Storing Your Tomatoes In High Or Low Humidity

Last Updated on October 28, 2022 by Cinthia

Should you store tomatoes in high or low humidity in the refrigerator to extend their shelf life, or where is the right place to keep them?

There is no joy like going to the farmers market or the grocery store and shopping for your week or months-long groceries.  However, before you spend a ton of money on these expensive fruits and vegetables, be sure you know how to them fresh for the longest.

Let’s learn the proper humidity of vegetables that will enable us to store our fresh produce in the right place in the refrigerator.

The Refrigerator
Best Way To Store Tomatoes
Best Way To Store Tomatoes

A refrigerator has many compartments to store different kinds of foods.  The two drawers in the bottom of your refrigerator are called crisper drawers, and they preserve your vegetables.  If you want your vegetables and fruits to last long, it matters where you put them.

Most vegetables should go into the high humidity drawer, while most fruits should go into the low humidity.  Of course, there are some exceptions to this, so let’s look into it.

The Refrigerator

Some crisper drawers are labeled fruit and vegetable making it easy to know where to keep your supplies.   You can adjust the humidity level of the drawer by moving the slider.  The high setting allows the slider to close the window and hold more air and moisture inside. At the same time, a low humidity setting allows the slider to open the window, letting in more air out of the drawer.

So Why Does It Matter Vegetables Low Or High Humidity?

It matters because of ethylene.  Ethylene is a plant hormone available in fruits and vegetables.  Lots of fruits and vegetables release this hormone as a gas sign for fruit and vegetables to ripen.

Not all vegetables respond to Ethylene the same.  For susceptible vegetables, this gas makes them get over-ripe and get back very fast.  For example, suppose you trap an ethylene-sensitive vegetable like lettuce inside a high humidity drawer when it’s closed with an ethylene-producing fruit like an apple. In that case, the lettuce will go bad fast.

Now you know why your veggies have been going bad too fast. It’s because you mixed them with the wrong vegetables and fruits and kept the drawer closed.

However, opening the little window in the drawer to make it a low humidity drawer is enough to let thEthylenene out.  The rest of the refrigerator is big enough to dilute this gas for a limited effect on the rest of the produce in the refrigerator. Ethylene is a plant hormone and does not affect people at all.

So Do You Store Tomatoes In High Or Low Humidity?

That said, so what should you store in low humidity open window drawer?  Fruits and vegetables that producEthylenene should be stored there.  These include apples, tomatoes, avocadoes, citrus fruit, kiwi fruit, blueberries, green onions, melons, okra, peaches, mushrooms, nectarines, plums, grapes, and pears.

What about the high humidity closed window drawer?  In this drawer, you should store fruits and vegetables that are sensitive to the effects of ethylene.  They include – zucchini, carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, asparagus, cucumbers, leafy greens, green beans, lettuce, peppers, peas, spinach, and summer squash.

The humidity settings on both of these drawers work best when the drawers are 2/3 full.  Ensure that you do not stock up these drawers too full.

Now to answer the question, should you store tomatoes in high or low humidity.  If you have to keep them in the refrigerator, store them in low humidity with an open window.  However, the best way to store them is out at the counter.

The Best Way To Store Your Produce 

It is best to store your produce in the packaging you bought them in.  If you need to change, loosely wrap it in paper or perforated plastic bags.  Allow your produce to breathe!

This allows the ethylene gas to escape out, keeping away any extra moisture from getting trapped inside.  Extra moisture is a breeding ground for bacteria and can make your produce go bad fast.

LUXEAR Fresh Produce Vegetable Fruit Storage Containers 3Piece Set, BPA-free

There are plastic vented containers that you can buy to help you store your produce in a better condition. They help keep your fruits and vegetables in a healthy state, away from any danger of rot.  They have a tray that collects the water sitting in a puddle of water, and the lid is invented to let thEthylenene out.  These two qualities keep your produce fresh.

Is Everything Else Stored In The Refrigerator?

Please note, not everything belongs in the refrigerator!  Some fruits and veggies will do best when left on the counter.  And the best thing is the more you see them, the much you are bound to eat them.

Bananas, tomatoes are some of the food that should never go into the refrigerator.  The refrigeration temperatures keep bananas from getting any riper and sweeter.  Tomatoes will get a mealy texture and lose their natural flavor when refrigerated.  Keeping your tomatoes out of the compressed humidity helps them last longer.

Citrus fruits can also be stored at room temperature on the counter for 7-10 days. If they are refrigerated, they pick up some odors from the refrigerator.

Melons, summer squash, cucumber, eggplant, and zucchini all do better on the counter at room temperature. Once melons ripen, consume them within 7 days. The vegetables can only last a couple of days on the counter, so use them as soon.

Is Everything Else Stored In The Refrigerator

Some fruits and vegetables even ripen better if you leave them on the counter. If you are not ready to eat them when they get ripe, you can now put them in the refrigerator to extend a few days. Fruits like avocados, apples, kiwi, peaches, nectarines, pears, and plums all fall into this category.

Once you cut your fruit and vegetables, all the remaining pieces should be refrigerated and used within 2 to 4 days.


What is the best way to store tomatoes?

The best way to store tomatoes is in a cool, dark place. Tomatoes are sensitive to light and heat. So what you should do is store them in an open window drawer that has low humidity.

However, the answer to this question depends on your needs and goals. If you just want to store tomatoes for a few days, there are several ways that can work. I have found the easiest way is to simply put them in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. This will keep them safe and preserve their flavor. If you want to store tomatoes for longer periods of time, then you will need to use something different.

Generally speaking, a refrigerator is not a very good place for storing tomatoes. They will shrivel and lose flavor if left at room temperature.

The first thing I do with any produce is cut it into slices.

Then I place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. I then cover the whole thing with a plastic wrap and put it in the fridge. This helps keep the produce from drying out and keeps it fresh for longer.

How does the ripening process work?

When the tomato is ripe it releases a chemical into the pod. This chemical causes the pod to ripen. It also allows the fruit to be eaten. This process is called “ripening” or “de-greening.” The skin of the tomato is made up of two layers, the exocarp and the endocarp. The exocarp is the outermost layer of the fruit. The endocarp is the innermost layer. The exocarp is what you see when you pick up the tomato. It is the part that has been cut off from the stem. The endocarp is the part that is left on the stem. It is the part that is used in canning. It is important to note that both layers are edible.

This is the best way I've found to keep my tomatoes from turning green. The idea is to keep them in the refrigerator. As long as they are kept cool and out of direct sunlight, they should remain fresh for a week or two.

What’s a good alternative to canning them?

If you don't want to can them, your best bet is to freeze them.

You'll want to let them thaw out first, then place them in the fridge. This should keep them from getting moldy.

Conclusion – Tomatoes In High Or Low Humidity?

It is essential to learn the nitty-gritty of every sector of life, and learning about high or low humidity for veggies is part of our daily life.  The last thing we want is for you to spend all the money shopping only to lose half of the stuff you bought cos you stored them in the wrong place.

Remember always to keep your refrigerator clean and well-stocked for that late dinner when you are running late from work.

Besides, appreciate your counter and pantry where you also store other types of foods.  Keep your potatoes in the pantry in a cool, dry place away from moisture.