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25 things you don't actually need to keep in the fridge

Make some room in your fridge by storing these room-temperature-happy items in the pantry.

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There is probably a bunch of things in your fridge that doesn't need to be there. Removing these items from your fridge can free up space and improve the taste and quality of items that should be stored at room temperature.

Take a look at this list and then go rummage through your fridge.

  1. Hot sauce stays fresh up to 3 years without refrigeration, even after opening it.
  2. Potatoes should be stored in paper bags in cool, dry pantries. Putting them in the fridge can make them taste funny and rot faster.
  3. Onions do best in dry, ventilated areas. Keep them away from potatoes, though. These tubers can make onions rot faster.
  4. Like onions, garlic is just fine in a dry, ventilated area of the pantry.
  5. Basil absorbs fridge smells, so it is best to keep your fresh basil in a cup or vase of water on the counter much like fresh cut flowers. You can also do this with any other fresh herbs.
  6. Your avocado won't ripen? That's because it's in the fridge. Putting an unripe avocado on the counter will make it ripen much faster. To really speed up the process, put it in a bag with a banana or apple.
  7. Putting berries in the fridge can make them rot much faster due to moisture. They'll be fine in a bowl or basket on the counter.
  8. Bread is best when kept at room temperature in a sealed plastic bag. Storing bread in the fridge speeds up the dehydration process and makes it go stale faster.
  9. You might have heard that keeping batteries in the fridge can make them last longer. This is false. The cold can actually be bad for them.
  10. Storing tomatoes in the fridge can alter their flavor and make them rot faster. Keeping them on the counter in a bowl is your best bet.
  11. Keep coffee out of the fridge and in a dry, air-tight container in the cupboard.
  12. Most squash, especially those with thicker skin, do well for up to a couple months in the pantry.
  13. Honey is the only food that doesn't spoil and it doesn't need to be refrigerated.
  14. Most cakes don't need refrigeration. If it's unfrosted or has a buttercream or ganache frosting, it's fine to store it in an airtight container for around three days.
  15. Uncut melons do best on the counter or in a dry pantry.
  16. Bananas that are unripe should be hung on a banana hook on the counter to ripen. Otherwise, ripe bananas can be stored in the fridge or freezer to prevent further ripening.
  17. Ketchup and mustard can be kept in the cabinet for around a month without refrigeration because they contain acids that inhibit bacteria growth.
  18. Peanut butter doesn't need to be refrigerated and can be kept in the cabinet for months, unless it's organic.
  19. Cooking oils can be kept in the pantry, with the exception of nut oils.
  20. Apples, peaches, nectarines and pears can be kept in a basket in your pantry and will last around a week.
  21. Rice only needs to be kept in the fridge if it's cooked. Dry rice can be stored in canisters or plastic bags in your pantry for years. If it's stored in an air-tight container, white rice can last 8 to 10 years. Brown rice can last 1 to 2 years.
  22. Like rice, dried beans don't need to be refrigerated. In fact, the moisture found in a refrigerator can make beans grow sprouts.
  23. Grandmas and some beauty blogs swear by storing your makeup in the fridge, but makeup was made to be be stored at room temperature. Cold temperatures may destabilize chemical compositions and the humidity can make powders clump together.
  24. Peppers, both spicy and mild, don't need to go in the fridge. They taste much better when stored open-air in a basket on your counter.
  25. Eggplants are hardy enough to keep out on the counter at room temperature.