Originating from the Far East and having been cultivated in China for centuries, kiwis are popular worldwide due to their unique and gorgeous flavor.
But since they are a fruit, the short answer to whether they go bad is yes, they do. Read on for tips on how to spot signs of spoilage and how to store kiwis.
What Are The Telltale Signs A Kiwi Has Gone Bad?
While it’s never great seeing something go off, luckily, the signs aren’t subtle. Simply check if your kiwi has gone bad as you would any other fruit or vegetable.
First, it’s always a good idea to use your nose to test whether a kiwi is no longer edible. Good kiwis smell almost like citrus, but you’ll know for sure it has gone bad if it smells acidic.
The texture will also have changed. If you apply gentle pressure to the kiwi and it feels more squidgy than usual, this means it is time to throw it out. On the outside, the furry skin will change from plump and firm to slightly wrinkly.
Inside, the actual fruit might have turned to mush and just won’t feel good on your tongue if you do try it. Also, the color may darken. It gets better, though: if it has only darkened on the skin, you may be able to get away with cutting off the darkened bit and eating the rest.
As ever, look out for the appearance of mold, as this is a clear indication it needs to be discarded.
How Long Do Kiwis Last?
The shelf life of kiwis is dependent on how long they were stored in the supermarket before they were purchased. An unripe kiwi may therefore take any time between 2–7 days to ripen.
Once fully ripened, kiwis will last for 3–6 days if stored at room temperature, or, if kept refrigerated, may even stretch for as long as four weeks.
How To Store Kiwis
How you store unripe kiwis depends on whether you can’t wait to eat them or want to prolong their shelf life in order to consume them sometime later. If it’s the former, leave them at room temperature out of direct sunlight, perhaps in a fruit bowl or on the counter. If it’s the latter, keep your kiwis refrigerated.
Remember that an unripe kiwi is firm to the touch, and the skin may be greener. If you try to eat it when it’s not ready, the taste won’t be as sweet, and the texture won’t be soft. But the good news is there’s a little tip for speeding up the ripening process:
- Place the kiwi into a small plastic bag or container.
- Pair it up with a fruit that produces ethylene gas, like a banana or an apple.
- Leave the bag or container ventilated, keep it at room temperature, and within 1–2 days, the kiwi will have ripened.
For ripe kiwis, again, storage depends on how soon you’ll eat them. If you plan on consuming them within a few days, simply leaving them stored at room temperature is ideal. If you want them to last longer, refrigerate them.
Don’t leave a ripe kiwi near an ethylene-producing fruit, as it will only continue to mature quickly, meaning you might miss its prime!
Lastly, if the kiwis are overripe, there is no point refrigerating them as you cannot reverse time. Once past the ripening stage, a kiwi will most likely have gone off and, therefore, shouldn’t be eaten.
The Round-Up On Kiwis
In summary, here’s what you need to know about kiwis:
- Your kiwi has gone bad if it’s soft to the touch, if it smells acidic, or if there’s visible mold.
- Kiwis take 2-7 days to fully ripen. Then, they’ll last anywhere from 3 days to 4 weeks, depending on if you store them at room temperature or in the refrigerator.
- Whether you store kiwis at room temperature or the refrigerator is largely dependent on whether you want your kiwis to ripen quickly (at warmer temperatures) or slowly.