Can strawberries ripen after being picked? (+7 Ways to use)

In this article, we will answer the question “Can strawberries ripen after being picked?”, and how to choose the best strawberries along with the ways to use unripe strawberries.

Can strawberries ripen after being picked?

No, strawberries will not ripen after being picked. So, it is important that you buy fully mature strawberries. Strawberries belong to the genus Fragaria and are well known for their sweet taste, distinctive aroma, plumpy texture, and red color that particularly enhances the visual appeal of the fruit.

Strawberries extract or essence is used as a flavoring agent. Fresh strawberries are widely used to make ice-creams, jams, cocktails, juice, and shakes. Read on if you want to know how to shop for the best strawberries and what to do if you bought unripe strawberries.

How to buy the best strawberries?

  1. Look for strawberries with a plumpy and firm texture. Avoid strawberries with a mushy texture or bruised skin. Plumpy strawberries will be more juicy and flavorful.
  2. Make sure that the stem and leaves are intact and the leaves are not withered. They should have a fresh green color.
  3. A strawberry with a bright red or ruby red color will have more flavor than a strawberry that is greenish or whitish at the tips. Green or white tips indicate under ripeness. Do not buy such strawberries because they won’t ripen in storage.
  4. Look for the signs of mold. If there are green spots or patches on the strawberry, do not buy as it indicates fungal contamination.
  5. Seasonal berries taste better because they do not have to go through the long storage durations that strips them of their fresh flavor.
  6. This is true that the smaller berries are juicier, sweeter, and have a more concentrated flavor. Larger strawberries taste bland.
  7. Strawberries are very fragrant. Look for the strawberries with a pleasant fruity smell.

What to do with unripe strawberries?

Do not worry if you bought unripe strawberries. There are plenty of ways to turn them into something delicious.

Strawberry syrup

Unripe strawberries taste acidic. Add sugar and strawberries in a saucepan and add a splash of water. Cook until smooth and pour over pancakes or make strawberry flavored ice cream.

Strawberry popsicles

Strawberries combined with cream cheese and greek yogurt make the perfect sweet and savory treat that is an utter delight to anyone who does not like too much sugary taste in desserts.

Roasted strawberries

Roast the unripe strawberries to convert the tang into a sweet flavor. It is an excellent addition to your salad bowls or margaritas.


Make strawberry martini using vodka and citrus juice. Strawberry lemonade with or without vodka is a very refreshing summer drink. Pour that homemade strawberry syrup in a glass and add gin and tonic for a delicious cocktail. Add lemon juice for a tangy hint.

Make soups

Use the tart strawberries instead of tomatoes to make soup for your gazpacho?. 

Make smoothie

Add unripe strawberries to your smoothies for a citrus boost. If it tastes too acidic, balance it with sugar or another sweet fruit like ripe bananas.

Pickle ‘em

Pickle your unripe strawberries in vinegar water and add to your salad bowls, cocktails, tacos, and sandwiches.

Other FAQs about Strawberries which you may be interested in.

Do strawberries ripen after picking?

How to protect strawberries from slugs?

What are climacteric and non-climacteric fruits?

Climacteric fruits

Climacteric is the final stage of fruit maturation and is marked by the release of ethylene gas and an increased rate of cellular respiration. Fruits that exhibit this phenomenon after harvesting is called climacteric fruits and include bananas, tomatoes, dates, mango, papaya, apricot, kiwi, etc.

Non-climacteric fruits

Non-climacteric fruits do not ripen off the vine and must be harvested at full maturity. In these fruits, hormones like auxin, abscisic acid(ABA), gibberellins, etc are responsible for fruit maturation as a result of various molecular processes. These fruits include berries including strawberries, citrus fruits, pineapple, grapes, and pomegranate, etc.

Health benefits of strawberries

  • Strawberries are low in carbs, therefore, are the perfect snack for people who want to lose weight. Strawberries have a low GI value and are safe to use for diabetic patients.
  • 100 grams of strawberries will provide 2 grams of dietary fiber that aids digestion and weight loss.
  • Strawberry is rich in Vitamin C and vitamin B9. vitamin C is a powerful anti-oxidant while folate, also known as vitamin B9, is crucial during pregnancy.
  • Strawberries also provide manganese and potassium that help balance body fluids.
  • Other antioxidants like anthocyanin and ellagitannins play an important role to maintain heart health by regulating blood pressure and blood sugar. They also cancer due to their anti-inflammatory properties


In this article, we answered the question “Can strawberries ripen after being picked?”, and how to choose the best strawberries along with the ways to use unripe strawberries.