If you wonder how to store eggplant, you aren’t alone. Personally, I found it all a bit confusing, so I did some research and talked with foodies to figure out what was the best.
One of the biggest areas of confusion was whether I should put eggplant in the fridge when first getting home from the store or store it on the counter.
If you find all of this confusing, you aren’t alone. We don’t just wake up one day and know what to do in the kitchen. We all have to learn one question and situation at a time. For example, I didn’t even know how to tell if my eggplant had gone bad. But now, I spend my life learning all such things and then sharing the details with you.
So let’s dive into the best way to store eggplant and what really matters.
- Remove the eggplant from any plastic bags
- Store eggplant at room temperature for 2-3 days
- Keep the eggplant out of direct sunlight
- Store the eggplant in a cool dark place with air circulation
- Don’t store the eggplant with fruits such as apples or bananas
Should you store it at room temperature
When trying to decide if you should store your eggplant at room temperature, the first question to ask yourself is when you will use the eggplant. If you plan to use it within 2-3 days, I recommend storing your eggplant at room temperature.
Storing the eggplant at room temperature will allow it to continue ripening. Eggplants do continue to ripen after they are removed from the vine.
This leads to the next point: if your eggplant is fully ripe, and you aren’t sure when you will use it, go ahead and store it in the refrigerator. But know that the freshness clock starts when you put it in the fridge. This means that you will need to use your eggplant within about 7 days from the day you put it in the refrigerator. This is why it is important to pick an eggplant that is not overripe.
How to store it at room temperature
There are two basic rules to storing eggplant at room temperature. The first rule is to put it in a cool and non-sunny place. The second rule is to keep it dry. The experts recommend that you keep it in a vented bowl.
First, remove the eggplant from any plastic bags. Your eggplant needs to breathe, which means that it needs fresh air.
I recommend keeping your eggplant in a bowl on the counter or in your pantry. Remember that you want to keep the eggplant away from the sun.
If your kitchen is like mine, there are certain times of day when the kitchen counter gets a lot of sun (if I have the blinds open). This means that I have to keep my bowl of vegetables out of that part of the kitchen.
Next, even though it will be tempting to do so, don’t store your eggplant in the same bowl as your fruit. I know that a big bowl of fruits and vegetables looks gorgeous out in the kitchen, but if you store your eggplant with your bananas or apples, your eggplant will ripen prematurely. What this means is that your eggplant will not last as long or stay fresh as long.
Storing Eggplant in the Refrigerator
When should you put eggplant in the refrigerator?
You should store ripe eggplant in the refrigerator, especially if you won’t use it for several days. You can store eggplant that isn’t quite ripe yet on the countertop, but after that, you should transition it to the refrigerator.
Ripe eggplant stored in the refrigerator should stay fresh for 5 to 7 days. The key is to store it properly so that it lasts longer.
How to store eggplant in the refrigerator
First, remove the eggplant from any plastic bags. Removing it from the bag is essential so it isn’t trapped in moisture. Next, wrap the eggplant in a paper towel or kitchen towel loosely. Finally, put the eggplant in the crisper drawer in your refrigerator.
When you put the eggplant in the crisper drawer, set the drawer to the high humidity option. It is best not to store the eggplant in this drawer with fruits such as peaches, kiwis, or plums, but you must wrap each fruit in a paper towel.
The bottom line
When you get home with your fresh eggplant, remove it from the plastic produce bag and then store it in a cool dark place. If you won’t use the eggplant for several days, go ahead and store it in the refrigerator.