Spinach, unfortunately, just doesn’t last as long as other vegetables.
Depending on storage conditions, an opened bag of spinach can go bad in as few as five days. Unless you’ve got a meal plan prepared in advance, it’s all too easy to let spinach go to waste.
So, one Redditor took to the r/frugal forum for tips on how they could better avoid this problem.
“I’m looking for suggestions on how to incorporate spinach into my cooking more or how to keep it for longer so I’m not wasting as much. Does it do ok being frozen if it’s going to get cooked? Thanks!” they ask in their post
A number of useful tips follow on the post, and the first comment offers the most straightforward solution: freeze the spinach.
Freezing prevents active enzymes and microbes from breaking down our foods and is a pretty convenient way to stretch the life of the quickly-wilting vegetable.
If you were worried about the loss of texture and flavor that results from freezing spinach, another Redditor recommends “blanching” the spinach before freezing.
Blanching is a preservation technique that involves briefly introducing produce to boiling water (around 60 seconds for spinach), and then quickly transferring the ingredient to a bowl of cool water to stop the cooking process. Boiling water is an effective way to slow down the natural processes of decomposition, though some nutrients are lost as a result of using this method.
Another great tip came in the form of meal suggestions: soups, omelets, and smoothies.
The freshness (or lack thereof) of your spinach can be easily masked in such foods. There is no shortage of ingredient combinations for these meals, and they may also represent an opportunity to clear out other foods that may soon be reaching their expiry date.
Though there’s no effective way to mask a spinach leaf that’s totally gone off, picking through the bag to remove particularly decomposed spinach leaves will not only protect your future dishes from tasting funny, but it will also help extend the life of the entire bag of spinach.
The suggestion from the post’s top comment came with plenty of acclaim.
“When you open the bag put some paper towels in, it absorbs the moisture (or helps to), keeping it fresher longer,” says the Redditor.
“This, and positioning the bag so the towels are at the bottom when the bag is placed in the fridge, is the single most useful thing I’ve ever learned on Reddit,” another adds in the comment thread.
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