Keep your ginger fresh and flavorful with these simple tips! Follow our guide to learn how to store ginger in the fridge or freezer, and you’ll enjoy its delicious taste for months to come.
Ginger is a flavorful and versatile ingredient you can use to make alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages as well as dishes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. It has numerous health benefits and can be consumed in various forms.
Keep reading to discover everything you need to know about ginger, including medical advantages and precautions, and most popular uses. We’re also showing you how to store and cut ginger correctly.
Ginger: What You Need to Know
Ginger is a spice that comes from the root of the ginger plant. It is often used in Asian cuisine and has a peppery, slightly sweet flavor. Ginger is also a popular remedy for nausea and indigestion. It contains properties that have been used to treat many of these conditions for thousands of years.
Ginger root can be taken fresh, dried, powdered, or as a supplement. It is commonly used by many cultures throughout Asia, Europe, and South America to treat everything from colds to menstrual disorders.
Despite its medicinal use, the majority of people are not aware of how ginger works on a chemical level. It is believed that ginger acts directly on the gastrointestinal tract, relaxing muscles and stimulating digestive juices. Other studies have found it to be effective in treating long-term conditions, such as arthritis.
Health Benefits: What Is Ginger Good For
Ginger is a safe and effective alternative to pharmaceutical drugs for many common ailments. It can relieve pain and treat conditions without the risk of side effects. Ingesting ginger before meal times may also help you eat less because it increases feelings of fullness, making it an excellent choice for weight loss.
For those with diabetes, ginger also can also lower blood sugar. It can reduce insulin resistance and slow the rate at which food moves through the digestive system, preventing sharp rises in blood sugar levels.
Because ginger has the ability to lower blood sugar, it’s best to consult your doctor before taking ginger if you have diabetes or low blood sugar; it may affect how much insulin you need and cause hypoglycemia.
Additionally, some people are allergic to ginger and can suffer from diarrhea and stomach cramps after ingesting it. Pregnant women should avoid consuming too much ginger because not enough studies have been conducted to determine its safety.
Most Popular Uses for Ginger
Here are the most popular ways in which you can use ginger:
- Tea. If you’re wondering how to make ginger tea, just steep 1 tsp of dried ginger or 2-3 slices of fresh root in hot water for 10 minutes, then strain well before drinking. The taste is peppery with a hint of sweetness, so try adding honey if you prefer your tea sweetened.
- Juice. Mix ginger juice with apple juice to reduce its sharpness; this combination makes an excellent healthy morning drink or a pick-me-up during flu season. You can also add lemon if you want to cut the flavor further.
- Soup base. Fry 1 tbsp chopped onion until transparent, then add 4 cups low sodium chicken broth, 1 tsp salt, pepper to taste, 1 tsp dried thyme, 1 tsp dried parsley, and a couple of slices of fresh ginger (or 1/2 tsp ginger powder). Simmer until the vegetables are tender and puree or sieve if you like a finer texture.
- Smoothies. Making a smooth is a fantastic way to get the benefits of ginger without having to taste it. Add small slices of fresh ginger root before blending your favorite smoothie ingredients for added flavor and health benefits.
- Baked goods. Replace 1/8-1/4 cup sugar with molasses in recipes that call for brown sugar or use honey as a substitute to cut back on added sugars. Gingerbread is a popular holiday treat made from spices, molasses, and other sweeteners, so you can certainly try this at home!
- Salad dressings. Add 1 tbsp freshly diced ginger and 2 tbsp rice vinegar or brown rice to make a tasty salad dressing; you can also add soy sauce (or tamari) for added flavor and health benefits.
- Sautéed vegetables. Ginger adds depth of flavor when cooking green beans, broccoli, carrots, and other veggies. Finely slice the ginger root and mix it with sesame oil before adding it to your favorite veggies that are almost finished cooking. You can also try this combo on whole wheat pasta or steamed brown rice for a quick and easy meal!
- Condiments. You can replace honey mustard with an equal mixture of Dijon mustard and honey. Or you can replace ketchup with puree dates mixed with apple cider vinegar and a pinch of cayenne. It’s much healthier and tastes great too!
How to Store Ginger
Check out the following easy instructions for storing raw ginger:
- Cut the ginger into small pieces with a sharp knife. You should cut off and discard the knobby ends of the ginger root, along with any soft spots, before using it in your recipes.
- Peel the ginger with a vegetable peeler. Ginger needs to be peeled because its skin is too thick for most types of knives. You need to use a vegetable peeler or a spoon to remove it completely. It’s important to only peel away the section of skin you are planning on using since you cannot re-peel what has already been scraped off.
- Place the ginger in an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator. Leave at least one between each piece so that they aren’t touching.
- Keep the container out of direct sunlight and air. The ginger will keep for about 3 weeks, but it is best to use it within a week after opening and cutting it.
How to Store Fresh Ginger
You can store fresh ginger in the refrigerator for about 1 week. If you plan to use it within a couple of days, place it in an airtight plastic bag and store it in the crisper drawer in your fridge. Make sure to keep the ginger nice and dry; if there’s any moisture in there, mold may develop.
How to Store Ginger Root
If you’re interested in storing ginger root for more than 1 week, here’s what you need to do:
- Remove the skin and cut it into small pieces.
- Line a cookie sheet with wax paper or parchment paper.
- Place the ginger on the cookie sheet.
- Put another piece of wax paper with another cookie sheet on top.
- Label this package using a marker and store it in the freezer.
Additional Tips for Storing Ginger
Here are a few more helpful tips for storing ginger:
- If there are any signs of mold on your ginger, discard it immediately.
- Make sure to store ginger in a cool, dark place and avoid direct sunlight. Ginger will dry out if exposed to high temperatures or bright light.
- When you cut into your fresh ginger root, try not to expose more of the flesh than necessary while peeling off the skin with a vegetable peeler. It may be tempting to get every little drop off the root, but doing so will increase its air exposure and speed up its overall deterioration faster. You can also try peeling off small slices with a sharp knife.
- Buy only as much fresh ginger as you know you’ll be using within 1-2 days. Plus, you can peel away bigger pieces since they have a better chance of making it past 1 day; it’s definitely better than peeling off thin slices that won’t last.
- If your fresh ginger is starting to sprout little green shoots, you can use this as a telltale sign that it’s time to consume it! Besides, sprouted ginger root has a much stronger flavor and spiciness.
- It’s possible to preserve ginger in spirits. Vodka is an excellent choice since it’s clear and you will be able to tell if any bacteria sits in. Fill a small glass jar with ginger, cover it with vodka, and seal it. It should last for a few weeks. If the vodka becomes cloudy, throw away the contents since that’s a sign of bacteria.
- You can also store ginger in sugar. After peeling and chopping the ginger root, pack it tightly into a sterilized jar and cover it with granulated sugar; make sure the jar is completely clean beforehand. Seal the jar tightly and store it in a cool, dry place for about 3 weeks.
- It’s possible to freeze whole ginger, with the skin, for an indefinite amount of time. Just place it in an airtight plastic bag before placing it in the refrigerator. When you want to use the ginger, cut only the part you need and put the leftovers back. No thawing is necessary since it’s easy to peel frozen ginger. Or you can freeze only the ginger root.
- The best way to store ginger is by planting it in a small pot on the windowsill. Remove the plant, cut the amount of root you need, place the plant back in the soil, and make sure to water it regularly. It’s a simple and effective way to take advantage of an infinite amount of ginger.
How to Cut Ginger
Check out the following tips for cutting ginger effortlessly:
- Use a potato peeler to peel the ginger’s skin. You can also use the edge of a spoon.
- A sharp knife is not the best way to go about peeling ginger since the skin is not smooth; you are likely to cut yourself or remove skin that’s too thick.
- If you’re wondering how to mince ginger, the simplest method is by turning to a grater (smallest holes). You can also use a zester.
- Chop the ginger until it’s minced by using a chef’s knife. Make sure to cut the ginger slices in one direction and chop until you obtain small pieces.
- When cutting fresh ginger, it’s crucial to not touch the root at all with your hands. Any contact between your skin and this root will increase its spiciness, so be sure to use a spoon or knife for cutting purposes only.
- Using a spoon or knife is significantly better than using a grater since ginger can get stuck in those tiny crevices and spread everywhere over bland dishes.
- Feel free to throw away the knobby bump of ginger that usually sticks out on one side; it has no real purpose while cooking.
- Make sure there is plenty of space around you when you’re prepping fresh ginger; you may accidentally drop small pieces on the floor.
Learn more information about ginger.
Do you have to peel ginger?
No, it’s not necessary to peel ginger. You can just scrub it with a brush if the skin is dirty. In fact, if you plan on freezing the ginger to keep it stored for a long amount of time, it’s best to leave the root whole (unpeeled).
Can you freeze ginger?
Yes, freezing ginger is possible, and it will not lose its nutrients or flavor. Just cut the amount of root you need and store the rest in a resealable bag before putting it away in a cool, dry place or placing it in the fridge.
How long does ginger last?
The shelf life of ginger depends on how well you store it and how fresh the root was, to begin with. It can last for about 1 week when stored in the fridge, but only a few days when stored at room temperature.
Ginger that’s properly stored in an airtight can last around 3 months – even longer when freezing it. Or, you can have an unlimited supply of ginger by placing it in a pot above the windowsill.
Can you eat ginger raw?
Yes, unlike other spices such as black pepper, ginger has no adverse effects when eaten raw. In fact, many people like to grate fresh ginger on salads or fish for a kick of flavor. Plus, the grating process will release the enzymes needed for digestion; it’s great for your stomach and ultimately works up an appetite.
How to tell if ginger is bad?
Ginger that has gone bad will not look appealing at all. If you see any signs of contamination (mold, discoloration), discard the ginger immediately.
Does it matter what side of ginger I chop from?
The only difference in chopping one side or another is that one piece will contain more of the knobby part (the end of the root), while the other will have a little bit less. As far as taste and health benefits are concerned, it makes no difference which side you chop.
How to prepare ginger root?
You can grill, boil, or roast peeled ginger root. Once it’s cooked and healthy fiber has been broken down, you can mix the pulp with some water, extract the ginger juice and enjoy!
How to freeze ginger?
Grate or cut the ginger root into slices before putting it in a zip-lock bag. This way, the ginger will thaw faster, and you’ll be able to cook with it as soon as possible.
How to peel ginger?
Wash the ginger root and use a spoon to remove any dirt still on the skin. With a sharp knife, scrape off the skin with a quick and firm motion.
You can also use a spoon to peel the ginger root while you scrape it with a knife. This way, you won’t risk cutting yourself. However, the best way to peel ginger is by using a potato peeler.
How to grate ginger?
Grate peeled ginger using a microplane grater, if possible. If you don’t have one at home, use the smallest holes on your standard grater.
How to cut ginger root?
The best way to cut ginger root is by first slicing it and then chopping the slices into small pieces. That way, you won’t waste too much time on this tedious task.
How to pick fresh ginger root?
Fresh ginger root is widely available in grocery stores and supermarkets. Some farmers’ markets also carry it during certain seasons, depending on the region of the country. Look for a firm ginger root with no bruising or soft spots. The skin should be smooth and have a light brown color, while the inside of the root should be a vibrant pink.
Is ginger good for you?
Ginger is great for reducing nausea and relieving gastrointestinal discomfort (e.g. chemotherapy, morning sickness in pregnancy). Doctors recommend a dosage of 1 gram per day to experience its benefits without any adverse effects. Still, you should always talk with your doctor before taking supplements instead of prescription medications.
Pregnant women should take half this amount since too much can trigger premature contractions. Ginger ale has is effective in treating nausea triggered during pregnancy, but it’s best to check with your doctor before going over the recommended dosage. It’s also worth noting that too much ginger can make you more susceptible to sunburn.
Is fresh ginger the same as ground ginger?
Yes, most forms of dried ginger are ground ginger.
Why is my ginger wet when I buy it?
If your fresh ginger root is wet, that’s because there was too much moisture in the air. Or the ginger was transported on a rainy day. You should only buy ginger treated to withstand extra humidity without getting mushy.
Can dogs eat ginger?
Yes, dogs can eat ginger. But you should only feed them in small quantities. It’s best to add a couple of drops of essential ginger oil to your dog’s food to relieve stomach pain.
Is ginger ale good for you?
Ginger ale contains essential ginger oil and shares some benefits with fresh ginger. However, there is no scientific evidence to back up the claim that drinking ginger ale will help treat conditions such as arthritis and joint pain.
What is ginger beer?
Ginger beer is fresh ginger juice that has been fermented. It’s one of the most popular ginger beverages in Jamaica and can also be found in different parts of Asia. The mixture is allowed to ferment naturally without any artificial preservatives and flavor enhancers like aspartame.
Does ginger beer have alcohol?
No. So if you come across a ginger beer with alcohol, know that it’s not the real deal. Even pregnant women can enjoy ginger beer.
Does ginger ale have caffeine?
No, ginger ale doesn’t contain caffeine. However, it might still be necessary to check the label before you buy it; some brands like Canada Dry Ginger Ale contain caffeine.
What is ginger tea good for?
Ginger tea contains ginger essential oil and is a great nausea remedy. However, it’s also effective in reducing pain caused by osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. The recommended dosage is 1 gram per cup, but you should always check with your doctor before taking ginger tea supplements instead of prescription medications.
Is ginger beer gluten-free?
Yes, ginger beer is gluten-free.
How to make ginger beer?
Ginger beer is usually made with fresh ginger, water, and sugar. You can also add lemon to enhance the flavor. Let the mixture ferment for 1 week, strain it, and serve it cold with ice cubes.
How to make ginger shots?
Fill your cocktail shaker with ice cubes and pour all the ingredients over it (fresh ginger, water, sugar). Add flavoring syrups if desired. Shake vigorously before straining into shot glasses.
Is ginger good for acid reflux?
Yes, ginger is effective in reducing heartburn and acid reflux. It’s also a good anti-inflammatory that can reduce pain triggered by osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
How to grow ginger root?
Ginger is a tropical plant that needs cool weather to thrive. Plant ginger root in a pot with loose soil and move it to a shady area. When the roots are about 3 inches long, you can move the pot to a sunny spot with moist soil where it can grow into a full-fledged plant.
How to dry ginger?
To dry your own ginger, peel and cut it into small pieces before setting the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit (135 degrees Celsius). While the oven is on, spread the pieces evenly on a baking sheet lined with aluminum paper and let it dry for 4 to 6 hours. Store dried ginger in an airtight container and use it as needed.
Is ginger a vegetable?
Yes, fresh ginger is a vegetable that belongs to the Zingiberaceae family. It’s also considered an herb because it can be used in cooking and medicinal purposes.
Where to buy ginger root?
You can find fresh ginger root in the produce section of your local supermarket or at an Asian market. Make sure to choose plump ginger roots that are firm and have no shriveled skin or mold on them.
How to make ginger water?
Mix fresh ginger juice with water and add a few drops of lemon or lime to taste. You can also add honey for its antibacterial and antifungal properties.
Final Thoughts on Ginger
There are numerous benefits to including ginger in your diet. From treating conditions related to arthritis and osteoporosis to improving your gut health, ginger is an excellent nausea remedy.
Plus, you can make delicious foods and non-alcoholic drinks such as ginger beer. However, it’s essential to learn the best ways to cut and store ginger on the long term.
What are your favorite tips for using ginger? Let us know in the comment section below!