This article is about blueberries that are a very popular fruit. People love blueberries because of their sweet taste and easy way of preparation. Blueberries can be a great healthy snack, but they can also be added to a salad or yogurt or used for baking purposes. But, do you know how long blueberries can last and how you should store them?
In this article we will tell you something more about blueberries and their shelf life. You will also learn how to store this fruit properly and how to tell if your blueberries have gone bad.
More about Blueberries
Blueberries are flowering plants with berries in indigo color. Blueberry fruits can be eaten fresh, but they can also be used as an ingredient in many baked goods. When you are buying blueberries, you should always choose those that have a deep blue color with a silvery frost on the top.
Also, blueberries should have a smooth and tight skin. Blueberries are low in calories but they are high in nutrients. They should be a part of our diet because they have many health benefits for people.
What Is the Shelf Life of Blueberries?
The shelf life of blueberries depends on how they are stored and on the time when they were picked. Like almost all other fruits, fresh blueberries usually don’t have a best before date or a use by date, so you should be based on the date when blueberries were purchased. But, sometimes blueberries are purchased in a package that is labeled with the date when blueberries were packed.
Also, if you buy frozen blueberries they will probably have a best by date. Blueberries have longer shelf life than other berries and they can be stored about two to six weeks. Frozen blueberries can last for six to nine months if they are constantly frozen.
How To Store Blueberries Properly?
Proper storage is one of the most important factors when we talk about the shelf life of blueberries. Before you store the blueberries, you should sort them. It means that you should sort the fresh blueberries from the blueberries that have gone rancid.
Also, you should pull off the stems, although most of them have already fallen off from blueberries. Stems are not harmful, but they taste bitter and people usually don’t like them. It is important to store blueberries in a sealed airtight container, in order to keep out moisture and different contaminants. Any moisture that is left on blueberries will cause the mold to appear. It is best to put the container with blueberries in the fridge. If you want to extend the shelf life of blueberries it is also important not to wash them if you don’t want to eat them right away. You should wash blueberries just before eating them. Sometimes it is recommended to wash blueberries with vinegar water that kills mold spores and prevents mold to appear.
If you want to store blueberries for a long term, you can freeze them. First you should spread the blueberries on a baking sheet and to place it in the freezer. After two hours, you should take out blueberries from the freezer and transfer them into freezer safe bags or airtight containers. Then you can return them into a freezer. If you want to defrost blueberries, you should place them into a bowl and keep them at room temperature for an hour. After that period you can use blueberries for baking.
One important thing is that you should not keep blueberries frozen for too long because frozen fruits generally tend to form ice crystals because of their high water content.
How To Tell if Blueberries Have Gone Bad?
You will easily notice if your blueberries have gone bad. Actually, blueberries will change in texture and they will become too soft and mushy.
Also, blueberries will change in color and it is possible that mold starts to appear on them. Mold is usually found around the stem area. You should know that moldy blueberries should be thrown away immediately. It is very important to know which blueberries have gone bad before storing them.
As we have said, you should discard all bad blueberries because if you put them into the same container with the fresh ones, fresh blueberries will also go bad. Because of that, you should carefully sort the blueberries. It is best to discard any blueberries that are too soft because it means that they are too ripe and that they will rot quickly.
As you have seen, blueberries have a shelf life about two weeks, but they sometimes can last for up to six weeks, if stored properly. Frozen blueberries can last several months. It won’t be difficult to tell if your blueberries have gone bad, because they will become soft and moldy. In this case you should throw them away.