Storing potatoes in the fridge is not always a good idea. Here you can find out why potatoes should be kept refrigerated, and under what circumstances.

It’s important to store food correctly to avoid wastage and save money and natural resources. It’s not easy, especially for delicate foods like potatoes. However, by following a few basic tips, you can make potatoes stay fresher longer. The first question to ask is whether potatoes should be placed in the fridge or not.

Potatoes in the fridge?

The question of whether potatoes can be placed in the fridge has its origins in the fact that potatoes are sensitive to temperature variations. If the temperature is too low, as is the case in the fridge, potatoes can transform starch into sugar, which has a negative influence on their taste and consistency. This process can make potatoes sweeter and brown more quickly when cooked. That’s why raw potatoes don’t lend themselves well to freezing.

But it’s not just taste and texture that suffer when potatoes are stored in the fridge. The high sugar content of potatoes combines with the amino acid asparagine when pan-fried, baked or fried. The result is acrylamide. According to the US National Cancer Institute, some studies indicate a link between this substance and an increased risk of cancer. However, the exact links are not yet clear. Even so, it’s also for this reason that it’s recommended not to store potatoes in the refrigerator.

There are exceptions, however. If you’ve already cooked potatoes, or used them in a dish that needs to be kept cool, you can keep them in the fridge. In this case, you should store the potatoes in an airtight container and eat them within two or three days.

Tips for storing potatoes

It’s best not to put potatoes in the fridge when they’re raw. To store potatoes optimally, you should consider the following aspects:

  1. Store cool, but not too cold: potatoes like cool, but not too cold. Ideally, they should be stored at between seven and ten degrees Celsius. A cool, dark cellar or pantry is ideal.
  2. Dry environment: potatoes like it dry. Moisture can lead to mould formation. So keep potatoes in a dry place and avoid storing them in plastic bags, which can trap moisture.
  3. Air circulation: potatoes need air circulation to stay fresh. For this, use a basket or paper bag rather than a closed plastic bag.
  4. Away from light: potatoes need to be protected from light, which can cause them to turn green. Green flesh contains solanine, a toxic substance that should be avoided wherever possible. So make sure that the room in which the potatoes are stored is exposed to as little sunlight as possible. You should also avoid all other light. If this isn’t possible, you can also cover the potatoes with a cotton cloth, or store them in a dark box with a lid.