What are the 30 foods that should not be refrigerated?

In this article, we will answer the question “What are the 30 foods that should not be refrigerated?”

What are the 30 foods that should not be refrigerated?


Whole melons like watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew are better off stored on the counter. Once cut, wrap the exposed flesh of the melon with cling film and refrigerate for up to 3 days. 


To prevent the tomatoes from going mealy, store them on the counter in a well-ventilated environment for no more than 2 days.


Apples can last for up to a week in a cool, and dry place, away from direct heat, without refrigeration. 


Whole avocados should always be kept at room temperature to preserve their creamy texture. Once cut, wrap the exposed flesh with cling film and refrigerate.


Store the bananas in a cool and well-ventilated place or on the counter for optimal freshness or freeze for extended shelf life. 


To preserve the juiciness and tangy flavor of oranges, store them on the counter in a well-ventilated space.


If the berries are not to be consumed within 12 hours of purchase, refrigerate or freeze them. Prolonged refrigeration makes the berries mushy and reduces their natural sweetness. 

Peaches and apricots 

Room temperature storage allows the stone fruits to ripen naturally and become sweeter. When the ripening is completed, stone fruits can be refrigerated for up to 5 days to avoid rot.


Store the onions are best stored in a cool, dark, dry, and well-ventilated place to preserve their crispy texture and prevent mold growth. Once cut, onions should be refrigerated for 7-10 days.


As long as the peels are intact, garlic cloves can sit on the counter for up to 10 days without going bad.


Squashes such as Butternut squash, acorn squash, spaghetti squash, and pumpkins can be stored on the counter for about a month or even longer.


Refrigeration tends to reduce the starch content of the potatoes due to which they lose their desirable texture and flavor. For optimal freshness, potatoes should be kept in a cool and dry place, away from sunlight and direct sources of heat.


Bread is best stored on the counter. Refrigeration does prevent the bread from becoming moldy but it also speeds up the staling process. If the outside temperature is cool and the bread will be consumed within the best-by date printed on its package, it is better off kept on the counter.

Hot sauce 

Hot sauce contains a rich amount of vinegar that itself acts as a preservative. Even after opening the hot sauce bottle, it can be kept safely on the counter. Moreover, refrigeration tends to reduce the hotness of the hot sauce.


The cold and dry environment of the fridge tends to make the herbs wilt faster. The best way to store fresh herbs and preserve their crispness is by placing them in a glass jar filled with water.


Spices are best stored in a cool and dry environment. Refrigeration is unnecessary for spices. Moreover, the humidity inside a refrigerator may lead to the lumping of spices. 


Coffee is best stored in an air-tight container in the pantry. The humid environment of the fridge destroys the flavor of the coffee due to condensation. 


Due to a rich amount of sugars, honey has a pretty long shelf-life. What mostly happens is that honey substantially loses its quality before ever going bad. 

The refrigeration environment promotes crystallization in honey and ruins its natural texture and flavor. For optimal freshness, store honey on the counter.


Although nuts do not go rancid in the fridge, they lose their nutty flavor instead. Moreover, shelled nuts easily pick up undeniable odors during refrigeration. For optimal freshness, store the nuts in a cool, dark, and dry place such as the pantry or a kitchen cupboard. 


Refrigeration hardens the Nutella and reduces its spreadability factor. To make sure the Nutella remains silky and smooth, store it at room temperature.


Store the oil in a dark cupboard or pantry, away from sunlight. Refrigeration solidifies the oil and frequent reheating and refrigerating destroys the oil texture.


Moisture and extreme temperatures spoil pumpkin. Store the pumpkins at room temperature for optimal freshness.

Peanut butter 

Store the peanut butter in the pantry or a dark cupboard to preserve its creaminess and spreadability.


Flour is best stored in an air-tight container inside a dark and cool cupboard. Flour needs to be at room temperature for correct baking.


The vinegar in the ketchup does not hold up well in the fridge. To prevent your ketchup from becoming runny or watery, store it in the pantry.

Soy sauce 

If the soy sauce is used up within 6 months of its opening, it can safely sit on the counter without going bad or losing its flavor.

Canned tuna 

An unopened can of tuna is air-tight and does not need to be refrigerated. Store the unopened cans of tuna in your pantry for optimal freshness.

Cucumbers and pickles 

To preserve the crisp texture of the cucumbers, store them in a cool place instead of the fridge. Vacuum-sealed pickles do not need to be refrigerated. Refrigerating an opened jar of pickles does not impact its shelf-life significantly so it is unnecessary.


To make sure the butter is spreadable, it needs to be stored in a cool pantry instead of the fridge. Butter lasts about 1-2 weeks on the counter.


Cereal tends to absorb moisture and pick up unwanted odors from the fridge. Therefore, it is best kept on the counter.


In this article, we answered the question “What are the 30 foods that should not be refrigerated?”



Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.