To store cauliflower in the refrigerator, remove any plastic wrap and place it in a perforated or mildly open bag, including a damp paper towel to maintain proper moisture. Typically, it can last up to 7 days in the refrigerator.
The most common problems concerning storing this type of veggie in the fridge are that it turns yellow or brown, loses freshness and brittleness, and develops weird smells. To minimize the risk of those issues, let’s clarify the best methods on how to store cauliflower in the refrigerator, how to avoid common problems, and tips to keep it fresh.
Related: List of vegetables from A to Z
How To Store Cauliflower In The Refrigerator?
The most popular way to preserve fresh cauliflower is to refrigerate it in the fridge. The first principle is that since this vegetable needs air to breathe, you should discard the plastic cover left from the shop and place it in a bag with holes or slightly opened.
Besides, proper humidity is essential to keep the vegetable from turning brown and drying out. By wrapping it with a damp paper towel, you can provide appropriate humidity and absorb surplus moisture during preservation.
And last, this type of veggie can quickly get squashed. So don’t overstuff the fridge and make sure there’s enough space for it.
Best Ways To Keep Cauliflower Fresh
Store fresh cauliflower in the fridge
- Separate the veggie from the plastic cover, then loosely wrap it with a damp paper towel to maintain proper moisture and retain freshness.
- Place it in a perforated or mildly open sealed bag to provide a breathable environment. This type of vegetable will be healthy when it can breathe.
- Press out excess air from the bag and put it in the crisper drawer for up to a week.
Freezing cut cauliflower
- Cut it into pieces (about 1 inch)
- Blanch them in boiling salty water for about 3 to 5 minutes. This quick heat treatment will kill the bacteria and retain its freshness.
- Post-blanching, soak them in ice water to keep their color and texture.
- Drain and dry out the veggie on paper towels, then store it in freezer bags or freezer-safe containers in the freezer for up to 12 months.
How To Choose Fresh Cauliflower
The florets are densely packed, tightly closed, and uniformly colored. So it shouldn’t be soft or mushy or go with any brown spots.
The leaves and stem are lively and in a bright color instead of wilted or limp.
Also, it should go with no smell or a super mild scent. Otherwise, you shouldn’t buy any with an intense or weird smell.
How To Know When Cauliflower Is Going Bad
- When it smells terrible: This type of vegetable initially has no or a super-mild scent. However, once the smell starts to become nasty or overwhelming, it has turned worse.
- When it changes the texture: Its nature is firm and tight. Once it turns loose or mushy, you should remove the bad parts before it’s too late.
- When it changes color: If it develops dark or black spots on the head or goes with green and black mold areas, discard the affected parts and keep the edible ones.
- When it grows slime: Most veggies get slimy after a while stored in the refrigerator. Consider cutting off the slimy area and safely eat the rest.
Should I Store Cut Cauliflower In Water?
You shouldn’t let cut cauliflower in water for too long. Instead, just use a damp paper towel to maintain moisture to store it in the fridge. The only situation when it’s recommended to soak it in water is right after blanching, before freezing it, but for some minutes only.
How Do You Keep Cauliflower From Turning Brown?
Cauliflower turns brown for two main reasons: oxidation occurs when long exposed to the air and moisture or lacks acidity during the cooking process. Here are some tips for retaining a vibrant white color.
When storing: For refrigerating, don’t forget to wrap it with damp paper towels, plus keep the head upward to prevent excess moisture from collecting on it. For freezing, blanch with saltwater, then move to ice water.
When cooking: Add about ½ cup of milk to the water if you are boiling it. In the case of steam, add 2 – 3 tablespoons of lime or vinegar to the water.
Also, it is still ok to eat with pale brown spots when there’s no problem with the texture and smell. Otherwise, if it develops to dark brown and mushy texture, chances are it’s getting worse and shouldn’t be eaten.
What Happens If You Eat Old Cauliflower?
Old cauliflower is still edible in many cases, even when it changes its color, texture, and scent. The key here is if the problem is not serious yet, you can remove the damaged area and eat the healthy parts.
Usually, rotten veggies offer a terrible smell, texture and even grow bacteria. So does this type of veggie. Once you notice serious problems such as intense smell or slime and mold have dominated, consider changing to another fresh one.
Should You Wash Cauliflower Before Storing?
Typically, you shouldn’t wash it before storing it in the refrigerator since excess moisture will support mold growth. Instead, it should be cleaned only when you are ready to use it. The only exception here is in the case of freezing its pieces, you can wash it before chopping and blanching.
How Long Can You Keep Cooked Cauliflower In The Fridge?
With proper preservation, cooked cauliflower can last about 3 to 5 days in the fridge. To refrigerate it, place it in a resealable container or wrap it with aluminum foil or plastic wrap.
Can I Cut Cauliflower Ahead Of Time?
You can cut it ahead and store it in the fridge for about 2 to 3 days. So how to store cut cauliflower in the refrigerator? Just put it in an airtight container or sealed bag and place it in the fridge.