In this article, we will answer the question “When do carrots go bad?”, and how to store carrots?
When do carrots go bad?
- If the carrots develop large mushy and moldy areas, they have spoiled. This goes for both cooked and raw carrots.
- If the carrots develop a slimy film and smell off, they should be discarded.
- If the carrots have been stored for too long, they become limpy. While there are a variety of ways these carrots can be used, you can throw them for quality reasons.
How to store carrots?
- If you bought the carrots from the farmer’s market, clean the dirt off them and trim the greens. Store the greens If you want to use them.
- Do not store the carrots near the fruits and vegetables that produce large amounts of ethylene like apples, bananas, tomatoes, etc.
- If the carrots are to be consumed within a few days, they can be kept in the pantry or kitchen cabinet. The rule of thumb is to store them somewhere dry, cool, and dark.
- If the carrots are to be kept for more than 4-5 days, opt for the fridge.
- Put the carrots in a freezer bag. Keep the bag open from the top and place it in the vegetable drawer section of the fridge. For extra protection, you can wrap the carrots in a damp paper towel before storing them in the freezer bag.
- If you stored the carrots in a bowl of water, make sure you change the water daily or when it gets cloudy.
- Peeled and sliced carrots and cooked carrots should be kept in an air-tight container in the fridge.
Can you freeze carrots?
It is not recommended to freeze raw carrots. The texture will suffer great loss after thawing. The correct way to freeze the carrots is to first blanch and cook them before storing them.
Carrots can be blanched by the following method.
- Wash and peel the carrots. Cut them into desired shapes and sizes.
- In a pot, bring water to a rolling boil. Add the carrots and blanch for the recommended time.
- Remove the carrots from the water and pat them dry with paper towels once they are cool.
- If you want each piece of carrots to be separate from the other. You can flash freeze after blanching.
- Divide the carrots into meal-sized portions and put them into the freezer bags. Label the bag and squeeze out the air from it. Chuck it into the freezer.
The shelf-life of carrots
The following table shows an estimated shelf-life of carrots under different storage conditions.
|In the pantry||In the fridge||In the freezer|
|Raw whole||3-5 days||4-5 weeks||6-9 months|
|Sliced(kept in water)||Unsafe||6-8 weeks||Not recommended|
|Cooked||Unsafe||1 week||6-9 months|
|Baby carrots||3-5 days||3-4 weeks||6-9 months|
|Dehydrated||Up to one year||Unsafe||Not recommended|
What to do with floppy carrots?
If the carrots have gone floppy due to prolonged storage, there is a way they can be saved. Carrots contain 80-95% water. They become floppy because of the loss of water.
To replenish their water content, place the floppy carrots in cold water for about 5 hours before using. After 5 hours, the carrots will become firm but they will lose most of their water-soluble vitamins becoming less nutritious.
Health benefits of carrots
Full of nutrients
Carrots are rich in vitamins like Biotin or Vitamin H, Vitamin K1, and Vitamin B6. It is also a good source of Potassium. Other plant compounds like Lutein, lycopene, anthocyanins, alpha carotenes, and polyacetylenes are also present in ample amounts. Some of these plant compounds have powerful antioxidant properties.
The rich content of carotenoids in carrots helps in reducing the risk of prostate, colon, and stomach, and breast cancer.
Lowers blood cholesterol
The high amount of soluble fiber present in carrots helps in lowering blood cholesterol which in turn reduces the risk of many heart diseases.
Helps in weight loss
100g portion of carrots provides 41 calories and 2.8g of fiber. The fiber keeps you full for longer and regulates hunger patterns. Therefore, carrots are a great addition to your diet if you are looking out for weight gain.
Carrots are rich in vitamin A and carotenoids. They reduce the risk of night blindness which is caused by the deficiency of Vitamin A. the carotenoids in carrots reduce the risk of macular degeneration.
In this article, we answered the question “When do carrots go bad?”, and how to store carrots?