Many people like buying a five-pound bag of potatoes, as it’s faster than picking out four or five individual potatoes, and pre-bagged is cheaper to purchase. Of course, after you get them home, you use them once and then they sit because you keep forgetting to use them! Then, lo and behold, they have little sprouts and they are making babies.
Sprouting potatoes can still be used, but you need to cut out the sprouts. If they are also wrinkled and soft, then they will have no taste and be deficient in nutrients. You might want to toss them at this stage.
Here are some of the traditional methods that our forebears and maybe Grandma passed down to her children on how to save your potatoes.
6. Storing Temperatures for Your Potatoes
The ideal storage temperature is 45-50 degrees F, which will give you four to five months of fresh potatoes. If temperatures change frequently, sprouting can start. Basement storage works well if you have one.
5. Potatoes Want No Bad Company, So Keep Them Happy
Although many sites may say to try keeping an apple with your potato, that information comes from an experiment from the 1930s, and has since been disproven. It has been found that apples give off ethylene gas and can actually speed up sprouting. Same goes for onions, bananas or pears; you do not want to place them near your potatoes.
4. Keeping Them Dry
Do not wash your potatoes until you are ready to use them. Water traps moisture in the skin and could rot them sooner, so give them good air circulation.
3. Best Storage Containers
Brown paper bags provide good ventilation. Do not use plastic, as it will cause the potatoes to get too moist. Baskets or even cardboard boxes will work well.
2. Keep Them in a Dark Place
If the potatoes see too much sun or light, they could sprout and turn green due to the chemical solanine. You do not want to eat a green potato as it could make you sick, so cut off those sections before cooking. Basements, closets, or cabinets work for a dark hiding place.
1. Herbs Can Help Slow Sprouting
Some people have found that dried herbs of lavender, rosemary, sage, or mints sprinkled among the potatoes can help delay sprouting or decay.Related: 10 Healthy Reasons to Eat Potatoes