This article is all about storing pineapples. Learn how you should store a whole pineapple and what to do after cutting it up.
Bought your first pineapple and not sure if you need to refrigerate it or not? How to store fresh pineapple?
You can store your whole pineapple for 2 to 3 days on the counter or up to a week if you refrigerate it. Once you cut it up, it keeps for about 4 days in an airtight container or freezer bag in the fridge.
That’s the gist of it. Want to learn more?
Here’s what we discuss below:
- storing a whole pineapple – when to refrigerate it and when not to
- storing cut pineapples
- choosing a pineapple in the supermarket
Let’s jump right into it.
How to Store a Whole Pineapple
A whole pineapple keeps for 2 to 3 days at room temperature and even a week if you store it in the fridge. That means if you’re going to eat it soon after buying, you can leave it on the counter.
That’s true, of course, assuming that you bought a nice and fresh pineapple, not one sitting in the produce section for a couple of days already. If it’s the latter, or you aren’t quite sure, refrigerate the fruit immediately, just in case.
(I cover how to pick a fresh pineapple later in the article.)
When it comes to storing a whole pineapple in the fridge, it’s best to choose a relatively warm and quite humid place. That’s because ripe pineapples like humidity and temperatures between 45 and 50°F (or 7-10°C).
As it turns out, the only place that (pretty much) satisfies both conditions is the crisper drawer, and that’s where I recommend storing whole pineapples.
And speaking of the veggie drawer, remember that while a pineapple looks quite sturdy, it’s easily bruised. That means you shouldn’t put any heavy veggies or fruits on top of it.
Next, cutting up the pineapple once you bring it home is an option too.
The main advantage of that approach is you save quite a lot of fridge space by not refrigerating the crown, the skin, and the core. The downside is that the storage time is shortened by a couple of days.
Related: How long does pineapple last?
In other words, if you’re planning to use the pineapple soon, cutting it up before storage is fine.
Now, let’s talk about what you can do with the fruit once it’s cut up.
How to Store Cut Pineapple
You should store cut pineapple in the fridge, either in an airtight container or a resealable bag. Make sure the fruit is sealed tightly when in storage, and use it within 3 to 4 days.
If you’re storing large pineapple slices, quarters, or the whole fruit without its crown, a freezer bag is the best option. Just remember to squeeze out the air before sealing it.
Of course, you can also wrap the fruit with plastic wrap, but using a reusable bag is a much more environment-friendly solution.
If you’ve cut your pineapple into small chunks or diced it, a container is usually the best choice.
If you need your cut up pineapple to last longer than the mentioned 4 days, there are at least two ways to go about that:
- Cover the pineapple chunks in simple syrup and store them in an airtight container. That should double the storage time.
- Freeze the pineapple. Freezing this fruit is simple but somewhat limits how you can use it after thawing. Here’s my Can you freeze pineapple? article if you’re interested in learning more.
And in case you were wondering, all of the above is also true for an open canned pineapple.
How to Buy a Pineapple?
To ensure your pineapple lasts a long time, you should buy a fresh one. If you purchase an old one, its shelf life will be significantly shorter, and you might have to cut out some of the flesh that’s already started to brown, soften, or give off a fermented smell.
For starters, you should know that pineapples are sold ripe. That means you cannot buy an unripe pineapple that will last much longer than a ripe one.
Next, remember that skin color isn’t a good indicator of quality. It naturally varies throughout the year, and some pineapples will be more golden while others will look greener. Both can be perfectly fine quality-wise.
Knowing that, here’s what you should do when buying a pineapple:
- Smell it. The pineapple, especially the bottom, should have a sweet aroma. If there’s no sweetness, or worse, it smells fermented, avoid it.
- Asses the leaves. Green and fresh leaves mean the fruit is fresh. Dry and discolored leaves mean the pineapple is either nearing its shelf life or already not good enough to eat. Some sellers sell their pineapples without the top, so checking the leaves isn’t always possible.
- Look for mold on the bottom. If the bottom is moldy, you only have a few days to eat the pineapple. Assuming that you’re lucky and it’s not already gone bad, of course.
- Check the skin for soft spots. The skin should be firm, without any bruises or damaged areas.
If everything seems to be just fine, that specimen is a good candidate to buy.