Someone looking for a healthy sweet treat may be delighted to take home a bag of clementines. Unfortunately, fruits don’t last forever, so it helps to know how long those clementines will last.
Like most other foods, the lifespan of clementines is largely dependent on how they are stored.
- Clementines stored at room temperature, such as on the counter or in the pantry, will last for about a week.
- Clementines stored in the refrigerator will last for about two weeks.
- Clementines, when properly stored, can last for up to three months in the freezer without syrup, and ten to twelve months in syrup.
Typically, you will be able to tell when clementines have gone bad, but it still helps to know what to expect in terms of shelf life.
How Long Do Clementines Last?
You may want to store your clementines at room temperature, in the fridge, or in the freezer, depending on how many you buy and how quickly you eat them.
How Long Do Clementines Last Outside
Clementines can be stored at room temperature for a relatively short period of time. Typically, clementines will stay good for about a week at room temperature.
While clementines will go bad the soonest at room temperature, this may not be an issue if you are going to eat them quickly, especially because many people much prefer the flavor and texture of room temperature clementines.
Just be sure to keep an eye on your clementines and watch for signs of aging or rotting as they near the one-week mark, as you may not know how old they were when you bought them.
How Long Do Clementines Last in the Fridge
If you need your clementines to last a little while longer, you can refrigerate them. Refrigerated clementines can last one to two weeks, sometimes up to three weeks.
The fridge is a good place to keep clementines if you buy more than you can eat in just a few days. Just like how some people much prefer room temperature clementines, there are those who love cold clementines too.
If you are one of those who prefer room temperature clementines but still want to keep them good longer, you can always keep them in the fridge, and keep just a few out to eat warm over a few days.
How Long Do Clementines Last in the Freezer
You may be surprised to find that clementines can be frozen! There are basically two methods of freezing them: with a simple syrup and without.
It’s fairly easy to make a simple homemade syrup to freeze your clementines in (see “Can You Freeze Clementines? How?). They will last much longer this way, up to one year. The downside to this is all the sugar in the syrup.
If you don’t want all that sugar in your clementines, or if you simply can’t be bothered to make the syrup, you can freeze them by themselves. They should stay good for about three months without syrup.
One way of storing clementines is not necessarily better than another. It all depends on how you like your clementines and how long you want to keep them.
How To Tell If Clementines Have Gone Bad / How To Know Clementines are Fresh
It’s fairly easy to tell if clementines have gone bad. Here’s what you can check for
Mold: The most obvious indication of bad clementines is mold. If you see mold on a clementine, throw it away. If you see mold on just one of a bag or bowl of clementines, consider throwing them all away, as mold can spread quickly.
Softness: Once clementines start to go bad, they become soft and mushy. Feel and lightly squeeze your clementines to see if they have soft spots. If you find soft spots, that’s a sign to throw the fruit away.
Discoloration: Old clementines can become discolored on their skin. The minor discoloration is not dangerous, but drastic color changes mean that the fruit has gone bad.
Smell: Clementines have a very distinct “orange” smell. The smell should not be very strong. If it develops a very strong scent, odor, or otherwise unusual smell, that means that the fruit is likely rotten and you should throw it away.
Taste: If you’ve checked everything else and still can’t tell if your clementines are okay to eat, go ahead and taste them. If they taste okay, great! Enjoy your fruit. If not, of course, throw them away.
How to Store Clementines?
Clementines are very easy to store, but here are a few tips to get you started.
Use your crisper drawer. The ideal storage location for clementines is the crisper drawer of your refrigerator. They stay fresh the longest here, as the environment does well to preserve them.
Avoid direct sunlight. If you keep your clementines on the counter, make sure they are kept out of direct sunlight. Leaving them exposed to the sun can cause your clementines to spoil faster.
No sealed containers (except when freezing). Clementines are one food that should never be kept in a sealed, airtight container, as this can cause mold to grow. Any chosen container should be open or ventilated. The exception to this is freezing your clementines.
Can You Freeze Clementines? How?
There are two main methods of freezing clementines: with syrup and without. Using syrup will preserve them longer, but uses sugar.
To freeze clementines without syrup:
Peel the clementines. Peel the skin off the clementines, and peel as much of the white membrane off as you can as well.
Cut into quarters. Cut or separate your clementines into quarters, or smaller pieces if you prefer.
Freeze in freezer-safe container. Place the clementines in a freezer-safe airtight container or freezer bag and place them in the freezer. Store them for up to three months.
To freeze clementines in syrup:
Prepare them the same way as above. Follow the same instructions as above, placing your clementines into their container (preferably not a bag).
Make your syrup. Stir 2 ¾ cups of sugar into 4 cups of water over medium-high heat. Stir frequently until the sugar is completely dissolved and the sugar has reached a rolling boil. Remove from heat and let it reach room temperature.
Pour syrup over the clementines. Once your syrup has cooled, pour it over the clementines into the container.
Place them in the freezer. Seal your container and put it in the freezer. Store for up to one year.
How to Thaw Clementines?
To thaw clementines that have been frozen without syrup, simply take the container out of the freezer and leave it at room temperature for half an hour.
To thaw clementines in syrup, move the container into the fridge, and leave it there for at least a few hours, preferably overnight, until they are thawed.
Frequently Asked Questions About Clementines’ Shelf Life
It’s pretty easy to store clementines, but there are a few questions that tend to pop up from time to time.
Can clementines be rinsed with a small amount of bleach to prevent mold? Bleach, even when heavily diluted in water, can easily taint the fruit, even if it only touches the skin. The skin may absorb the bleach and contaminate the fruit. Never use bleach on your fruit, as it may lead to poisoning.
How can I tell if clementines at the store are good? You can use many of the methods listed above to check if clementines at the store are good. Look at them to check for signs of discoloration, and gently feel them for soft spots or mushiness. It is best to look for clementines that are firm and uniform in color.
Clementines may not have the longest shelf life, but they can be preserved somewhat easily, and it is easy to tell if they have gone bad. Be sure to store them properly to keep them fresh longer.