Limes could be called the fruit of the gods, weren’t it for their tangy taste because they have many health benefits. They are a great and economical source of vitamin C and B9 and boost digestion by increasing digestive juice production.
Limes can last up to six months if stored properly, so you can buy them in bulk without worrying that they will go to waste. The best way to keep them is in the fridge, either loose or in a bag inside the crisper drawer. You can even put them in a vacuum bag to increase their shelf life.
Unlike apples and bananas that you can buy when they are still hard because they continue to ripen after they are picked, limes only decay. Knowing how to store them the right way will help you get the best out of your limes for longer. Keep reading to learn how you can perk up your cuisine all year round.
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The Best Way to Store Limes
Because we only give you the best tips here, we will tell you the best way to store your limes and keep them juicy and fresh for longer.
Store your whole limes in sealed bags to keep their moisture and protect them from drying out. Put them inside your fridge’s crisper drawer. Crisper drawers have a different humidity level than other compartments of your fridge. They keep your produce fresher because they let ethylene escape, preventing your fruits from rotting quickly.
Limes should stay away from bright lights because they will turn their rinds yellow. Your limes will still be good to eat, but they will have an overly ripe look.
Also, make sure that your limes will not be squashed by other fruits and vegetables. It’s best to have a designated space for citrus fruits in your fridge. Check them regularly and look for signs of mold. Discard any limes that have gone bad immediately so that they don’t contaminate other produce.
Remember to clean your limes with water and soap before storing them anywhere.
What Temperature and Humidity Should Limes Be Kept in?
Limes should ideally be kept at a temperature of 48° F (9° C). Warmer temperatures cause limes to decay faster, and excessively low temperatures will cause chill damage.
Limes need lots of humidity to prevent water loss. Ideally, you should keep your limes at a relative humidity level of 90%.
Storing Zested and Sliced Limes
Zested limes need extra protection, so tightly wrap your fruit with plastic wrap before refrigerating it.
For sliced limes, put them in an air-tight container or a freezer bag. Squeeze the air out and set your lime slices with the flesh pressed against the surface of the container or bag. That way, you will lock in moisture and prevent them from drying out.
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Storing Lime Juice
Lime juice gets sour very quickly if it’s not stored correctly. Freshly squeezed lime juice should be used or frozen within two to three days, tops. You can use a lime squeezer and freeze the juice in ice cubes. Then, use it for cooking, baking, or infusing it with water.
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We are not talking about unrefrigerated, store-bought lime juice. Those come with a best-by date and have preservatives added to make them last longer or are pasteurized. You can keep them in the fridge for six months.
Can I Keep My Limes on the Counter?
Technically, yes, but they won’t last long. However, if you choose to keep limes on your counter, avoid sunny and dry areas. If you notice your limes are getting harder, that’s a sign that their life is ending, and you should use them soon.
Can I Freeze My Limes?
You shouldn’t freeze whole limes. Instead, you can freeze the lime juice or lime slices.
How Long Are My Limes Good for?
Depending on how you store your limes, they will be good for different periods.
- Fresh limes on the counter last for two to four weeks and for one to two months in the refrigerator.
- Cut limes should be consumed on the same day or stored in the refrigerator for two to three days.
- Processed lime juice lasts for six months from the opening date.
- Processed limeade lasts for one to two weeks from the opening date.
- Lime peels last for three weeks in the refrigerator.
- Extra tip: after you clean your limes, put them in a vacuum bag. Place the vacuum hose into the valve until all the air is removed. Then store them on the lower part of your fridge. They should last for up to six months!
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What to Look for When Buying Limes
How you buy your produce will also determine how long it will last in your home. Below are some tips to help you shop smarter the next time you go to the grocery store.
- Thin-skinned limes are the juiciest.
- Stay away from limes that feel hard when you touch them.
- Check for brown spots. Those mean limes are reaching their end of life.
- Buy limes that have a bright green color — yellow limes indicate they are getting spoiled.
- Purchase limes that are blemish-free and have a glossy skin texture.
How Can I Tell if My Limes Are Getting Short in Life?
Limes that have gone bad will show discoloration, feel mushy or spongy, and show mold signs. If they have lost their moisture, they will be hard, brown, and look like they are withering away.
On the inside, your limes will also be dry. You won’t get much juice, and the little you do will taste sour. Brown spots will give limes a moldy taste.
If your limes stay under direct sunlight for too long, they will turn yellow and will have a bitter taste. That doesn’t mean they are bad, but that they are fully ripe and should be consumed fast.
Lime Mistakes You Will Never Repeat
Not correctly storing your limes can lead to food poisoning and unnecessary waste. Here are some common mistakes people don’t realize are costing them a lot of trouble.
- Storing your limes in the wrong fridge compartment: Remember that you should always keep your limes in the crisper drawer.
- Storing limes uncovered: Putting limes inside a bag locks in moisture and prevents them from drying out quickly.
- Leaving limes under the sun: When you decide to keep your limes on the counter, place them away from direct sunlight. Warmer temperatures make limes decay faster.
Use Your Limes!
Limes have so many health benefits and are an excellent ingredient for desserts, drinks, and savory dishes. You can use them in sauces or accompany fish and poultry. And the best thing is that they are available all year round!