How to Store Tomatoes (A Step-by-Step Guide)

When you start to grow yourself tomatoes at home, the very first aspect you’ll be able to notice is just how abundant they are, regardless of whether you don’t feel like you plant as many.

Due to this, it is a good idea to know how to freeze tomatoes, the most efficient method to store them, and the best way to preserve them for a long time. Many people want to know the best way to keep tomatoes safe so they can enjoy them for a longer duration. This article will give solutions to these and other questions related to the preservation of tomatoes.

Similar: How Long Will Tomatoes Last? (In In The Fridge)

Should tomatoes be stored in the refrigerator?

Storing tomatoes in a refrigerator is something you should contemplate when you’ve got plenty of tomatoes to go around But is it the best idea? In reality, the answer to that query will be “yes.”

If your tomatoes are ready to be eaten, put them on the counter when you are sure you’ll need to eat them over the next couple of days. It’s not necessary to keep tomatoes in the refrigerator, but it will make the tomatoes last for longer.

When you place tomatoes into cold storage such as in the fridge, it slows the decay process, which means they last longer.

If you store the tomatoes you purchase in cold storage; it is important to be aware that tomatoes purchased from stores will last longer than fresh-grown tomatoes and tomatoes bought at the market. This is because they’re grown without pesticides or chemical fertilizers.

How long do you have to store fresh tomatoes in the refrigerator? As a rule of thumb, the ripe tomatoes typically last between two to three weeks in the fridge, and for three to seven days if stored on your counter.

To store tomatoes within the refrigerator is easy:

  • Clean the ripe tomatoes.
  • Dry the tomatoes using a kitchen towel.
  • Store your tomatoes fresh in the drawer of your refrigerator.
  • Take the tomatoes out within 3 days, but check them regularly to ensure they’re not forming mold.

It is not recommended to place unripe tomatoes inside the fridge. The tomatoes that are not ripe should be kept in the room at room temperature and not touched and away from direct sunlight until they’re mature.

The maturing process of a tomato.

The best method to Store Tomatoes without a Fridge

It is possible to store ripe tomatoes in a refrigerator if you plan to prepare them to cook in a couple of days.

  • Put the ripe tomatoes in a cardboard container in one layer to prevent the tomatoes from pressing against each other, speeding up the rotting process.
  • The tomatoes should be kept by putting the stems face upwards.
  • Place the cardboard box in a cool, dry space like the cellar or pantry.

Second, tomatoes that are not ripe must also be kept in a refrigerator:

  • Place the unripe tomatoes in a bag of paper or in an aluminum container in one layer
  • The unripe tomatoes must be kept with the stems facing downwards.
  • Make sure to check if the tomatoes are maturing, and use them once they are ripe or store them properly.

How to store Sliced or Cut Tomatoes

When you begin cutting off a tomato and decide to slice, dice, cut, or chop it, the rules to store tomatoes may change. These are the general guidelines for storing tomatoes cut or sliced:

  • If you aren’t planning to eat a fresh tomato within the next day or two, then put it in the fridge.
  • If the tomato has been chopped or cut, the tomato must be placed sealed in an airtight container and stored within the fridge.
  • If you would like your halved or diced tomatoes to keep more than three or four days, you need to cover the exposed part of the tomato. Before putting it in the freezer, place it inside an airtight bag or container.

Cut red tomato.

Freezing Tomatoes

There are a variety of methods for freezing tomatoes that are ripe:

Method 1:

  • Cleanse the tomatoes and remove them from the tomato.
  • Take the core out of the tomato using the help of a knife.
  • Cut an X on the upper side of the tomato.
  • Place the tomatoes in an airtight bag. Remove all air out of the container, and seal it.
  • Store in the refrigerator. After they are frozen, the tomatoes will become hard as a rock.
  • When you are ready, you can take the tomatoes you’ll need to use from your freezer and then defrost them in the microwave for 20-30 seconds.
  • Remove the skin of tomatoes, starting from the part marked with an X. The skin will peel off with ease and cook as you like.

Method 2:

  • Cleanse the tomatoes, then clean them and dry them.
  • Core the tomatoes, then cut them into the sizes you prefer.
  • Place them on a sheet or plate, and protect them with plastic wrap.
  • Cool the tomato slices for 4 to 6 hours until they are completely frozen.
  • Transfer the tomato pieces frozen to a freezer. Take out the air, and then seal it. The freezer bags should be labeled with the dates.
  • The bag of tomatoes should be kept in the freezer and utilized when needed.
  • Utilize them within the first 60 days.

Method 3:

  • Clean the tomatoes, then remove them from the tomato.
  • Cook the tomato by submerging them in boiling water and letting them sit for a few minutes until partially cooked.
  • Remove the tomatoes that have been blanched from the stove and crush the tomatoes in a blender or food processor.
  • Transfer the tomatoes that have been blended into an ice tray, then freeze the tomatoes into cubes.
  • After they have been frozen, put the cubes in the freezer bag, then remove any air in the bag and seal it.
  • Use the cubes as needed.

Red tomato sauce is served in a white bowl.

There are several ways to store tomatoes in the freezer, but the main thing to remember is to use freezer bags with airtight seals and date-mark the bags to ensure they don’t stay in the freezer.

Important Things to Consider regarding Storing Tomatoes

How to store tomatoes after you cut them is easy once you understand that once the tomato has been cut to the desired size, it must be put in kind containers for tomato storage, such as an airtight container or one with airtight lids.

However, regardless of the type of tomato we’re discussing, such as ripe, unripe whole cut, whole, and cut, etc. – take note that, for the most part, tomatoes should be kept on the counter as they’re not yet ripe. They should also be kept in the fridge or freezer after ripening.

It’s also important to remember that when you pull the tomato out of the refrigerator to enjoy it and eat it, you must allow it to warm up to room temperature before consuming it. It usually takes about 24 hours to complete and is another thing to remember when you are a fan of tomatoes and have lots of them in your kitchen.

Storing tomatoes in the summer or winter months is a similar process. The rules are identical regardless of what kind of tomatoes you’re planning on keeping, though certain tomatoes, like Roma tomatoes – perform slightly better when you’re planning to freeze the tomatoes to be eaten later.

Final Ideas on How to Store Tomatoes

They are extremely nutritious and are an easy plant to grow; therefore, being aware of how you can store them and properly store them is essential. It is a good thing that storing them is much simpler than most people imagine.

Norah Clark

Norah Clark

Norah Clark, the founder and editor of YummyTasteFood! She's a seasoned food writer and editor with over a decade of experience in the hospitality industry as a former pastry chef, sous chef, and barista. When not writing about food, she explores new recipes or travels the world for culinary inspiration.

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