apples Before Storing?

Young woman washing ripe apples in kitchen

Fruit should never be washed before storing in the refrigerator or on the counter. This is true for apples and all other kinds of fruit. Washing the fruit adds moisture, which will cause the fruit to go bad more quickly. Bacteria can grow while you store the fruit, so you want to wash it right before eating for the best results.

Washing your apples before storing them is not advisable. If you insist on doing so, make sure you dry off the apple thoroughly, so there is no moisture present on the outside of the apple. This won't prevent it from going bad more quickly because the apple will absorb some of the water you use to wash it.

For more information about washing apples, read through this post: Should You Wash Apples Before Storing?

Can I Freeze Apples?

Apples can be frozen and kept for several months before use. Keep in mind, the texture of apples changes after freezing them. You will not want to thaw the apple and eat it raw. It is best to use in recipes, such as cake or cobbler. When preparing apples to freeze, there are different ways you can store them.

If you don't have time to core, slice, and peel them, you can store whole apples in the freezer. You must wrap them in plastic, but they will require some processing before using them.

If you want to save time for easier use when you unthaw the apples, it is best to prepare them first. Slice, peel, and core the apple so that you can easily use them in your recipes after removing them from the freezer.

What Is The Best Way To Prepare Apples For Storage?

Apple in open empty refrigerator ideal for diet

When storing on the counter or the fridge, you can leave apples whole and unpeeled. This will provide the most freshness and longest shelf life. If you plan on freezing your apples, you can make your life easier by peeling, coring, and slicing the apples before placing them in the freezer. You can purchase a good apple corer to help you get the job done fast.

Premium Stainless Steel Apple Corer

Click here to check this out on Amazon. 

Which Apples Have The Longest Shelf Life?

It's no surprise that the varieties of apples with the longest shelf life are the most common types of apples you will find at the grocery store. If you want to buy apples specifically for long-term storage, Gala, Fuji, Red Delicious, and Granny Smith are the best options.

However, it is interesting to know that apples in grocery stores can be up to a year old when you buy them from the store. This is due to chemicals, wax, and a temperature-controlled environment.

Apples and pears in crates ready for shipping. Cold storage interior.

If you pick fresh apples or buy them from a farmer's market, they will be more fresh and crisp. These apples will not last as long as grocery store apples, but you can preserve them for up to one year by freezing them.

In Closing

Apples should be stored in the refrigerator if you want to eat them raw or have the longest shelf life possible. Make sure to not store near ethylene-sensitive foods. Apples can be stored in the freezer for a shelf life of up to one year. Frozen apples will not retain the texture you love from eating a fresh, raw apple. They should only be used for cooking desserts or making smoothies.

For more information about apple storage, check out this post: How To Freeze Granny Smith Apples

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