Food Waste how to keep herbs fresh

Published on February 12th, 2013 | by Becky Striepe

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How to Keep Herbs Fresh: A Quick Kitchen Tip!

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how to keep herbs fresh

The CSA I belong to is great about delivering fresh herbs, but those suckers seem to get wilty or mushy so fast in the crisper! Luckily, a friend hipped me to this simple way to keep herbs fresh.

Really, this is so easy it’s kind of silly. Are you ready?

When you get home with that beautiful bunch of fresh herbs, take off the rubber band, and put them in a glass of water, just like you would cut flowers. You want just enough water to cover the stems without submerging the leaves. If the leaves go down really low, pull those off, because they’ll get gross and mushy in the water anyway. Make sure to change the water every couple of days, and this method should keep your herbs fresh for up to a week!

Gone are the days of wasting those beautiful herb bouquets because I forgot about them or because I waited too long to pull them out of the fridge!

I’ve tried this with cilantro, parsley, basil, and dill, and it works great! Hardy herbs like rosemary and oregano don’t really need this extra TLC, but for delicate fresh herbs, you can really extend their life this way. Plus, when they’re sitting out on display, you’re more likely to remember you have them!

Even cooler? If you keep up with changing the water, after a while you’ll sometimes start to see little roots pop out of the bottoms of your herbs. When the roots start showing, you can actually plant them in a pot or your garden and grow your own herbs without spending $3-$5 at the garden store. Pretty cool, right?

If you know you won’t be using those fresh herbs for a long time, you’re better off drying them. They’ll last for months dried, and you can use them whenever you’re ready. Need some herb-drying help? Check out how to dry herbs right here!

Do you have any tips on how to preserve herbs? I’d love to hear your favorite methods in the comments!

photo by Becky Striepe

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About the Author

My name is Becky Striepe (rhymes with “sleepy”), and I am a crafts and food writer from Atlanta, Georgia with a passion for making our planet a healthier, happier, and more compassionate place to live. My mission is to make vegan food and crafts accessible to everyone!. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .



  • http://beanafoodie.com/blog Maria Tadic

    This is such a great tip. I always thought keeping them in a damp towel in the fridge was the best…even though they died within a few days. I will definitely be trying this!

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