Can I store shallots in fridge?

Shallots are a type of onion that have a mild, sweet, and aromatic flavor. They are a very versatile ingredient that can be used raw or cooked in many dishes. However, like other onions and alliums, proper storage is important to preserve freshness and prevent sprouting.

Quick Answers

– Yes, you can store shallots in the refrigerator. This will help extend their shelf life compared to storing at room temperature.

– Whole, unpeeled shallots will last 2-3 months when stored properly in the fridge.

– Keep shallots in a breathable container or bag, such as a mesh or paper bag. Avoid airtight containers.

– Store shallots in the high-humidity crisper drawer of your fridge at 32-35°F.

– Raw shallots last about 1 week once peeled and chopped. Use leftover chopped shallots within a few days.

– Cooked shallots will last 3-4 days stored in an airtight container in the fridge.

– Look for signs of spoilage like sprouting, mushy texture, or off smells before using refrigerated shallots.

Can You Refrigerate Whole Shallots?

Yes, storing whole shallots in the refrigerator is recommended for longest shelf life. The ideal temperature range is 32-35°F. At cooler fridge temps, whole shallots can be kept fresh for 2-3 months.

Leaving shallots out on the counter at room temperature is not ideal, as they will start to sprout and dry out within 2-3 weeks. The humidity in the refrigerator helps keep shallots moist and firm for extended storage.

Tips for Storing Whole Shallots in the Fridge

Here are some tips for proper storage of whole, fresh shallots in the refrigerator:

  • Leave shallot skins on – The outer papery skin helps protect the shallot bulb inside from losing moisture in the fridge environment.
  • Place in breathable packaging – Use mesh or paper bags. Avoid sealing shallots in airtight plastic bags or containers.
  • Store in high humidity drawer – The crisper drawer where you keep fruits and veggies is ideal.
  • Keep away from ethylene producing fruits – Fruits like apples, pears, and tomatoes release a gas that hastens ripening and spoilage.
  • Inspect regularly – Occasionally check for any soft, mushy bulbs that may be starting to spoil and remove them.

How Long Do Peeled and Chopped Shallots Last Refrigerated?

Once peeled and chopped, shallots will only stay fresh in the refrigerator for about 1 week before quality declines. Chopping ruptures the cells of the shallot, releasing enzymes that accelerate moisture loss.

Within a few days of chopping, raw shallots will start to dry out and become slightly limp. After 5-7 days, they are more prone to browning and off-flavors.

For best results, try to only peel and chop as many shallots as you plan to use within the next several days. Tightly wrap any unused portion in plastic wrap.

You can also place chopped shallots in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag with a damp paper towel. The moisture from the paper towel creates a more humid environment to help extend shelf life a few extra days.

Signs Raw Chopped Shallots Are Going Bad

Watch for these signs that refrigerated chopped shallots are past their prime and need to be discarded:

  • Dry, shriveled, limp texture
  • Brown or gray discoloration
  • Off smells – smell before using
  • Bitter, pungent flavor

How to Store Cooked Shallots

Cooked shallots, whether sautéed, roasted, or used in recipes, can be refrigerated for 3 to 4 days until use. Store them in an airtight container to prevent drying out.

The additional moisture from cooking helps extend the refrigerated shelf life compared to raw shallots. Place the container on a refrigerator shelf rather than in the door to avoid temperature fluctuations.

Any leftover cooked shallots can also be frozen for longer term storage. Simply transfer to a freezer container or bag, label, and freeze. They will keep for about 6 months before losing flavor and texture quality.

Reheating Leftover Cooked Shallots

To reheat cooked refrigerated shallots, the best method is either:

  • Microwave – Place in a microwave-safe dish, cover, and microwave in 30 second intervals until heated through.
  • Stovetop – Place in a skillet with a bit of butter or oil over medium heat. Stir and heat until warmed through, about 2-3 minutes.

Avoid reheating cooked shallots more than once, as the texture tends to become increasingly mushy.

How to Freeze Shallots

Freezing is another excellent way to preserve shallots for several months beyond refrigerator storage. Both raw and cooked shallots freeze well.

Freezing Raw Shallots

To freeze raw shallots:

  1. Peel shallots and chop into pieces. Smaller pieces will be easier to use later.
  2. Spread chopped shallots in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  3. Place in freezer for 1-2 hours, until fully frozen.
  4. Transfer frozen shallots to a freezer bag or airtight container, removing as much air as possible.
  5. Label with contents and freeze for up to 6 months.

Frozen raw shallots are best used for cooking in soups, stews, curries and other dishes rather than eating raw. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before using.

Freezing Cooked Shallots

Cooked shallots also freeze well up to about 6 months. Allow cooked shallots to fully cool, then:

  1. Transfer shallots to a freezer container or bag.
  2. Press out excess air and seal.
  3. Label container with contents and date.
  4. Lay flat in freezer to freeze quickly.

Thaw cooked frozen shallots in the refrigerator before reheating to use in recipes. Or add frozen to hot dishes when cooking.

How to Prepare Shallots for Long-Term Storage

For the longest shelf life, shallots should be stored with the thin outer skin still intact. However, some recipes call for easily peeled shallots.

Here are some tips if you want to prepare shallots for storage by removing the outer layer:

  • Cure shallots – After harvesting, allow shallots to cure for 1-2 weeks spread out in a cool, dry, well-ventilated area. This dries and toughens the skin for longer viability.
  • Trim tops – Use a sharp knife to trim the stem end of the shallot, about 1⁄4 inch above the bulb.
  • Brush off dirt – Gently brush off any excess dirt but leave the outer skin intact.
  • Dry thoroughly – Blot with a paper towel to remove any moisture from the surface.
  • Store in breathable packaging – Place cured, trimmed shallots in mesh bags or trays for air circulation.

Prepared shallots will still store for 1-2 months in the refrigerator crisper drawer. Check periodically for any sprouting or softening.

Signs of Spoiled Shallots

When storing shallots in the refrigerator, it’s important to occasionally check them for signs of spoilage. Discard any shallots that are mushy, moldy, or have green sprouts.

Here are some common signs that refrigerated shallots have spoiled and should be thrown out:

  • Slimy, mushy or soft texture
  • Shriveled, dry appearance
  • Mold or fuzzy growth
  • Green sprouts
  • Brown or black spots
  • Off odors
  • Bitter flavor when tasted

A high moisture environment can sometimes cause shallots to deteriorate faster. Check the crisper drawer for excess moisture and wipe out as needed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you freeze raw shallots?

Yes, raw shallots freeze very well. Peel and chop shallots, then spread in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze solid. Transfer to bags or containers, removing excess air. Frozen raw shallots will keep for about 6 months.

How long do fresh shallots last unrefrigerated?

At room temperature, fresh shallots will only last around 2-3 weeks before starting to sprout and dry out. For best quality and to prevent spoilage, shallots should be refrigerated.

What happens if you refrigerate shallots too long?

Over time in the fridge, shallots will start to shrivel, sprout, and take on a soft, mushy texture. Extended refrigeration can also cause off odors, mold growth, and a bitter taste. Shallots stored too long may need to be discarded.

Can you freeze cooked shallots?

Yes, cooked shallots can be frozen for long-term storage. Allow cooked shallots to cool fully, then transfer to a freezer bag or container. Press out excess air and seal. Cooked frozen shallots will keep for about 6 months.

How do you revive limp shallots?

If refrigerated shallots start to become limp or soft, you can revive them by soaking in ice water for 5-10 minutes. Then dry thoroughly with paper towels before refrigerating again in breathable packaging. This can extend usability for another week or so.

Storing Shallots – Key Takeaways

  • Keep shallots freshest by storing whole, unpeeled bulbs in the refrigerator crisper drawer in breathable mesh or paper bags.
  • Whole shallots will last around 2-3 months when properly stored in the fridge.
  • Once peeled and chopped, shallots only last about 1 week refrigerated.
  • Use raw chopped shallots within a few days for best quality.
  • Cooked shallots keep 3-4 days refrigerated.
  • Freeze raw or cooked shallots for storage up to 6 months.
  • Check refrigerated shallots frequently for signs of spoilage like sprouting or mushiness.


With proper storage techniques, shallots can be kept fresh in the refrigerator or freezer for extended periods. Keeping them cold and in breathable packaging prevents sprouting and drying out. Refrigerate unpeeled shallots up to 2-3 months, chopped shallots up to 1 week, and cooked shallots 3-4 days for best flavor and quality. Freezing also allows you to store raw or cooked shallots for up to 6 months. Check shallots regularly and discard any that show signs of spoilage.

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