In this article we’ll discuss a couple of foods that are typically stored in the refrigerator but don’t really require refrigeration. Sure, some may keep longer in the fridge but if you don’t leave them out for months you will be fine.
Actually this is more of a visual matter as bananas turn black in the fridge, making them not very appealing to the eye. They also tend to become mushy because of chilling injury, which means their cell structure gets damages. Bananas are best kept at room temperature.
Refrigerating tomatoes sucks the flavor right out of them. The cell structure will break down and leave them all mushy instead of firm and juicy.
Have you ever seen refrigerated ketchup packets at fast food joints? Right! There’s a good reason for it too. You don’t want to spoil your delicious burger or fries with cold ketchup, do you? Ketchup is a very acidic product, which means you can easily keep it for a month without refrigeration.
Just like ketchup, mustard has high acid content because of the vinegar inside. This will retard bacteria growth and assure the mustard won’t spoil anytime soon. If you don’t use it a lot, however, it is recommended to refrigerate. Watch out for changes in color, texture or flavor.
It’s ok to store butter in the pantry when you live in a moderate climate and use it up quite fast. It will be easier to spread on your morning toast too!
But mayo contains eggs, doesn’t it? Sure, but in modern commercial mayonnaise the eggs are pasteurized, which means they don’t require refrigeration. The vinegar or lemon juice brings acidity, keeping bacteria away. A cool dark place should suffice.
Peanut butter won’t go bad when stored in your cabinet and sure as hell will be a lot easier to spread. Nevertheless always check the label, some organic brands recommend refrigeration.
It is not necessary to keep maple syrup in the refrigerator. This is because the syrup contains enough sugar to prevent it from going off. By the way, it’s more difficult to pour cold maple syrup over your delicious pancakes.
If you want your honey to be smooth and runny, keep it out of the fridge. Honey will thicken and crystallize when kept cold.
Jam is meant to be kept in the pantry. It’s called a preserve for a reason.
Just like fish sauce, it’s ok at room temperature. Soy sauce does not require refrigeration to maintain its quality and taste because of the high salt content.
If you stick to the use-by date, there should be no problem keeping them unrefrigerated. Mind however that eggs do like constant temperatures, so don’t store them close to a heating source in your kitchen.