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Food Storage - How long can you keep...

TOMATOES (INCLUDING RED, YELLOW, GREEN, CHERRY, PLUM, ROMA) - FRESH, RAW, WHOLE

Pantry
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1-5 days or until ripe
Refrigerator
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5-7 days once ripe
Freezer
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2-3 months

Tips

  • How long do tomatoes last? The precise answer to that question depends to a large extent on storage conditions - after purchasing, keep tomatoes in a dry area.
  • Properly stored, tomatoes will become fully ripe in about 1 to 5 days at normal room temperature.
  • How can you make tomatoes ripen faster? To hasten ripening, put tomatoes in a brown paper bag, close it and leave on the counter.
  • Do not refrigerate tomatoes until they are fully ripe - allowing to ripen at room temperature will result in more flavorful, juicy tomatoes.
  • To extend the shelf life of fully ripe tomatoes, place in a plastic bag and refrigerate; bring the tomatoes back to room temperature before using.
  • How long do tomatoes last in the refrigerator? Fully ripe tomatoes will last for about 5 to 7 days in the fridge.
  • Remove tomatoes from the refrigerator about 30 minutes prior to serving for best flavor.
  • Can you freeze raw tomatoes? Yes: (1) Wash tomatoes and pat dry; (2) Leave skins on, or if desired, peel tomatoes by dipping in boiling water for 30 seconds to loosen skins; (3) Leave tomatoes whole or cut into pieces; (4) Place tomatoes in a single layer on cookie tray in freezer; (5) Once tomatoes are frozen, transfer to airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags and return to freezer.
  • Frozen tomatoes will become mushy when thawed and are best used in cooked dishes.
  • How long do tomatoes last in the freezer? Properly stored, they will maintain best quality for about 3 months, but will remain safe beyond that time.
  • The freezer time shown is for best quality only - tomatoes that have been kept constantly frozen at 0° F will keep safe indefinitely.
  • How to tell if tomatoes are bad or spoiled? Tomatoes that are spoiling will typically become very soft, develop dark spots and start to ooze; discard any tomatoes if mold appears or if the tomatoes have an off smell or appearance.

Sources: For details about data sources used for food storage information, please click here

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