Refrigeration will dramatically inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria on many types of prepared and cooked foods. It is usually advised to refrigerate foods at a temperature between 35 and 38 degrees Fahrenheit (between 1 °C and 3 °C). While refrigeration can decrease spoilage on many different kinds of foods, it is not recommended for every edible item in the kitchen. Colder temperatures can change the texture and taste of many foods, and sometimes even the nutritional value. The following information describes 35 foods you should not put in the fridge and the reasons why they are best left out at room temperature.
Coffee needs a dry, cool area to remain as fresh as possible. Refrigerator temperatures are normally too cold. Coffee should also stay in an air tight container to retain a high quality. The National Coffee Association states that coffee beans should be stored at room temperature and kept away from heat, moisture, and light.
Cold temperatures tend to have a drying effect on many items. Bread is a food that will become dry and stale if refrigerated. Bread may also be chewy in texture if kept for very long in a cold environment.
Tomatoes will lose much of their rich, tangy flavor if stored in the refrigerator. Cold temperatures will also change the texture of tomatoes as well as break down certain membranes on the inside. They can ultimately become mealy, mushy, and tasteless. Tomatoes will ripen at a steady rate and maintain their delicious flavor if kept on the counter at room temperature.
Basil has a tendency to absorb other smells that may be in the refrigerator. Not only can refrigeration destroy the flavoring power of basil, but the leaves may begin to wilt. Cooking experts site Epicurious.com suggests treating basil like you would cut flowers. Keeping the basil in a glass of water on the counter is sufficient for keeping it fresh.
Eggplants are vegetables that are temperature sensitive, and extended periods in the refrigerator may actually be harmful. Below 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10°C) can damage the texture as well as the flavor of the eggplant. Eggplant should be stored at room temperature and away from other fruits and vegetables.