How long does a cut onion last?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “how long does a cut onion last” with an in-depth analysis of the shelf life of cut onion. Moreover, we are going to discuss the shelf life of raw, whole onion, and cooked onion along with the health implications of eating a bad onion.

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.

How long does a cut onion last?

Cut onions last for about 7 to 10 days when they are stored properly at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit in the fridge. But an important point to keep in mind is to always store the cut onions in an air-tight bag or container as the strong-smelling onion can induce its smell to other food items present in the fridge.

Onion is a low caloric food and with 100 grams of an onion having only 40 calories. When we talk about its nutritional profile, an onion has 9% carbohydrates, 1.7% dietary fiber, and 89% water. Its fat content is so low that 100 grams of onions have just 0.1 grams of fat. Onion is also a good source of many vitamins and minerals including vitamin B6, Folate, Vitamin C, and potassium. It is a nutritious food commodity therefore it should be stored properly to preserve its freshness and quality for a long time.

A cut onion lasts for less than a day if it is kept uncovered at room temperature. Peeled and chopped onions will not only lose their moisture over time but can also become the favorite spot for many bacteria and other microbes to grow upon.

You can also store your cut onions in the freezer to further prolong their shelf life. Cut onions last for about 8 months in the freezer in an air-tight bag or container. Storing cut onions in the freezer prolongs the shelf life of the onions owing to the cold temperature of the freezer that halts the bacterial growth considerably.

How long does raw whole onion last?

Raw unpeeled onions can last for 2 to 3 months easily when kept in a cool, dry, and well-ventilated place. Thus, you can store raw onions o your kitchen counter away from direct sunlight and heat. Moreover, you can also store raw whole onions in a cool and dry corner of your pantry.

Raw whole onions can last for almost 10 to 14 days when kept in the fridge. As the moisture content of the fridge can mess with the quality of onions, therefore refrigeration is not recommended for whole unpeeled onions.

It is worth mentioning that it is not recommended to freeze raw whole onions.

How long does cooked onion last?

Cooked onions last for about 4 days when kept in an air-tight container or plastic zipper bag in the fridge at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Moreover, you can also significantly increase the shelf life of cooked onions to 12 months by keeping them in the freezer.

Tips to store onions properly

  1. Cut or diced onions should be stored in air-tight bags or containers in the refrigerator or they can even be stored in the freezer in plastic freezer bags or air-tight containers for quite long.
  2. You should never leave your cut onions in open for too long as not only they will dry out but can also be laden with bacteria.
  3. Unpeeled raw onions should be stored in a cold, dry, and well-ventilated place. Therefore you can easily store them in your pantry or a spot on your kitchen counter away from direct sunlight and heat. 
  4. It is not advised to store whole raw onions in the fridge as they can readily absorb moisture from the fridge that can change their texture and mouthfeel.

What are the indications and health implications of bad onion?

You can easily tell whether or not the onion has gone bad by looking at its color, texture, and smell.

If you see any mold or dark-colored spots on your raw onion then it is an indication that your onion has gone bad and it is best to get rid of it.

The healthy onions are rather firm so if you feel something soft, squishy, or slimy then it is an indication that your onion has gone bad.

The healthy onion itself has some strong and sharp smell but if you smell something off then it is probably an indication of your onions going bad.

Eating an onion that has gone bad causes many health problems especially food poisoning. Onions can get contaminated with Salmonella that can cause serious health implications and gastrointestinal disorders like diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, and fever. 

Moreover, there can be present Lysteria Monocytogens in the onion that has gone bad which can cause listeriosis if consumed by vulnerable populations like children, the elderly, pregnant ladies, and immunocompromised people. 

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question “how long does a cut onion last” with an in-depth analysis of the shelf life of cut onion. Moreover, we discussed the shelf life of raw, whole onion, and cooked onion along with the health implications of eating a bad onion.

Citations

https://www.allrecipes.com/article/how-to-store-onions/

https://www.eatthis.com/how-to-store-onions/

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Mahnoor Asghar is a Clinical Nutritionist with a bachelor's degree in Nutrition and Dietetics. She is compassionate and dedicated to playing her part in the well-being of the masses. She wants to play a fruitful role in creating nutrition and health-related awareness among the general public. Additionally, she has a keen eye for detail and loves to create content related to food, nutrition, health, and wellness.

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