Do you find yourself asking, "Where should I store these dehydrated crackers?" or "Can I freeze this raw soup?" Good questions! After all, you want to keep your precious raw ingredients & recipes as fresh as possible, right?
In this post, I will discuss best practices for the storage of whole raw foods and prepared raw dishes, along with storage location and types of containers.
Not Storage Material!
Do not store your oh-so-yummy green smoothie in the fridge. You've probably learned this the hard way! Smoothies are best enjoyed straight out of the blender. If stored in the fridge, smoothies lose flavor and texture (consistency). A big ugh to stored smoothies!
Same with raw soups. Don't store your leftover tomato soup in the blender in the fridge (a double faux pas!).
When it comes to storing salad, don't store leafy greens with dressing already on board. They just aren't happy when you do that! Store your fave dressing in a separate container from your salad to avoid sogginess.
Store your prepared vegetables in individual containers. Each veggie has a different storage time. Shredded carrots won't last as long as chopped broccoli, for example. Plus you want your flavors to stay true, right? So store your veggies separately!
Where & For How long?
Dehydrated savory recipes: Store in the freezer! If you keep dehydrated items in the fridge, they will absorb moisture and go soft. Yuck! So store in the freezer! Toss your dehydrated goodies (like dehydrated burgers, crackers and pizza crust) in ziploc bags and freeze. Eat right out of the freezer or let sit on counter for 5-10 minutes.
Or you can even toss them in the dehydrator, just long enough to warm them up and take any extra moisture out. Dehydrated crackers retain their consistency and flavor extremely well. I recommend letting them cool off after dehydrating, then putting them straight into the freezer. Any nut-heavy dehydrated savory recipe will keep well in the freezer. Not the fridge!
Two weeks is my maximum freezing time for anything, but that's just me.
Desserts: Most of my raw dessert recipes are stored in the freezer (if it says to store in freezer, then make sure you do!).
This is a necessity for these recipes due to their ingredients (like coconut oil). Fruit-based desserts (like pies) store best in the freezer, as the filling will leak into the crust and go all smooshy. I keep my desserts up to 2 weeks in freezer, if they last that long!
Raw food ingredients:
Here's a little trick I learned: store your fruits and veggies on the top shelf! This isn't so much about storage as it is about "visibility." When you open your fridge, immediately your eyes will be drawn to your healthy raw food items. It's a psychological thing, and it works (for me, at any rate!).
However, I do prefer my fruits at room temperature, not cold. So while I keep these items in the fridge, every day I put the ones I'm going eat on a plate on the counter. It's a good way to keep track of how much I'm eating as well as rotating out the older items.
Onions and root veggies: Store in a dark cool location.
Nuts & things: Ideally in the fridge or freezer, so the oils in the nuts don't go off. However, I store my nuts, along with seeds (chia, flax, etc) and dried fruits in the pantry, grouped together by type so they're easy to find. I also group together my 'wet' items like honey, olive & coconut oils in the pantry, as well.
I like to store liquid-y items in glass mason jars. Glass is great for not leaching flavors or oils or color from the item (like from sun-dried tomatoes in oil). Glass pyrex bowls with rubber lids (or good old cling wrap!) also work well.
Tupperware is good, along with ziploc bags for goodies like cookies and crackers.
Ideally, store your food items in containers that offer visibility (yes, again with the visibility!). You want to be able to see what's going on inside!
I hope this has answered some of your raw food storage questions! Please do feel free to share your favorite storage tips and experiences!
You can also listen to the Raw Food Storage Hacks podcast right now!