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3 Methods To Keep Your Greens Crisp for Over a Week

A few days after opening a bag of greens, the leaves tend to become sad, wilted and slimy. Wilting is especially common when purchasing tender greens like mesclun and spring mix. But, is it possible to store salad greens so that they last longer than one week?
Let's take a look at three common methods to store your greens and decide which of these three is most effective:
Method 1: Paper towels and a plastic bag

This is perhaps one of the most common ways to store lettuce. This method includes washing and drying the leaves, placing the laid out leaves on paper towels and then rolling them up and putting them in a plastic bag (making sure there is little air left inside the bag as possible).  Place the leaves in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator.

How it works: In this method, the paper towels absorb the excess moisture from the greens, which keeps them from getting slimy. Meanwhile, the sealed bag keeps excess air from circulating, slowing down the wilting process.

The results: After 5 days, the greens will appear fresh, no wilting or bruising. After 7 days, some of the leaves may have wilted, but are still edible. After 10 days, the paper towels will appear damp, but not soggy. Most of the leaves, however, will appear slimy and rotted, making them inedible.
Method 2: Box and paper towels

In this method, a plastic storage container is lined with paper towels. The greens are placed in an even layer on top, then covered with another layer of paper towels. The container's lid is sealed shut.

How it works: Similar to the method above, the paper towels help absorb any moisture from the greens. The box protects the leaves from getting bruised and knocked around by other foods.

The results: As described in method 1, after 5 days, the greens will appear fresh, no wilting or bruising. After 7 days, some of the leaves may have wilted, but are still edible. After 10 days, you'll notice a couple of soggy leaves, but most will likely be crisp and edible.
Method 3: A plastic bag and a puff of air

In this intriguing method, the greens are placed in a produce bag. A puff of air is blown in to inflate the bag, then top is twisted and closed with a rubber band.

How it works: The air supposedly provides enough carbon dioxide to keep the greens fresh.   


The results: After 7 days, the leaves are still crisp enough to eat. Come the 10th day, however, the bag will likely have a lot of condensation built up in it, with a couple of slimy leaves stuck to it. For the most part, the greens may still be crisp enough to eat, but they will appear to be well past their prime.


So, which of the above three methods work best? For crisp and long-lasting greens, opt for method number 2. However, the other two methods work well if you're not planning on storing your greens for more than a week. 

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Related Topics: tips, food, vegetables, salad, storing
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