Worth the Wait

June 26, 2014


image by Trisha Krauss 

During my farmer’s market trip, I was sure to load up on fruits and veggies, but (as usual) I tried to get some less ripened produce to carry me through later in the week.  This spring/summer I’ve been putting my produce straight into the fridge after the market, but after a little research learned that is not always the best thing to do… Here is my breakdown of where and when to wait out the “ripening game”:


  • Berries
  • Watermelon
  • Pineapple
  • Citrus
  • Grapes
  • Cherries

Refrigerate these items and eat right away.  The listed items are picked and sold fully ripe, so make sure your produce smells sweet before your purchase (it’s not going to get any sweeter). 

Wait it Out

  • Cantaloupe
  • Stonefruit (peaches, plums, nectarines)
  • Tomatoes
  • Avocado
  • Figs

These fruits/veggies will ripen overtime (but NOT sweeten).  Leave them at room temperature until ripe (they will smell fragrant), then transfer to the fridge, if you won’t be able to eat them immediately (except for the tomatoes… never put them in the fridge!). You can speed up the ripening process by storing produce in a paper bag. 

Really Wait it Out

  • Papaya
  • Pears
  • Bananas
  • Kiwis
  • Mangos

The produce listed above will ripen AND sweeten when stored at room temperature.  Refrigerate only as a last chance option (when food is right about to spoil). 

Does anyone have any other advice on how to remember whether to refrigerate or leave it out? I failed at coming up with an acroynm  or catchy song to remember…

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1 Comment

  • Reply Josee June 26, 2014 at 7:02 am

    Just make a small chart and tape it inside one of your cupboard doors….eventually you will just remember automatically like an often used recipe 🙂

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