How Long Do Carrots Last In The Fridge

Carrots are among the most versatile root veggies. They come in a range of colors, including orange, red, yellow, and more. They also have a surprisingly long shelf life compared to other vegetables.

But have you ever wondered, “How long do carrots last in the fridge before they start to lose their crunch and flavor?”

Similar to other produce vegetables, carrots are prone to spoilage if not kept properly in the fridge. In general, carrots last for up to a month in the refrigerator. 

Too often, many people leave the whole bag of carrots in their kitchen cupboards. Nonetheless, they have no idea where to put them or how to store them in the refrigerator.

We know carrots don't usually come with an expiration date label on them. Despite this, you probably know the fact that carrots can go bad if they are not properly stored. 

To avoid letting that happen, here's our guide to help you learn: “How long do carrots last in the fridge?” Also, learn how to properly keep them fresh for longer. Read on! 

Why Do Carrots Go Bad? 

Every food has its shelf life—be it a vegetable, a pack of pickles, or mayo. Regardless, one must be aware of why and how they spoil.

Knowing this will make sense when you start learning how long to refrigerate certain produce and foods to maintain their freshness. Now, we are talking about carrots here. 

One possible reason many vegetables and fruits spoil is the gas they produce as they mature. Like other produce, carrots emit a gas known as ethylene as they ripen.

In some cases, they might release this gas rapidly. As a result, it's important to understand how to store carrots to minimize this emission.

How Long Do Carrots Generally Last?

First up, let's understand how long you can keep carrots outside the fridge.  

The answer is 3 – 5 days. You can store fresh carrots in the pantry, on the counter, or even in a root cellar, but refrigeration is always the best option. But you need to be mindful of 2 things: 

First things first—keep them away from other vegetables and fruits like potatoes, onions, or apples. That's because carrots generate ethylene gas when they mature. This gas causes the carrot to rot and ripen quickly. Not just carrots, but the surrounding vegetables will begin to rot, too! 

Secondly, never store them in a plastic bag. This is a common mistake that a lot of people make. The reason is obvious: the moisture will start to collect inside the bag and lead to the formation of molds. And you'll have no option but to throw the carrots. 

Now, back to our main question. 

How Long Do Carrots Last In The Fridge?

Well, the exact answer to this question depends on what form they're in and how you store them. 

But in general, raw and unpeeled carrots can last between 3 to 4 weeks in the refrigerator. Additionally, peeled or cut carrots can stay fresh for up to 2 to 3 weeks. 

What about baby carrots? Even though they may look cute and bite-sized, baby carrots may only last for about a week in the fridge. 

You may also store cooked carrots this way if you have any leftovers. Make sure they are utilized within three to five days after placing them in an airtight container.

Here's the breakdown:

Forms of Carrots  Shelf-life 
 Whole carrots  3-4 weeks
 Cut and peeled carrots  2-3 weeks
 Cooked carrots  3-5 days 
 Baby carrots  2-3 weeks 
 Carrots submerged in water  Up to 4 weeks 
 Carrots stored in an airtight container in the fridge  Up to 3 weeks
 Carrots stored in freezer  Up to 3 months 

How Long Do Cooked Carrots Last In The Fridge? 

Many people believe refrigerating cooked vegetables, like carrots, can increase their shelf life. Sure, the heat can kill the germs that may infest the carrots, but here’s the truth. 

Bacteria grow quickly in high temperatures, particularly in the danger zone, i.e., between 40 °F and 140 °F. That said, you can keep the carrots in the fridge only for up to 3-4 days. After 4 days, they go bad and need to be discarded. 

Can You Freeze Carrots?

Sometimes, you may want to chuck your raw carrots into the freezer instead of the fridge. Maybe you've got more carrots left and don't want to waste them. In that case, freezing is the best option. 

But to lock in and preserve flavor, color, and nutritional value, it's important to blanch them first. Blanching slows down the enzymatic action that causes vegetables to decay and loses their best qualities, including taste and nutritional value. So, carrots can be frozen for up to 3 months. 

Note that the freezer time is for best quality only – carrots that have been kept constantly frozen at 0° F will stay safe indefinitely.

How To Store Carrots In The Freezer?

Here's how you should freeze your carrots: 

i) Wash and peel off the carrots first, and cut them into desired shapes and sizes. 

ii) Now cook the chopped carrots in boiling water for 3 to 5 minutes. Do not boil for more than that. 

iii) Thoroughly drain them, then immediately submerge them in cold water to stop cooking. 

iv) Drain them again, then use a fresh kitchen towel to pat dry. 

v) After it dries, place it on a baking sheet lined with a parchment-lined tray and keep it in the freezer. 

vi) Once frozen for around 2 hours, transfer the tray to an airtight container or a freezer bag.

vii) Label the bag with a date as a reminder, and store it in the freezer. 

You can store carrots for up to three months after blanching and opening them; use them directly out of the freezer for optimal texture. 

Should You Thaw Carrots After Freezing? 

Carrots don't need to be thawed, just like other frozen veggies, and cooking them straight from the freezer will actually make things easier. However, there are a few ways to defrost them if you really want to:

  • Transferring it to the fridge: All you have to do is take out the frozen carrots and put them in the refrigerator overnight. This is the best way to thaw. 
  • Keeping in cold water: If you're in a hurry and want to thaw the bag of frozen carrots quickly, submerge it in a bowl of cold water. Replace the water every half an hour until it has fully thawed. 

Never keep the cooked carrots in an environment hotter than 40 degrees Fahrenheit for longer than two hours. This is due to the increased possibility that carrots will become a haven for bacteria. That means you’re allowing more bacteria to grow in those carrots. 

But, if you are not yet ready to eat or use them, put them back in the fridge. 

How Do You Tell If Carrots Have Gone Bad?

Sometimes, even with proper storage and refrigeration, carrots can spoil. That's why before eating or using the carrots, you should check if they are suitable for consumption.

Always look for signs that can tell the difference between good and bad carrots. Otherwise, if you eat spoiled carrots, they can harbor bacteria that can be harmful to your body and may lead to food poisoning

Here are the signs to tell if carrots have gone bad: 

Look/Appearance: Fresh carrots usually are orange and spotless. In some cases, you'll notice visible dark molds growing on certain spots of carrots. If you look closely, they may also become rubbery or limp. This shows that the carrots have been spoiled. 

Smell: The next thing you must notice is its smell. Fresh carrots usually don't have any smell. If the carrot gives off a foul or sour odor, it's a sign of bacterial growth. 

Texture: Normally, fresh carrots have a firm and crunchy texture. However, the texture may turn slimy, soft, or mushy. 

Note: If you notice white blush or spots on carrots, it shows that they are drying out (or dehydrated) and need to be washed with water. So they are safe to eat, but only if you rinse them well with water. 

How To Store Carrots Properly? 

How you store them can actually make a difference. All carrots must be stored in an airtight container or bag, no matter if they are raw, peeled, unpeeled, sliced, or cooked. 

Here's a step-by-step guide to how to store carrots in the fridge: 

Step 1: First, cut the carrots into desired shapes and sizes. 

Step 2: Wash and peel them if you like, but it is not necessarily required.

Step 3: Fill an airtight container with cold water, followed by the chopped carrots. Make sure it's entirely covered with water. 

Step 4:  If you don't have any plan to eat the carrots for a few days, replace the water regularly to prevent bacterial growth. Remember to rinse and change the water every 4-5 days. 

Step 5: Rinse the carrots again just before eating to remove any bacteria that may have grown. 

Step 6: If you don’t have any airtight containers in your home, you can use a zip-lock bag. Simply wrap the carrots in a paper towel and seal the bag. 

The storage method applies to all forms of carrots, whether it's cut, sliced, whole, or baby carrots. 

Additional Tips To Consider When Storing Carrots In The Fridge

First, keep in mind that there’s no magic to increase its shelf life. It’s all about science. Things like temperature and the surrounding environment are all that matter. Here are additional tips you should be aware of when storing carrots to keep them fresh for longer: 

  1. Carrots should not be stored near food or fruits that release ethylene gas, such as ripe bananas, pears, or apples. Carrots lose their freshness much faster when they are ethylene-filled.
  2. Store the unpeeled and whole carrots in a cool, dry environment to maintain freshness. 
  3. Avoid washing carrots immediately after buying. Let them dry and cure slightly in an airy environment. The excess water can worsen the spoilage. In fact, a study found that storing carrots unwashed is the best way to extend their shelf life.
  4. Always cut off the carrot greens and store them in a separate container. That's because carrot greens remove moisture from the roots and lead to decay.
  5. When buying carrots from grocery stores, look for carrots that are not bruised, overripe, or “dehydrated.” Get only a sufficient amount of carrots to avoid wastage.

Final Words

So there you go! We explained everything about carrot's shelf-life and discovered, “How long do carrots last in the fridge?” When properly stored, raw carrots can stay fresh for about 3 to 4 weeks (i.e., up to a month), while fresh-cut or peeled carrots may last for up to 3 weeks. 

Carrots are among the healthiest vegetables, but they are highly prone to bacteria and toxins, which can be harmful to human health. From a food safety perspective, you should know how to handle them well.

So, store them correctly in an airtight container filled with water to keep them fresh for as long as possible. When in doubt, throw them out without a second thought!


1. How do you know if carrots have gone bad? 

Ans: If your carrots are soft, slimy, discolored, or show signs of mold, they have gone bad and must be thrown out. 

2. How do you store fresh-cut carrots? 

Ans: Cut carrots into medium-sized shapes and keep them in an airtight container. Cover the carrots with water, close the lid tightly, and store them in the refrigerator. 

3. Can you freeze raw carrots?

Ans: Yes, you can freeze raw carrots, but with proper storage. Before freezing, it's advisable to blanch them as they have a high water content. 

4. Why do my carrots go soft in the fridge?

Ans: Carrots lose moisture and may go soft because they're losing too much water. They're about 80 to 95% water, after all. 

5. Can carrots last 3 weeks in the fridge?

Ans: Raw carrots can usually stay fresh for around 3-4 weeks when stored properly. If they are already chopped or sliced, they can last for three weeks max in the fridge. 

6. Is it better to store carrots washed or unwashed?

Ans: It is actually recommended to store the carrots unwashed to keep them fresh for longer. This lets beneficial bacteria stay intact on the root surface, where they fight against harmful bacteria. 

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Oliver Nelson

Oliver Nelson is a New York based Health Specialist Writer who completed his graduation from Syracuse University back in 2015. His writings were published in the top Healthcare brands in the United States.

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