Should You Keep Potatoes in the Fridge?


Question:  I always store my potatoes in the pantry, but a relative says they’ll keep fresher in the refrigerator. Is that true?  

Answer: The refrigerator is not the ideal place for your potatoes.

As the United States Potato Board notes, refrigeration can cause potatoes to darken during cooking and to develop an unpleasantly sweet taste. The reason is that the chilly environment of the fridge helps to convert the potato’s starch to sugar.

If you store your potatoes in the pantry, on the other hand, you won’t have that problem. At normal room temperatures, they’ll keep for about one to two weeks, as noted here.

Better yet, if you can find a storage area with a temperature of about 45° to 55° F, your spuds should last up to three months.

If you must refrigerate your potatoes (for instance, if you lack pantry storage space or your kitchen is very hot and humid), bear in mind that the potatoes will likely develop a sweet taste and darken when cooked. You can help to offset this effect by storing the potatoes at room temperature for several days after removing them from the fridge.

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