Mushrooms are delicate, so you need to know how to store mushrooms to ensure they stay fresh for as long as possible. The best practices for storing mushrooms include the proper temperature, humidity, light, and suitable containers.
The Importance of Proper Mushroom Storage
Mushrooms are a versatile and flavorful ingredient in many dishes. They also have a short shelf life, so proper storage is essential for keeping them fresh and safe to eat. Storing mushrooms the right way can help extend their shelf life, preserve their flavor and nutrients, and keep them safe from bacteria growth.
Be sure to check your containers of mushrooms for any signs of spoilage or rot. If you find any spoiled or rotten mushrooms, discard them because they can contaminate other nearby mushrooms. It’s also important to store mushrooms apart from other produce since they tend to absorb odors.
The Best Temperature for Storing Mushrooms
Mushrooms will last the longest if you store them at a temperature just above freezing. According to the Mushroom Council, the best temperature for storing fresh mushrooms is between 34 and 38 degrees F. The temperature in a refrigerator should be around 37 degrees, so the fridge is the best place to store your mushrooms.
Humidity and Ventilation
The right humidity and ventilation are essential when storing mushrooms. The most important thing is to keep them dry. Do not sprinkle the mushrooms with water or wrap them in wet paper towels. This can lead to discoloration, molding, or spoilage.
If you are storing them in plastic packaging, make sure it’s well-ventilated so moisture doesn’t build up inside the package and cause spoilage. If there are no holes in the plastic, remove it. Good air circulation is important for preventing bacteria growth.
Store your mushrooms in a dark place away from light exposure. The refrigerator is dark except when the door is open, so it is an ideal place.
The best container for storing mushrooms is one made from breathable material, such as mesh or paper. This allows air circulation to help prevent moisture buildup and mold growth. You should also avoid plastic containers since they don't allow for proper ventilation.
A great way to store mushrooms is inside a paper bag or wrapped in a paper towel. They will absorb moisture and allow air flow to help keep the mushrooms fresh. You can store mushrooms in their original container if they have plenty of ventilation and air flow. Be careful not to stack other containers or food on top of mushrooms because they might bruise.
Long-Term Storage of Mushrooms
If you plan to store your mushrooms for longer than a week, it's best to freeze or dry them.
To freeze mushrooms, clean them with a damp cloth. Make sure they are dry before placing them in freezer bags or airtight containers in your freezer. Frozen mushrooms should last up to 6 months.
You can also dry mushrooms by dehydrating them until they reach a brittle texture. Clean them with a damp cloth and allow them to dry. Dehydrate them in a dehydrator or the oven on a low heat. Store these dried mushrooms in a cool, dry place for up to 1 year. You will need to soak the dried mushrooms before cooking with them as they won't have the same flavor or texture as fresh ones.
FAQ about How to Store Mushrooms
Do mushrooms need to be refrigerated?
In general, yes, mushrooms need to be refrigerated. They will stay fresher and last much longer in the refrigerator. If you plan on using the mushrooms within 1-3 days, you can store them at room temperature away from direct sunlight. Mushrooms last about 1 to 3 days at room temperature.
How long do mushrooms last in the fridge?
Mushrooms will typically last in the fridge for up to 1 week. Presliced mushrooms may not last this long. Some common signs of spoilage in mushrooms include discoloration, a slimy surface, a strong offensive odor, and the presence of mold.
How do I store cooked mushrooms?
The best way to store cooked mushrooms is in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Cooked mushrooms will last up to 3 to 4 days.
Knowing how to store mushrooms can help them last longer and stay fresher. For best results, store fresh mushrooms in a paper bag or paper towel in the refrigerator for up to a week. With proper care, you can enjoy all the delicious flavors mushrooms have to offer.