How Do You Store a Cut Tomato?

Last Updated on May 11, 2023 by Lauren Beck

As a food lover, I always have fresh produce on hand, including plenty of juicy, ripe tomatoes. But what do you do when you’ve only used part of a tomato and need to store the rest? 

It’s a question that many people struggle with, but the answer is simpler than you might think. In this article, I’ll share my tips and tricks for storing cut tomatoes so that they stay fresh and delicious for as long as possible.

How Do You Store a Cut Tomato?

Place a cut tomato in an airtight container or wrap it in plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator. This will help prevent moisture loss and slow down the spoilage process.

Should Sliced Tomatoes Be Refrigerated?

Yes, sliced tomatoes should be refrigerated. This will help prevent bacteria growth and slow the spoilage process.

Can You Leave a Cut Tomato on the Counter?

It’s best to avoid leaving a cut tomato on the counter for an extended period of time. This can cause the tomato to spoil quickly and increase the risk of foodborne illness.

Do Tomatoes Last Longer in the Fridge or on the Counter?

Tomatoes can last longer when stored in the refrigerator. However, refrigeration can also affect the texture and flavor of the tomato. 

It’s important to balance storage time and quality when deciding where to store your tomatoes.

Should Tomatoes Be Refrigerated?

Person Slicing Tomatoes

Whole, uncut tomatoes can be stored at room temperature until ripe. Once they are ripe, they should be refrigerated to slow down the spoilage process. 

However, refrigeration can affect the texture and flavor of the tomato. If you prefer a juicier, more flavorful tomato, consider storing them at room temperature until you’re ready to use them.

Tips for Storing Tomatoes

  • Store tomatoes stem-side down to help prevent moisture loss.
  • Don’t store tomatoes in direct sunlight, as this can cause them to ripen too quickly.
  • Keep tomatoes away from ethylene-producing fruits, such as bananas and apples, as this can cause them to ripen too quickly.
  • Only wash tomatoes right before using them, as excess moisture can lead to spoilage.
  • Use ripe tomatoes within a few days for the best quality.

Can You Freeze Tomatoes?

Yes, tomatoes can be frozen for later use. To freeze tomatoes, wash and dry them, then cut out the stem and any blemishes [1]. 

Freeze them whole or chop them into pieces and store them in a freezer-safe container. Frozen tomatoes can be used in soups, stews, and sauces.

How Do You Keep Tomatoes Fresh After Slicing?

To keep sliced tomatoes fresh, store them in an airtight container or wrap them in plastic wrap and refrigerate. This will help prevent moisture loss and slow down the spoilage process. 

If you have a lot of sliced tomatoes to store, consider using a sealable bag or container and layering the slices with paper towels to help absorb excess moisture.

Do You Wash Tomatoes After Cutting?

Washing tomatoes after cutting them is unnecessary, as long as they were washed before cutting. 

However, if the tomato was not washed before cutting, it’s a good idea to rinse it off to remove any dirt or debris.

What Happens if You Don’t Wash a Tomato?

If you don’t wash a tomato before cutting it, you risk consuming any dirt or bacteria on the surface of the tomato. 

This can increase the risk of foodborne illness. It’s always best to wash your produce before consuming it to ensure it’s safe to eat.


Storing cut tomatoes properly is key to getting the most out of this versatile ingredient. Keeping them fresh is crucial whether you’re using them in a salad, sandwich, or sauce. 

From refrigeration to airtight containers, you can use various techniques to extend the shelf life of your cut tomatoes. And with a little know-how, you can enjoy juicy, flavorful tomatoes in all your favorite recipes. 

So next time you’re faced with a leftover tomato, follow these tips and keep your produce fresher for longer.


Lauren Beck
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