How to Use Paper Towers to Make Your Veggies Last Longer

Paper towels can do more than wipe up spills.

Photography: Shutterstock

Finding your vegetables wilted and mushy is not pleasant. Food waste is a growing concern, especially at home where many of us do not know how to properly prepare, store, and use up as much of our food products as possible. Learning how to store food, especially perishable vegetables and other common grocery items, is the only way to do this. 

To make our vegetables stay fresher and last longer in the refrigerator, here are vegetable storage tips we learned using paper towels for the kitchen: 

1. Line your vegetable drawer with paper towels. 


The biggest enemy of vegetables is excess moisture. Water can lead to your veggies becoming soggy and accelerate the ripening process faster than normal. You may see gardeners wrapping plastic around plantsÂto trap the CO2 that helps ripen your food on the vine, tree, or bush. However, we do not want this to happen in the refrigerator because this same gas can also speed up the rate at which your vegetables will rot, too.

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Unless you want your tomatoes, carrots, and cucumbers to continue to ripen while in storage, prevent this by removing the plastic wrapping it came in. Then, to help keep your vegetables crisp and more moisture-free, line your crisper or vegetable drawer with paper towels to soak up any more of the excess water that might still be on your vegetables when you washed them. 

2. Use damp paper towels for leafy greens and herbs. 


Just like other vegetables, absorbing excess moisture is what paper towels will do, which in turn will prevent them from wilting and turning to mush. This is especially important for leaves and leafy vegetables since leaves can wilt faster than hardier vegetables with peels and rinds. 

You might already be doing this to your herbs, but this technique of using paper towels to keep herbs fresh applies to lettuce leaves and other leafy greens, too. To store these leafy vegetables and keep them tasting and looking fresh for weeks, gently wash and then wrap greens in paper towels. Place these in either plastic containers or plastic bags in the paper towels. Herbs can even be stored in the freezer for even longer than a few weeks. 

3. Use dry paper towels to prevent slimy mushrooms. 


If you buy fresh mushrooms, this trick is especially useful Mushrooms can easily bruise, soften, and begin to turn slimy when trapped in the plastic container you bought it in.

Instead, remove the plastic, and then feel free to dunk the mushrooms in water to rid the fungi of any dirt and grime before storing. Then, prevent your fresh mushrooms from becoming slimy in storage by wrapping each in paper towels before refrigerating. 

Do you have any food and grocery storage tips you would like to share? 

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Join our Facebook group Yummy Pinoy Cooking Club, to get more recipe ideas, share your own dishes, and find out what the rest of the community are making and eating!

This story originally appeared on

* Minor edits have been made by the editors.

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