The fridge was invented to keep our fresh longer by keeping it cold. While many foods need to be stored in the fridge, some are just fine without refrigerating, and others are even better off left out of the cold.
Some food will actually begin to lose its flavor when stored in the fridge; the texture may soften, and some will actually rot a lot faster. In order to keep your food fresh and flavorful, go through this list to see if you're storing them properly.
Garlic is actually supposed to be kept in a cool, dark place, like in a pantry or cupboard. When put in the fridge, it starts to go bad a lot faster. It will not only turn white and rubbery, but also start to sprout and grow mold the longer it is in there. However, because the outside of the bulbs don't usually change, you won't know it has gone bad until you decide to use it.
When potatoes are kept in the fridge, the cold temperatures turn their starch into sugar, making them sweet and gritty, which isn't very tasty. Instead, potatoes should be kept in your pantry or cupboard, unless, of course, you have a root cellar. They should also be kept in a paper bag rather than a plastic one because plastic bags don't allow them to breathe, causing them to rot faster.
When kept in the fridge, onions don't get enough circulation, causing them to become mushy or start to mold. Onions should also be kept in a cool, dry place, but separate from potatoes. When potatoes and onions are stored together, they tend to rot faster.
Oil may harden and turn into a more butter-like consistency when kept in the fridge. In fact, almost all oils can be left out in room temperature. However, if it has lower saturated-fat content, you should keep it in a cooler place, like a pantry.
Research shows that melons actually start to lose their antioxidants when stored in the fridge. Therefore, it's recommended that whole melons are stored on the counter at room temperature, at least until they've been cut. Any cut up melon should then be stored in the fridge.
Bananas should be kept on the counter because cold temperatures tend to slow down or altogether stop the ripening process of a green banana, a phenomenon known as “chilling injury.” If the banana is already ripe and placed in cold, the skin will turn brown, and the banana will become mushy.
In general, the cold temperatures damage the cells of the banana’s peel. If you want your bananas to ripen normally, keep them out.
Honey is best kept in your cupboard and can last a lifetime there. If placed in the fridge, the honey will start to crystallize and harden, making it much too difficult to spread.
Cold temperatures will turn your tomatoes mushy. Plus they will also begin to lose their flavor in the refrigeration. That's why it's recommended that you instead keep them out on the counter. If they're still greenish or not quite ripe, you can keep them on the window sill to ripen faster.
Apples are a lot like tomatoes, in that they will lose their texture and flavor when stored in the fridge. Apples will do just fine in a fruit bowl on the counter.
Bread should be kept on the counter rather than the fridge. Keeping your bread in the fridge will dry it out much faster. The only time you should refrigerate your bread is when it's made into a sandwich that you're storing for later. However, if you aren't planning on finishing the bread in a few days you should freeze it, where it can be safely stored for months.
11. Fresh Herbs
Fresh herbs tend to absorb smells, which ruins their flavor. Also, when kept in the fridge, herbs will dry out. The best way to store them is either on the counter, or wrapped up in an airtight container.
Coffee is a lot like herbs, as it will absorb any smell around them, making it impossible to store in the fridge. Once it has absorbed the different smells, it will never go back to its original flavor. Instead, keep it in an airtight container in a cool, dark place.
Avocados will never ripen fully if they're kept in the fridge. That's why you should store them on the counter instead. Once they are ripe, it’s okay to store them in the fridge, and this may even extend their lifespan by up to five days.
14. Winter Squash
All types of winter squash – pumpkin, acorn, butternut – should be kept out of the fridge, but rather stored in a cool, dark place. When left out of the fridge, it will keep its flavor and can last up to a month or longer.
15. Hot Sauce
Hot sauce, along with many condiments, can actually be stored in the fridge, but if you're looking to save space it will do just fine in the cupboard, too. In fact, it can last up to three years in a cupboard.
Check the label of store bought hot sauce, as some labels will recommend refrigeration after opening, and this instruction should be followed for safe food handling precaution.