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Tomato sauce

Tomato sauce
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Your pantry may be stocked with tomato sauce you bought the last time it was a sale, but it always should go in the fridge after you open it. “In the old days, a lot of us used to keep tomato sauce in the pantry,” Lydia Buchtmann, spokeswoman for the Food Safety Information Council, told HuffPost Australia. “But since then these products have gotten a lot healthier, so they’ve got less unhealthy preservatives in them like salt.”

Here are 10 more food storage guidelines you didn’t know.

Dijon mustard

Dijon mustard
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Although your favourite sausage condiment won’t spoil if it’s kept in the pantry, keeping it in the fridge removes any risk of your Dijon losing the flavour you love. Plus, it’ll last longer if it’s refrigerated.

Bananas

Bananas
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Surprised? You may be used to keeping your bananas in prime pantry real estate, but if you keep them there, they just keep ripening. When they’re ready to eat, put them in the fridge, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says. If the peels turn brown, they’ll still be good to eat. Food storage is one of the factors as to why professional chefs never order these foods at restaurants.

Salami

Salami
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You already know to keep raw meat like chicken and beef in the fridge (or the freezer if you’re not using it right away), and the same applies for cured meat like salami. In a 2006 study, researchers found that 23 per cent of the tested 1020 dry Italian salami contained the foodborne pathogen Listeria monocytogenes.

Pure maple syrup

Pure maple syrup
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If you love syrup, why would you eat anything other than the 100 per cent pure maple stuff? However, unlike syrup that’s only maple-flavoured, this pure kind must be kept in the refrigerator to prevent mould. Store it in the freezer (don’t worry, it won’t freeze solid), and it’ll keep indefinitely.

Chocolate syrup

Chocolate syrup
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Maple isn’t the only kind of decadent topping that needs to be kept in the fridge. Left in the pantry, the flavour of your chocolate syrup will go bad. One notable exception is Nesquik syrup; because it doesn’t contain high fructose corn syrup, refrigerating it will make it crystalised. The pantry isn’t the only place you’re mistakenly storing foods.

 

Corn on the cob

Corn on the cob
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Either cook up this summertime staple right away, or toss it in the fridge. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, an ear of corn can lose 50 per cent of its sugar if left at room temperature. If you opt to refrigerate, eat it within two days for the best taste.

Don’t miss these 20 food facts that will change how you eat.

Whole-grain flour

Whole-grain flour
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Any variety of whole-grain flour is healthier than your average all-purpose white flour. That’s because these flours contain some or all of the bran and germ from the original wheat, meaning they use the whole grain. (Get it?) However, the oils in the bran and germ can spoil quickly. Storing whole-grain flour in the freezer significantly slows down the spoiling process, The Kitchn reports, and increases their shelf life.

Unsalted butter

Unsalted butter
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You may be one of the thousands of households that leaves their butter on the counter (or in the pantry) so it gets soft and spreads easily. While this hack is technically safe, health experts told TODAY that only salted butter should be left out of the fridge, since the salt can keep bacteria away. Additionally, you should store it in an airtight container and only leave it out for two weeks, max. Knowing where to store food is only half the battle. You still need to check it before you dig in.

 

Jam

Jam
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Some people prefer room temperature jams, but at the end of the day, wouldn’t you rather eat something that couldn’t potentially make you sick? Almost all jams say, “Refrigerate after opening” on the jar, so just follow the instructions. Some manufacturers recommend that any opened fruit spreads left unrefrigerated for 48 hours should not be used.

Here are 13 foods you should never eat past the expiration date.

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