I'm a bit unsure about which fruits and veggies should be kept outside the fridge and which inside. It seems that apples, oranges, and bananas, are normally kept outside, and melons, watermelons, etc are kept inside. How do I know which ones should be kept inside and which should be kept outside?

Also, apart from making sure that fruits are stored on a different rack of the fridge than veggies, are there any other guidelines about storing them? I.e certain fruits that shouldn't be stored together, or anything?


3 Answers 3


Apples, pears, and many other fruits are kept in cold storage after harvest, and keeping them in the fridge after buying them will help them keep longer. Pears, peaches, and other fruits that are sold on the green side, should be removed from cold storage a day or two before using, to allow them to ripen a bit more. Berries should be unwashed and refrigerated, and only washed right before using them.

Only a few fruits and vegetables are hurt by being refrigerated. Bananas will turn brown, and tomatoes lose flavor.

Some veggies, such as winter squashes, have a long shelf life outside of the fridge, and refrigeration does not really add to that.


The most suitable range of temparatures for the storage of fruit is about 4-8 degrees Celsius. Fridge temperature varies between 0 and 10 degrees.

Perishable fruits which contain lots of water (eg, strawberries) can be stored at the bottom of the fridge. However, remember that you shouldn't wash them first.

When it comes to citrus, it can easily be stored in the fridge for some time. However, they should be washed before storing.

It's not recommended to keepfin the fridge fruits, which ripens under the influence of temperature, such as apples, pears, bananas. You can, of course, put them into the fridge for a liitle time to prolong their lives, but it's better to store them at room temperature to ripe and became tastier.

If you decide to keep the fruits in the fridge - remember that they must have air flow. Do not keep them in airtight bags or containers.


Find a grocery store (or grocery store chain) that you trust has done their research (I would think the bigger the better), and see how they setup their displays. This would be especially reliable for items that store always carries (if they get, say, fresh peas once a year, they might not have done the research.) Always reuse the research others have paid for.

  • 2
    I have never seen a grocery store which displays fruit or vegetable in a fridge. But there are some which have cooling and wetting systems which keep the produce at a temperature cooler than ambient, but warmer than fridge. Both cases seem to not be applicable to home storage :(
    – rumtscho
    Mar 16, 2014 at 17:45
  • Rumtscho, you are, of course, right. But though produce coolers are calibrated specifically for produce, the principle is still the same.
    – LeBeau
    Mar 17, 2014 at 3:44

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