Kiwi is a citrusy and refreshing fruit that’s great for smoothies, an afternoon snack, or a delightful breakfast parfait.
But these tasty treats are too good to sit in the fridge for long. In fact, they’re usually devoured in a matter of days around our house.
The only problem is waiting for them to get ripe and juicy!
If you’re craving some kiwis but they’re not quite ripe yet, don’t worry! We’ve discovered four different ways to ripen your kiwis faster. With these simple tips and tricks, you can cut your waiting time in half.
How to Tell If Kiwi is Ripe
No one likes a hard, overly tart kiwi. But you also don’t want a mushy kiwi. So, how do you know when it’s just right?
Unlike many other fruits, the skin of the kiwi doesn’t change colors as it ripens. But there are two key indicators to identify whether or not your kiwi is ripe and ready: touch and smell.
Touch: Give the kiwi a little squeeze with your thumb. If it’s hard, it’s not ready yet. If it’s soft but firm with just a little give, it’s ready to eat!
But be careful, because an overripe kiwi will be very soft and mushy and you don’t want that.
Smell: An unripe kiwi won’t smell like anything at all but if it’s ripe, it will have a sweet and fruity scent. This is another sure-tell sign that you kiwi is ripe and ready to eat.
How to Ripen Kiwi Faster
When I buy kiwis at the grocery or the farmer’s market, I’m always eager to peel and eat them for a sweet summer treat. Unfortunately, they’re almost always hard as rocks. And they take their sweet time to ripen.
Fortunately, there are a few ways to ripen a kiwi faster so that you can enjoy this delicious fruit as soon as possible.
Place in Warm Temperature
With any fruit, if you want to speed up the ripening process, you’ll need to keep them someplace warm. But be careful not to put them in direct sunlight as this can be too much for the little kiwis!
The fruit will ripen within 3 to 5 days when stored at room temperature.
Place in a Paper Bag with a Banana or Apple
Another way to get those kiwis ripe is to place them at room temperature in a paper bag… with a friend! Adding in a banana or an apple will help the kiwis ripen faster because of a chemical called ethylene, something both bananas and apples have lots of.
Ethylene is a natural gas that helps speed up the ripening process. When it gets trapped inside the paper bag, this speeds up the ripening process. Perfect for impatient people like me 🙂
Using this technique, they’ll be ripe and ready in 1 to 2 days!
Place in a Bowl of Rice
Remember ethylene, the chemical that helps fruit ripen faster? Well, kiwis have them too, just not as much so they need a little coaxing. Placing kiwis fully submerged in a bowl of rice traps ethylene and causes this delicious, fuzzy fruit to ripen much quicker.
Patience is a virtue, but with something as delicious as kiwi, it’s definitely hard to wait. As mentioned earlier, heat ripens fruit faster, and what’s faster than the microwave?
This method won’t be enough on its own. But you can combine it with the other methods mentioned above to speed things up.
Set your microwave to medium and pop in your kiwis for 15 to 20 seconds. Once you’ve done this, you can either keep them at room temperature, place in a paper bag with a banana or apple, or keep in a bowl of rice.
Your kiwis might just be ready within the day or the next morning! So be sure to check them once or twice a day.
How to Properly Store Kiwi
Maybe you’re not in a huge hurry to use up all the kiwis you bought or you don’t want to ripen all of them in one go. Here’s how to properly store your kiwi so you can enjoy them even longer.
If your kiwi is already ripe, leave them in the refrigerator to preserve their juicy, fruity flavor. They will last up to two weeks. Unripe kiwi stored in the fridge will last up to six weeks.
If you want to store them for 10 to 12 months, you’ll need to freeze them. To do this, you need to follow a few extra steps.
First, slice up your kiwis and lay them out on a pan or plate. Leave in the freezer overnight. This process is called flash-freezing.
The next day, you’ll need to transfer your kiwi slices or chunks into a sealed plastic bag. Place in the freezer and they’ll last up to a year!
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