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How to Store Strawberries

Strawberries are one of nature’s best gifts. Come peak season, from May to June, the sweet, ripe, juicy berries are so fragrant and delicious, they’re impossible to resist!

Baked Strawberry Pie Photo

Whether you’re bringing home strawberries from the field, the farmer’s market or your local grocery, you want to make sure you’re storing them properly, so they don’t go to waste.

But first things first. You need to choose the best berries.

Strawberry Banana Muffins Photo

Tips for Choosing the Best Strawberries

  • Look for red strawberries, without white tops. If they’re white on top, they’re not ripe yet.
  • Make sure there’s no mold. When buying a carton of strawberries, peek through the sides and bottom. If you see even one moldy strawberry, select a different box.
  • The strawberries should be bright and firm, not bruised.
Strawberry Banana Muffins Picture

Once you bring the strawberries home, the most important tip for prolonging freshness is not to rinse the berries until you’re going to use or freeze them. This will prevent mold.

Strawberry Pie Bars Image

How to store strawberries in the refrigerator

Keep the stems on and don’t wash the strawberries first.

Line a sheet pan with paper towels to absorb moisture and place the strawberries on them in a single layer. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for 5-7 days.

When you’re ready to enjoy the berries in a fruit salad, strawberry pie over pancakes or just right out of your hand, give them a cool rinse first, then remove their green stems. If any strawberries are getting overripe, use them in a refreshing smoothie.

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How to Freeze Strawberries

If you want to store strawberries for longer than 5-7 days, you’ll need to freeze them. Freezing strawberries during the spring and early summer, when they’re at their best, is a great way to ensure you can enjoy delicious berries during the off season.

To freeze strawberries, rinse them in a colander in the sink. Use a small knife to remove the stems and let the strawberries dry on towels.

Then, place the berries, cut side down, on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Freeze the strawberries on the sheet pan until they’re solid, which could take up to six hours.

Then, transfer the strawberries to freezer bags or containers, pushing out the air before sealing. Store the strawberries in the freezer for up to three months.

Strawberry Rum Pound Cake Image

How to Thaw Frozen Strawberries

The best way to thaw frozen strawberries is placing them in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight in a sealed bag or container. You also could place the strawberries in a bowl of cool water and change the water every so often. Don’t thaw strawberries in the microwave, because the texture will be soggy.

Homemade Strawberry Cordials Picture