How Long Do Pineapples Last and How To Tell If Yours Has Gone Bad?

You bought a pineapple or two, and you’re wondering how many days you can store them before they spoil. How long do pineapples last?

Or maybe yours sits in storage for a couple of days already, and you’re wondering how to tell if yours is bad.

Sounds familiar?

If so, this article is for you. In it, we talk about:

  • storing pineapples (and if freezing them is a good idea)
  • shelf life of a pineapple depending on where you store it
  • signs that your pineapple is spoiled

Let’s dig in.

Pineapple in hand

How to Store Pineapples

To make sure your pineapples last as long as they can, let’s begin with picking up the right ones.

Start by checking if it’s free from soft spots and bruises. Next, take a look at the leaves. They should be green and fresh, not losing color and drying out.

Info

Sometimes pineapples are sold without the top, and that’s quite normal. The growers often cut out the crown right after harvesting so they can plant it for the next batch to grow.

While pineapples are most often sold in the not-refrigerated section of the store, room temperature isn’t ideal for them.

You should store pineapples in the pantry or on the countertop only if you plan on consuming them within a day or so. Extended storage in such conditions will result in quality degradation, and possibly in rot setting in after a few more days.

As you probably know, the fridge is where you should keep the pineapple. You can put it in the crisper drawer in the plastic bag you brought it in, but make sure the fruit can breathe.

Warning

Despite its looks, a pineapple is easily bruised, so don’t put anything on top of it.

Trimmed pineapple
Trimmed pineapple

When it comes to pineapple slices and chunks, the story is quite similar.

You should put the cut pineapples in an airtight container or a freezer bag, and then in the fridge. If you’re using the bag, squeeze as much air out of it as possible. Again, make sure the flesh stays untouched in storage.

If fridge space comes at a premium, you can use a rigid airtight container so you can put other food items on top of it. Or, if you need a few days of extra storage time, you can cover the slices and chunks in simple syrup.

For canned pineapple, store it the same way you keep other canned foods. That means you should keep it in a cool and dark cupboard, possibly in the pantry or in the kitchen. That’s about it.

Cut up pineapple in a container
Cut up pineapple in a container

Can You Freeze Pineapple?

If you want to store pineapples for the long term, freezing is the way to go.

Prep the pineapples by peeling and cutting them into desired pieces. Then transfer them to airtight containers or freezer bags.

Tip

If you want to be able to easily thaw only a few pieces instead of the whole container or bag, pre-freeze the pieces first.

Finally, add a label with name and date if you like.

When it comes to thawing, the fridge is the best choice.

Cut up pineapple
Cut up pineapple

How Long Do Pineapples Last

A whole pineapple should retain quality for 1 to 2 days at room temperature, or 4 to 5 days in the fridge. And it should stay okay-to-eat-but-not-that-great for at least a couple more days.

Cut pineapple keeps for 3 to 4 days in the fridge. Going the extra mile and submerging it in simple syrup doubles that period.

Pineapple small pieces
Pineapple small pieces

Canned pineapple comes with a best-by date on the label. And just like other canned foods, the canned pineapple slices or pieces can easily last months past that date.

If you need to store the pineapple for longer, freezing is the way to go.

 PantryFridge
Whole pineapple1 – 2 days4 – 5 days
Pineapple chunks or slices 3 – 4 days
Canned pineappleBest-by + 3 – 6 months 

Please note the periods above are only estimates.

Pineapple: old leaves
Pineapple: old and drying leaves

How To Tell If a Pineapple Has Gone Bad?

Your pineapple is probably spoiled if:

  • Top leaves have lost color or dried out. When that process starts, it’s now or never when it comes to consuming the fruit.
  • It’s heavily bruised or has lots of soft spots. If the damaged area isn’t that big, you can usually cut it off, and use the rest of the fruit.
  • The bottom is moldy, wet, or mushy. If it just started to grow mold, you should cut up the fruit immediately.
  • The fruit smells off. If the fruit smells fermented instead of fresh and fruity, it’s done for.
Warning

If the fruit already has some quality issues, the deterioration process accelerates, and waiting until tomorrow isn’t a good idea if you want to use the fruit.

Moldy bottom of a pineapple
Moldy pineapple bottom, not all is lost yet
Moldy pineapple beneath skin
Mold beneath pineapple’s skin
Brown pineapple piece
Pineapple piece that’s browned, don’t eat that

If the fruit looks and smells okay, cut it up and see how the flesh is doing. If there aren’t any noticeable changes, the fruit should be okay to eat.

When it comes to canned pineapple, as long as the tin isn’t leaky, bludged, or rusty, the contents of the can should be just fine.