How to store onions for a long time

It often happens that a few days after buying onions, they germinate. The reason is that you don’t store them properly. Light and humidity are the factors to take into account so that this does not happen.

Onion is one of the vegetables that we consume the most throughout the year. Sometimes we buy in bulk, but it’s necessary to store them properly so they don’t spoil.

If onions are not stored properly, they can quickly sprout, soften, or even start to mold from the inside. With the right conditions, you will ensure that your onions will stay fresh for several months.


Onion storage, the most important

When storing onions, there are three main things to keep in mind. To keep them fresh for a long time, they must be in the same place:

If there is too much light, they will germinate, so they should not be unprotected in the kitchen, but in a cupboard or cellar. It is also important to choose a dry place. Onions can start to mold from the inside if the humidity is above 70%, which is not very difficult in a kitchen.

Ideally, onions should be stored at a temperature between 5 and 10 ºC. As a place, the basement or a dark and airy pantry is very suitable for storage, since the temperature and humidity are low and there is little light.

It is also important that the air reaches the onions. Therefore, it is necessary to remove them from the plastic bag, and even from the net, immediately after buying them, since the onions are often squeezed into them and practically do not get air.

How to store onions in the kitchen?

If you don’t have a basement, you can also store onions in the kitchen. However, it is important that the place be dry, dark and cool. A compartment in a cupboard or a drawer, for example, are the most suitable for this. However, keep in mind that onions only stay fresh for a few weeks in the kitchen.

What is the best container for storing onions?

Only air-permeable containers are suitable for storing onions. In the cellar, it is better to store onions in paper bags or burlap bags or in an open cardboard box.

As an option, a woven basket or a hanging net is also suitable. You can also store onions in a paper or burlap bag if you store them in a kitchen drawer.

There are also clay or metal containers with lids and holes for storing onions. If you use this type of container, make sure it does not get too hot, ie do not leave it on the windowsill or on a radiator. Plastic bags and Tupperware are not suitable for storing onions.

Is it possible to store onions on a balcony?

You can also store onions in a cupboard on your balcony as long as it faces north and is frost-free (if you live in the northern hemisphere, the reverse will be the case). In addition, you need to take care that the onions are always dry. As soon as the temperatures drop below 4 degrees, the onions should be protected from the cold with a few layers of newspaper.

In case of rainy, foggy weather and warm temperatures in spring and hot in summer, it is better to bring the bulbs indoors, otherwise they will spoil quickly.

Can onions be stored in the refrigerator?

Onions should not be stored in the refrigerator. Although it is cold in the refrigerator, the humidity is high. In addition, there is often a lack of fresh air in the refrigerator, which causes additional problems for onions.

Cut onions, on the other hand, should be stored in the refrigerator. It is best to place them cut side down on a plate or store the chopped onions in a clean can or jar.

Can you mix onions with garlic?

Since onions and garlic have roughly the same storage requirements, it makes sense to store both bulbs together. The same requirements apply to garlic as to onion storage.

Do not store onions with potatoes

Do not store onions in the same container as potatoes. Although they have similar requirements, onions absorb moisture from potatoes, causing them to rot faster. Potatoes, on the other hand, shrivel up and germinate faster.

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How long do onions keep?

If you store onions properly, they can last for months. Once cut, you must use them within a period not exceeding four days.

When do onions spoil?

Fresh, edible onions are firm, plump and dry. If an onion has soft spots, black spots, or the individual layers are soft or dark, this indicates mold and rot. Although the onion does not smell bad, it is better to throw it away.

What if the onions have already sprouted?

If the onions have started to sprout and they are free from rot, i.e. the rest of the bulb is healthy, this chopped sprout can be eaten.

Another option is to plant them in the garden to continue their cycle.


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