How To Store Asparagus To Keep It Fresh?

If you’ve had a bumper crop of asparagus, eaten it for breakfast lunch and dinner every day for far too long, and you want to know how to store asparagus, this post is for you!

Asparagus can be a little trickier than, say, green beans to store for a long time – but there are ways to store asparagus that can even improve its flavor and health benefits.

How To Keep Asparagus Fresh Longer?

how to keep asparagus fresh longer

You can simply place your asparagus in the fridge, and know that it will last for 3-5 days… However, there is a little trick that can make your asparagus last for about 10 days!

  1. Wash the asparagus and trim about an inch off the end of the stems.
  2. Fill a jar with about an inch of water.
  3. Place the asparagus spears in the jar, cut side down.
  4. Cover the tips loosely with a plastic bag.
  5. Store the jar in the fridge, and enjoy fresh, crunchy asparagus for up to 10 days!

How To Keep Asparagus In The Fridge?

how to keep asparagus fresh in the fridge

Asparagus will happily sit in your fridge, enjoying the cool temperatures, for a few days, before it starts to go into decline.

If you have one of those fridges that is excessively cold in certain places, like the back, avoid storing your asparagus there. If it gets too cold its cells will start to die, leading to nasty, mushy asparagus.

You should leave the band securing the spears together on the spears for as long as possible, to keep the bunch together.

Wrapping your asparagus in kitchen paper whilst in the fridge will also help it to keep longer.

Dampen the bottom of the kitchen paper that you wrap the asparagus in, for even better results!

Store in in the front of the fridge, or in the salad drawer, for the best way to store asparagus spears.

Following the above method and using a jar of water to store your asparagus is the best way to ensure your asparagus stays fresh for the longest time.

Here is a little video showing you how to do it, if you like a visual instruction:

How Long Does Asparagus Last In The Fridge?

Asparagus can last 3-5 days in the fridge, before they become bendy and unpalatable. You can still eat them once they have reached this state, they just won’t have the same delicious crunch.

Slightly wilted asparagus can be used in pasta dishes, soups and stir fries, so at least your crop won’t be wasted if it gets forgotten in the bottom of the salad drawer!

How To Freeze Fresh Asparagus Without Blanching?

Blanching is generally the best way to start freezing fresh vegetables – the very quick “cooking” process maintains the color and texture of the vegetable when you come to unfreeze it.

Asparagus contains a lot of water, so freezing it without blanching can lead the final unfrozen result to be a bit of a soggy mess! However, there is a way to do this to avoid the unpalatable results.

Instead of blanching, you can steam your asparagus briefly to preserve the taste and texture of your asparagus. You can’t salt the asparagus as you would with blanching, so bear this in mind when you unfreeze it and use it in your recipe.

  • Set a steaming basket or a colander over a pan of boiling water.
  • Steam the asparagus for 2-3 minutes, then place it into a bowl of iced water.
  • Lay the spears out on a baking tray, not touching each other, and place in the freezer for 2-3 hours.
  • Remove from the freezer and pile the asparagus into a zip lock bag, removing all the air as you do so.

Your asparagus will last for up to a year when frozen using this method!

Have a look at this video if you’d like to see asparagus being frozen, unblanched, in action:

How To Tell If Asparagus Is Bad?

Luckily, working out if your asparagus has gone over is a relatively easy thing to do. The tips will start to show signs of stress before the rest of the stem, so it is this area that you need to look at first.

When asparagus is starting to “go over” you will notice the tips turning a very dark green color, and they will be mushy if you touch them.

Before they become completely inedible, the stems may also start to dry out and wither – as long as the tips are still green and firm you can just trim off the dried out ends and still use the rest of the spear.

If you want, you can still use the parts of your asparagus that are still firm and good – snip off the discolored, dried or mushy parts, and just use the rest. You should still end up with that delicious asparagus taste.

What Happens If You Eat Bad Asparagus?

Eating bad asparagus, as eating any bad vegetable, is not inherently dangerous – but it is not tasty, and definitely not recommended!

You won’t notice any awful symptoms if you eat bad asparagus, but your dish definitely won’t be as tasty, and you may notice some uncomfortable digestive symptoms such as gas or an upset tummy.

If your asparagus spears have signs of mold or rot, or they smell bad, then you should definitely put them straight into the compost bin and find something else to cook – consuming mold is very bad for the health.

Final Words

We haven’t yet talked about a very useful way for storing your asparagus – canning it – read more here.

Storing asparagus long term can be a slightly tricky thing, and it won’t last forever, but on the whole it is very worthwhile, and can mean that you enjoy the fruits of your labors for far longer than if you were to just eat it, night after night (and you’re less likely to get bored of it, too!)

If you are looking for more tips about your asparagus farming business, here is our article on how to prepare it for winter months.

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