Fridge space is valuable real estate, especially now that so many people are eating a majority of their meals at home. But even after you toss out the expired condiments that have been in there for years, your fridge still seems packed. Luckily, there’s an easier way to clear space in the fridge. Here are six items you probably thought needed to be refrigerated, but can actually be kept on the counter or in the pantry. Prepare to have your mind blown!
It may be hard to believe, but according to the USDA, butter is totally fine to keep on the counter in a container. That being said, there are some types of butter you should store in the fridge. According to U.S. Dairy, salted butter can be kept on the counter, while unsalted and whipped butters are best in the fridge. If you do move your butter to the counter, prepare to be amazed at the spreadability!
Vinegar-based hot sauces, as well as fermented sauces like soy sauce and fish sauce, don’t need to be kept in the fridge, according to foodsafety.gov. Storing the open sauce in the fridge, as many labels suggest, will prolong the flavors of the sauce. But most will be safe to eat even after months in the pantry, which is more than enough time to solve the jigsaw puzzle that is your fridge’s sauce shelf.
If oranges and grapefruits are taking up space in your produce drawer, feel free to move them to the counter. However, citrus fruits ripen faster at room temperature than they do in the fridge. According to the experts at Citrus.com, citrus fruits can store at room temperature for several days, so if you plan on saving them for longer than that, they should either be put in the crisper drawer or sliced up and frozen.
According to the National Coffee Association, the best way to store your beans is in an airtight container at room temperature. Storing coffee beans in the fridge can affect the structure of the beans and ruin the flavor. Freezing your beans is an acceptable option if you don’t want to store them at room temperature, just make sure you put them in an airtight container to avoid freezer burn.
Eggs (it depends)
This case is a bit trickier to crack, because it depends on where you live. The reason U.S. residents put eggs in the fridge, according to the Egg Safety Center, is because U.S. egg producers get rid of the egg’s protective layer during the decontamination process. In Europe, however, eggs maintain that protective layer so they can be kept at room temperature. That being said, farm fresh eggs can always be stored at room temperature, even if you live in the United States.
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