Here’s the thing: if I could, I would literally plant an entire field of basil. It’s my favorite fresh herb and one that I could eat pretty much every day. But until my garden is fully up and running, I’m at the mercy of the fresh herbs I buy at the grocery store thats an hour away from our home! Because of this and how inconvenient it is to go to the store frequently, I’ve had to research how to store fresh herbs at home. So today I wanted to share some of my best tips and tricks with you! Even if you don’t live in a remote community like us, these tips are guaranteed to help reduce food waste and help you eat more fresh herbs with your meals!
Here’s what I wasn’t prepared for when I first started looking into how to store herbs: there is a bit of information you need to know first in order to know the best way to store them! For example, there are actually different types of herbs which factors into the best way to store them. Also, the way you wash your herbs matters! Here’s a bit of basic info about herbs to get started:
Tender vs. Hard Herbs
The key to storing fresh herbs is to first know what kind of herb you are storing. There are two types: tender and hard. Tender herbs are basically those that have a soft stem and leaves. While hard herbs have a woody stem. Here’s a breakdown of each kind for your reference:
- Bay Leaves
Want to dry your herbs? Try making this easy DIY herb drying rack!
How to wash fresh herbs
When it comes to washing herbs, always rinse them under cold water. Typically, I rinse my herbs at least twice before drying them. Also, remove any dead or wilted stems or leaves.
Then, spin in a salad spinner to remove potential debris like bugs and dirt. I also love this because it means that the herbs will always be ready for you to use while cooking!
Minimize Food Waste With These Easy Tips: How To Store Fresh Herbs In The Fridge
There is actually a lot of information about the best way to store fresh herbs in the fridge. I tried out these 3 methods and wanted to share my personal experience on each.
Method 1: Wrapped in a slightly damp paper towel in a plastic bag
The most common method for storing herbs that I found is to wrap them in a damp paper towel, then place them in a resealable bag and pop them in the fridge. This is perfect for storing woody herbs such as oregano, rosemary or thyme.
Method 2: In a glass of water
The best way to store tender herbs is by trimming the ends before washing and spinning to dry. Then, fill a glass jar with about an inch of cool water. Place the bundle of herbs in the jar, similarly to a bouquet of flowers. Just like with a flower arrangement though, make sure there aren’t any leaves in the water because those will rot and affect the water.
Some herbs, such as cilantro, mint and dill, also like to be loosely covered. You can use a plastic bag for this by simply placing it over the entire bundle and jar. Place the jar in the refrigerator in a spot where it won’t get knocked over (speaking from experience here…).
Method 3: OXO GreenSaver Keeper containers
While these first two methods are tried-and-true, I have to admit… I’m lazy and sometimes I just want to unpack my groceries and be done with the chore. Because of this, I invested in a few OXO Good Grips GreenSaver Herb Keepers — and I’m obsessed!
OXO is one of my favorite kitchen tool brands because they put so much thought and intention into each of their products. This herb keeper provides air circulation and humidity which then help to preserve the herbs for longer. You can add water to the bottom to keep herbs hydrated, as well.
In full transparency, these GreenSaver keepers are my go-to for storing pretty much all of our fresh produce these days because our fridge isn’t the most efficient and because it helps us save money by eliminating food waste. I cannot recommend them highly enough! Even though I do sometimes still use the other methods mentioned in this post, these containers make it so much easier. Gotta love that!
How Long Fresh Herbs Will Last
And finally, I wanted to give you a quick overview of how long you can expect your herbs to last in the fridge, regardless of which storage method you choose to use:
- Basil – 2 weeks
- Chives – 1 week
- Cilantro – 3 weeks
- Dill – 3 weeks
- Marjoram – 2 weeks
- Mint – 2 weeks
- Oregano – 2 weeks
- Parsley – 1 week
- Rosemary – 3 weeks
- Sage – 2 weeks
- Tarragon – 3 weeks
- Thyme – 2 weeks
Do you have any tips and tricks to share about how to store fresh herbs in the fridge?? I’d love to know what has worked for you! Leave a comment and let me know.