This Wacky Storage Method Will Save Your Asparagus

Spring is a month away but if you think I haven’t tried cooking with the sad stalks of asparagus that are available in grocery stores right now, you’re wrong. Sure, they do the job for a quick roast side dish, especially when sprinkled with crispy cheesy breadcrumbs. But asparagus soup, crostatas, veggie frittatas, and spring pasta recipes will have to wait until a robin pats me gently on the shoulder and says “it’s time.”

Whether there’s still snow on the ground in your area or you can finally step out in just a light denim jacket, you should treasure those precious green stems. If you buy asparagus, take good care of it. The best way to store fresh asparagus is like a bouquet of tulips: that is, upright in a glass jar with an inch of water. This will keep the asparagus tips from becoming mushy and smelly, while maintaining the bright green color of the stem. Additionally, a large mason jar or tall drinking glass will help accommodate the towering stems so they can stay fresh for days. “Even better, cut the bottom an inch off the bottom before sticking them in a vase in your fridge,” says Food52 community member Alyssa.

In general, fresh asparagus should be refrigerated, but with this method you don’t have to. “If you keep them upright in water, like in the previous answer, you really don’t need to refrigerate them. It’s fine to keep them on the counter for a few days that way,” the user writes Pierino.

Once they’re upright and proud, loosely cover the asparagus with a plastic bag and store the jar in the fridge (again, not essential, but it’s our favorite method). Just make sure you don’t pack them too tight (get rid of tying the bag with constricting ribbing!) because tops need air circulation; otherwise, they’ll go soft in a day or two, ruining the rods we’ve all waited so long to buy.