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Strawberries are a delicious fruit, one of the first berries to enjoy in the spring. But if they aren’t stored properly, they can mold. Here’s how to keep strawberries from molding, with 3 of the best ways to store strawberries. Depending on how long you need them to last.
While you could just leave the strawberries in the container from the store, it’s not the best method for extending their shelf life.
If they don’t end up molding from moisture. They could get dried out and whither up.
Which doesn’t make for a very appetizing strawberry to bite into. But by following a few quick steps you can extend the life of your fresh strawberries in the refrigerator.
A Few Questions About How to Store Fresh Picked Strawberries
How Long Do Strawberries Last? This all depends on when they were picked and the variety of the strawberries. Some softer berries only last a day or two. But other firmer strawberries like the ones you purchase at the store can last longer.
If the berries look fresh and shiny, they are more than likely fresher. If they look dull and a little withered, they will probably be older. Be sure to inspect your berries closely before you purchase them.
How long do Strawberries last after picking? Fresh strawberries 3 to 7 days in most cases.
How Long do Strawberries Last at Room Temperature? Strawberries will continue to decay if stored at room temperature. They will only keep a couple of days. So it’s best to place them in the refrigerator after purchasing to help them last longer.
Should Strawberries be refrigerated? Yes, you should refrigerate your strawberries once you bring them home from the store. It will help keep them fresh longer, prevent decay and slow down molding.
How long will strawberries last in the fridge? Most strawberries will last 3 to 7 days stored in the refrigerator. But you can extend their life expectancy in your fridge a little longer by following the tips below.
What the best way to keep strawberries fresh longer? I’ve found with a little prep you can help keep your berries fresh and flavorful a little longer after harvest. They are quick and easy steps to take that can really extend the strawberries life.
Follow one of the 3 ways below depending on how long you need to store your strawberries. And how much time you have to prep them too.
How to Keep Strawberries from Molding
To find the best way to store your fresh strawberries you need to decide how long you need them to last and how much time you have to prepare them.
If you and your family will eat the berries in three to seven days, follow the steps for how to store fresh strawberries in the fridge below.
If you need your strawberries to last a week. Follow the second tutorial below. And if you need them to last up to two weeks follow the last tutorial.
Taking the time to prepare the berries can make all the difference in how long of a shelf life they will have.
The 3 Best Way to Store Fresh Strawberries
Now let’s get started with the basic items you’ll need for storing fresh picked strawberries the longest.
Items Needed for these 3 Storage Ideas for Fresh Strawberries
The items below are the basic items needed to use for all three methods. You may only need a few of the items depending on which method you choose. But I’ve put them together here with links to the items if you want to purchase them.
Just so you know, some links below are my referral links. Which means when you purchase through the links I can make a little money at no extra cost to you. Thanks! See my disclosure policy for more information.
Want to see all 3 fresh strawberry storage methods and the bonus method in one video? Watch the video below it will take you through all the steps in each method.
Looking to see one method only? Here’s the time stamps for each section so you can watch only what you need or want to watch.
First Method, 3-7 days storage start at 0:44
Second Method, 7-10 days storage start at 1:45
Third Method, Up to 2 weeks storage start at 3:09
Bonus Lazy Method, Up to 10 days storage start at 5:36
Videos not your thing? Keep reading for the written version of each…
How to Store Fresh Strawberries in the Fridge
The first way is for when you’ll be consuming your strawberries in less than a week. No need to do a lot of prep for this method. Just be sure to gobble up your berries before a week has passed.
A few things to do and not to do…
Don’t wash your strawberries. It’s best to keep the moisture down and let them be.
Be careful when you handle the strawberries. Use a light touch as to not bruise the strawberries.
Sort the strawberries before putting them in the refrigerator, removing any moldy or bruised berries.
Place your strawberries in an airtight container. Place a paper towel in the bottom of your store container and place the strawberries in a single layer.
Make sure none of the berries are squashed when you place the lid on. Store in the refrigerator. When ready to consume your strawberries, remove from the container, remove the stem and wash.
If you need your strawberries to last a bit longer, use the next method.
How to Store Strawberries for a Week…
After bring strawberries home from the store you’ll want to prepare them for the refrigerator.
Inspect the Berries
Inspect the strawberries for any mold or bad spots. If a strawberry has mold on it take it out and set it aside.
If you are wondering if it’s safe to eat strawberries with mold? It’s not recommended to eat strawberries with mold on them because they are soft fruit and the mold can penetrate them. But the rest of the berries in the container should be good. Just inspect them well.
If the strawberry is just bruised but not moldy don’t add it to the container for storage. It could mold more easily and make other strawberries go bad. Instead, cut off the bruised area and eat those right away.
Remove the Stems
After inspecting the berries and sorting them. You’ll want to remove the stem from the strawberry. You can do this with a knife or with a strawberry huller.
Store in a Lined Container
Once the berries stem end has been removed place them in a container lined with a paper towel. Place the stem removed side down. And cover with a lid.
Don’t wash them first, just place them into the container in a single layer.
If more than one layer is needed place a paper towel between each layer.
When you are ready to consume them, wash them and then eat.
Storing them this way will keep them fresh for about a week. Need to store them longer use the next method to extend their storage to two weeks.
How to Clean and Store Fresh Strawberries
If you want to keep your strawberries longer than a week in the refrigerator, you’ll want to prepare them to remove mold spores and keep them fresh longer. Following the steps below to clean and store the strawberries first. Which can help you store fresh strawberries for up to two weeks.
How to Store Strawberries for Two Weeks…
Sort the Strawberries
Go through the strawberries carefully and remove any berries that are moldy or bruised. Throw away the moldy berries and consume the bruised berries. If you store bruised berries, it could shorten the storage life of all the berries.
Don’t Remove Stems, Use a Soak Instead
Instead of removing the stems we will soak the berries in a vinegar wash. This wash will help to remove any mold spores and help keep the berries fresh longer. Don’t worry your berries won’t taste like vinegar.
Make a mixture of 1/4 cup of vinegar and 2 cups of water. Place it into a large bowl and add the strawberries. Let the berries sit in the vinegar bath for about 3-5 minutes. Then drain.
Rinse the Strawberries
Once the strawberries are done soaking give them a good rinse under cold running water. To remove any debris that is left on them. It’s best to use a colander for this step.
I often put the berries inside of my colander, then place the colander inside of a bigger bowl to soak.
When the soaking time is up, you can pick up the colander and then rinse the berries. It makes for less handling of the strawberries and less chance of bruising them too.
Let Dry Fully
Lay your strawberries out on a paper towel or draining rack. I use my dehydrator trays for this it works great. But if you don’t have one lay them in a single layer on a paper towels and let them fully dry.
Place in a Lined Container
Once dry place your berries in a container lined with paper towels. It’s best to place them in a single layer. But if you need to have over one layer, add a paper towel between each layer.
This keeps the moisture down and there is less chance of spoilage.
Place the lid on the container and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Check the Strawberries Often
Be sure to check your strawberries while they are being stored. If you see one berry going bad, be sure to remove it quickly so the other won’t go bad too.
One Easy Bonus Strawberry Storage Tip…
Don’t have to to fuss with the strawberries. This tip may work well for you. I’ve had it work well but I know not everyone will have glass jars to store their strawberries in.
That’s why it’s a bonus tip but for those who have a glass jar with lids this method works great for those days when you are feeling lazy about preparing the strawberries to store.
How to Keep Strawberries Longer, the Lazy Version
Take your strawberries, sort them but don’t wash them or take the stems off. Just place them into a glass jar and then place a tight-fitting lid on it. Place in the refrigerator.
Remove the berries and wash when ready to eat.
This method works beautifully to store strawberries for about a week.
Why don’t I include it above and it’s only a bonus storage tip?
Because you need to have a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid.
Most people have plastic containers to store their produce in. So it’s more convenient to use one of the methods above.
But if you have canning jars with lids or empty pickle jars with lids, this method is super easy to use. But if you don’t have those items on hand use one of the other methods above.
That’s how to keep strawberries from molding. Pick the method you want to use depending on how much time you have to prepare your berries and how long you need to keep them.
If you need to keep your strawberries longer, you can always freeze them for later use or dehydrate them for longer storage.