5 Ways to Store Onion and Tomato for a Week

Losing time in chopping that big batch of onion and tomatoes for dinner? Are you tired of shedding onion tears every morning in the kitchen? Here are a few quick onion and tomato storage ideas to ease your life.

Onion and tomatoes are common ingredients used in many international cuisines including Mexican, Malaysian, Bangladesh, Sri Lankan, Brazilian, Jamaican, Moroccan, Spanish and Indonesian. In Indian Cuisine, plenty of North and South Indian dishes depend on these vegetables as they lay the foundation.

We use onion and tomatoes to make at least one or two dishes per week. Chopping these becomes a major task in everyone’s life and data shows that a woman spends an average of 6 hours in the kitchen every day. As prepping these two vegetables is a time-consuming task, I am here to give you simple and easy tips to store onion and tomatoes in the best way for an entire week.

  1. Chop

The simplest way to store onions and tomatoes for a week is by chopping or dicing them into pieces.

How to Do:

Wash and peel the skin of onions and dice them using a knife or a food processor.

Wash the tomatoes in vinegar and water solution and pat them dry. Remove the eye of the tomatoes and dice them with the help of a knife or chopper.

How to store onions
Chopped onions

How to Store:

Place diced onions in a clear acrylic or glass container with an air-tight lid. Keep the box on the top or middle shelf of the refrigerator. These can last for 2-3 days and after this period, it loses its crispness.

Place diced tomatoes in an acrylic or glass container with an air-tight lid. Store the box on the top shelf of the refrigerator. Since it has moisture and acidity, it keeps good for a week.

Recipes to Use:

For the first two days, diced onions work great for salads, tempering, and fries. After that, you can use it to make bulk curries, sauces, and meat dishes.

Diced tomatoes are best for dishes such as chutneys, dips, salsa, salad, curries, sauces, chile, and rice varieties.

2. Puree

Pureed vegetables can be a handy ingredient for people making curries in bulk.

How to Do:

Peel the skin, slice them into larger pieces, and blend them in a food processor or a mixer grinder.

Boil tomatoes in water for 10 mins; until the skin cracks, cool and peel the skin. Pulse the peeled tomatoes in a blender to puree it.

How to Store:

Pour the pureed mixtures into an acrylic or glass container with an air-tight lid. Store this container on the middle shelf of the refrigerator.

Recipes to Use:

Pureed onions work great for meat dishes, North Indian curries with legumes, vegetables, and lentils. Roast the paste in oil first to enhance the taste of the dish.

How to store tomato
Tomato Puree

Pureed tomatoes work great for sauces, dal, curries, and stir-fries. You can make a variety of rice, pilaf, meat, and seafood dishes.

  1. Sauté

Onion and tomato mixture works best for making instant meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This takes time to prepare but lasts for longer days.

How to Do:

Add chopped onions and tomatoes together in a large saucepan by adding a tsp of oil, salt, and sugar. You can add herbs and spices such as green chili, garlic, chili powder, and curry leaves. Keep stirring it until the moisture evaporates and thickens down. You can make this in bulk.

onion tomato masala
Onion Tomato Masala

How to Store:

You can store this mixture in an air-tight glass or acrylic container or a zip-lock bag. For long-term storage, freeze the mixture in portions and use it as needed.

Recipes to Use:

The mixture works best as a base for vegetable and legume gravies, curries, and sauces. You can use this as a topping, spread, or dip for roti, chips, nachos, bread, buns, and savory crepes. This works great for chicken and red meat gravies.

  1. Brown/ Charred

We commonly use browned onions and tomatoes in meat dishes in India. They add a rich flavor, taste, and aroma to the slow-cooked recipes in the region.

How to Do:

Peel the onions, slice them and fry these in hot oil. You can either shallow fry or deep fry based on your needs.

Slice the tomatoes and shallow fry them in hot oil until it becomes charred, grilled or browned. You can see brown marks on the softened tomatoes.

Alternatively, you can char onions and tomatoes on a skillet, grill pan, or baked in the oven to soften them. Puree them in a blender.

 How to Store:

You can store fried brown onions in a dry container for weeks. You must store brown onion paste in an air-tight glass or acrylic container or a zip-lock bag for retaining its freshness. This stays good for 15-30 days in the bottom shelf of the refrigerator.

You can consume whole grilled tomatoes or store browned tomato paste in an air-tight glass or acrylic container.

Recipes to Use:

Fried onions are best for garnishing rice varieties. Brown onion paste is the secret ingredient for making restaurant-quality biryani, mutton curries, chicken gravies, and other meat dishes in India.

Grilled tomatoes can be a great side dish for broiled fish, chicken, and other seafood. The paste makes a great sauce for as pasta, pizza, and roti sauce by seasoning it with mixed herbs, salt, olive oil, and garlic powder.

  1. Peeled

If you aren’t willing to take an extra step to prep the onion and tomatoes, you can follow this method.

How to Do:

Take a knife, peel the skin of onions, and remove the eye of the tomatoes. Wash in vinegar water and pat dry.

How to Store:

Place peeled onions in a zip-lock bag. Make sure you remove the air from the bag and vacuum seal it for extending its shelf life.

Place the tomatoes in a zip-lock bag and follow the same procedure to seal it. These can last for 5 days at the max. Place the bag on the top shelf or in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator.

Freeze whole tomatoes without the eye in a zip-lock bag for long-term storage.

How to freeze tomato
Freeze tomatoes in a Ziplock bag

Recipes to Use:

You can use it for anything you wish as they are in their original form.

Additional Tips:

  • Have a variety of prepped onion and tomatoes in the fridge as you can rotate it the whole week.
  • For best results, use glass or acrylic containers with air-tight lids. And use zip-lock bags for the above preparations.
  • Use chopped, pureed, and peeled vegetables at the start of the week as the browned mixture can last longer.
  • Store the raw vegetable mixtures in the top-most shelf of the fridge to keep its freshness.

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