How To Ripen Strawberries

Everybody loves fresh strawberries. These delicious berries are renowned for their bright red color and sweet taste. Plus, strawberries are healthy and a superb source of vitamin C.

Yet, unripe strawberries look and taste very different from the strawberries that you usually buy from the supermarket or the fresh fruits you have grown in the garden.

Namely, unripe strawberries tend to have a green color, which contrasts with the bright red hue of ripe strawberries. Not to mention, ripe strawberries tend to taste sweeter.

If your strawberries are unripe, you can easily change this. That is because the ripening process is extremely easy. We’ll guide you through some of the best methods to ripen strawberries quickly.

How To Ripen Picked Strawberries

Once picked, one technically cannot ripen strawberries further. However, you can still ensure that they develop the taste and texture of ripe strawberries.

In a Brown Paper Bag

The paper bag method is incredibly easy. All you have to do is place the strawberries in a paper or plastic bag. A paper bag is preferable due to its environmental impact. Not to mention, a paper bag is more effective at ensuring air circulation.

Ensure that the strawberries are sealed in the paper bag. Strawberries release ethylene gas as they grow. This way, the ethylene gas will be trapped within the paper bag, thus resulting in ripe fruits.

With A Ripe Banana

If you have some ripe bananas, this is the perfect way of using them. In this case, the riper the better. In a bag, place your unripe strawberries and the ripe bananas. Seal the bag and leave it in a warm location, ideally approximately 75°F.

After a while, the bananas will have ripened the strawberries. Simply remove the ripe fruits from the bag and consume your sensational strawberries.

At Room Temperature

This third method is also super simple. First, remove the strawberry stems. Then place the strawberries in a bowl of water. Leave them at room temperature, preferably overnight.

Check the strawberries to see if they have become ripe yet. If not, cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Transfer the bowl to a dark location, such as a pantry, for two days. This should be enough to ripen strawberries.

After this time has passed, drain the excess liquid. Then, eat your succulent fresh strawberries!

How To Ripen Strawberries

How To Ripen Unpicked Strawberries

In many ways, ripening strawberries that are still unpicked is much simpler than already-picked strawberries. This is because the strawberry plants are still undergoing the ripening process.

Before harvesting strawberries, you can use these simple methods to speed up the ripening process:

Ensure your strawberry plants are getting enough water. Strawberries require lots of water to become fully ripe. Even during rainy seasons, you should water your strawberry plants.

Make sure your strawberries are getting sufficient sunlight. You are unlikely to get fully ripe strawberries if they have been planted in the shade.

After all, few fruits grow successfully without the sun. If your plants aren’t getting adequate sunlight, you can use lamps instead.

Add fertilizer to your soil. Fertilizers with high traces of nitrogen are best suited to strawberry plants.

What is the Strawberry Ripening Process?

Strawberries ripen over time. Generally, it takes around 3 months to grow and ripen strawberries.

You can usually tell whether a strawberry is not yet ripe because it will be green berries instead of red. A green strawberry won’t just look odd, but it may have an acidic taste.

The peak season to pick strawberries is when the weather is warm. Like most fruits, between early summer and late summer is usually the optimal time to pick strawberries, though they can remain fresh until the beginning of fall.

How Should You Store Strawberries?

To keep your strawberries fresh for as long as possible, you must know how to store them properly.

You can also try using a vinegar bath. Simply submerge the strawberries in a tub containing a cup of white vinegar and two cups of water.

Then remove the strawberries after 20 minutes before washing them thoroughly. From our experience, this is not the best way of keeping strawberries fresh, though it does clean them effectively.

The best way of storing fresh strawberries is to put them in the vegetable crisper drawer of the fridge. Put paper towels underneath the strawberries to absorb any moisture.

If you wish to preserve your strawberries for as long as possible, you should transfer them to the freezer. Frozen strawberries tend to last for between 6 and 12 months. Plus, they can be used in baking.

Before eating them, you should wash your strawberries with water. This will remove any dirt that may be on the surface.

How To Tell If Strawberries Have Gone Bad

If you over-ripen these fruits, you could end up with rotten strawberries. One of the most obvious signs of rotten fruit is mold, which will cause it to rot quickly. However, the taste, smell, texture, and color may also be off.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Do I Have White Strawberries?

If you have grown your own strawberries and have been shocked to discover that they are white, this is usually attributed to the changing temperatures during the growing process. Alternatively, white strawberries are grown in Japan.

Are Cooked Strawberries Tasty?

Yes! Roasted strawberries are super sweet and juicy. Plus, they are quite versatile and can be used in a range of dishes.

What Is The Best Way of Seasoning Strawberries?

If you wish to enhance the taste of this delicious food, all you have to do is add sugar or lemon juice. The juice of other citrus fruits can also be used. Some people even enjoy flavoring strawberries with balsamic vinegar, though this is an acquired taste.

Closing Remarks

If you’ve picked up a punnet of store-bought strawberries, you may have been disappointed to discover that it’s filled with underripe strawberries. You may even have some green strawberries.

Luckily, you can use the above methods to easily change this. Consequently, you can eat this delicious fruit when they’re perfectly ripe.

Picture of Kathryn Sewell

Kathryn Sewell

Hi! I'm Kate and I have been baking and cooking for as long as I can remember. I like to share the most interesting tips and recipes I try here on What Kate Baked for you to enjoy. If you have a favorite recipe you'd like to share send it over on social.

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