This citrus is widely known today and many people think that it is almost the same as lemon. Well, even though its name does mean “lemon”, both fruits are genetically different.
We use lime for making lemonades, juices, and for flavoring various dishes and bakery. Naturally, sooner or later a question is asked: how long do limes stay good?
Well, let’s find it out!
Shelf Life Of Limes
Lime can stay in a dry and cool place for up to 2 weeks, an optimal storage temperature is 41-48.2 °F. At room temperature, lime goes bad faster and will be unusable in a 1 week. The lime juice can be stored in an ice cube tray in a freezer for 4 to 12 months.
Lime Health Benefits. Why We Shall Eat This Fruit
These small and round green-colored citruses have a noticeably more sour taste with significant bitter notes. Despite their size, limes can be called a “powerhouse” of different elements useful to our health.
- Limes are higher in vitamin C than lemons providing us with more than twenty percent of its daily dose needed
- They are low in fat and calories
- Lime is a great source of antioxidants which protect our body cells from ruination
- Due to the high content of vitamin C, limes contribute greatly to boosting our immune system
- Studies have suggested that increasing consumption of plant foods like limes decreases the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and overall mortality ( by Natalie Olsen, R.D., L.D., ACSM EP-C from Medical News Today)
- Consuming limes regularly will improve the state of the skin
- Limes are good protectors from heart diseases, atherosclerosis, and high blood pressure
- Lime flesh and juice prevents the formation of kidney stones
- In addition, limes allow our body to absorb iron much better which prevents anemia
- And finally, limes have been proved to be a good preventive method from certain kinds of cancer
Despite all these useful traits, people are often worried about the possible side effects of consuming limes. Are limes bad for you? Yes, if you are allergic to other citruses.
Also, too intensive consumption of limes may cause acid reflux or other unpleasant states like nausea since this fruit is high in citric acid.
For this reason, limes are not recommended to those who suffer from any stomach diseases. Moreover, eating too many limes daily will ruin the teeth enamel, so be careful. We would advise to add several slices of lime to the bottle of water and drink it – like this, the body will get the necessary amount of vitamins and the influence of acids will be less harmful.
How Long Are Limes Good For?
Of course, storing limes is a great point of concern for many housewives. These citruses tend to harden if being stored improperly and once they become like this, they are impossible to use anymore.
To protect limes from spoilage and to save your time and money, let’s refresh the basic points regarding the lime shelf life.
- Limes that are going to be used within a week can be left on the countertop or placed in a pantry
- For longer storage, refrigerate the citruses to prevent the process of spoiling
- Always buy fresh limes that are slightly hard to the touch
How long do limes last in the fridge?
Normally, if they were bought fresh and packed properly, the citruses will remain consumable for nearly a month.
Do Limes Go Bad?
Like any fresh fruits, limes tend to spoil if we keep them under improper conditions.
How to tell if limes are bad?
There are several major signs that will tell about it.
- Citruses become soft to the touch
- Their skin may have the signs of discoloration
- If you notice any brown color on the lime, it also tells that the fruit is spoiled
- Rotten limes start drying out from the inside when the first external symptoms appear
Can a bad lime make you sick?
Well, some side effects like nausea or general weakness are possible, especially if one has a stomach that is weak or sensitive to the bad food. However, no really nasty aftermath is possible unless you eat many limes at a time which is hardly possible.
What To Do With Limes Going Bad?
Is it possible to still use limes that have just started spoiling? We all know that discarding products hurts our heart! That’s why we always try to find any use for the foodstuff that is not completely rotten.
Well, as for limes, try one of the following solutions:
- Use old lime for cleaning your garbage disposal! Cut them in quarters and shove down the disposal, then run hot water and start the blades – you’ll see, in a minute it will be just like new again!
- Hard limes can serve for scaring away ants. Puree several peels in 200 ml of water and pulverize all over the yard.
- Use slightly off limes for cleaning the microwave. Put the lime slices into a glass of water and run in the microwave for 3-4 min. Then wipe down the insides.
- Old limes cut in halves with some salt added are great to clean the cutting boards.
How to Store Limes?
It’s all good to know how we can use old limes but still, it would be better to keep limes fresh longer to enjoy the citruses to the full.
To achieve that, take into account the major lime storage tips. They are simple but extremely effective!
- Always wash limes before storing them
- Should limes be refrigerated, avoid placing the citruses to the fridge uncovered since they will most likely start drying pretty soon
- Keep limes in a vegetable drawer
- Pack limes in zip-lock packets since they protect the fruit from dehydration best of all
When following these steps, you’ll manage to extend their lifespan to six weeks.
Always check the citruses for any signs or spoiling regularly, like this, it will be simpler to prevent the complete rotting.
Drying Limes. How And What For?
Normally, people tend to preserve fruits and keep them fresh and juicy to the longest. Why would someone dry them for purpose?! Well, that’s a reasonable inquiry since we usually don’t dry fresh foodstuffs intentionally.
But let’s give it a take and imagine how dry citruses and limes, in particular, can be used.
In this part of the article, we gathered all the possible information on this topic so that it could be handy for everyone who uses these green and super sour fruits more or less regularly.
- The tradition of drying limes came from Oman where this citrus is used as a spice when turning completely juiceless.
It is mostly dried because of the constant contact with the sun for a long time which makes all the liquid content of the fruit dry out.
- Dried limes can be used whole, sliced in wheels, or ground.
- When the fruit dries out completely, its taste changes a bit. It still remains citrusy but with the addition of smoky and partly earthy notes. Sometimes, a slight bitterness can be noticed.
- As for the use, traditionally dried limes are used for adding sour taste to dishes, as well as for flavoring stews and soups in Persian cuisine. This seasoning is common for fish dishes and all sorts of stuffing, too.
- In Iraq, people would give dry lime tea as a cure for indigestion, upset stomach, diarrhea, and nausea.
- Dry lime can be used not only for medical purposes. Cocktail garnish, an ingredient for citrus salt for margaritas, water, and food flavorer – so many options can be found!
Since this citrus can be so widely used when dry, why not learn how to dehydrate it for yourself?
If you have a dehydrator with plastic trays, it will make the whole process simpler.
If not, well, then use an oven, and remember what to do to get perfectly dries lime wheels.
- Wash the limes and dry them
- Slice them into ¼ inch wheels
- Preheat the oven to 200F
- Grab a cooling rack and spread lime wheels in one layer over the sheet pan
- Leave limes dry inside the oven for 3-4 hours
That’s all! After the lime wheels are ready and cooled down, transfer them to the airtight plastic bag or tank and stock.
It is not recommended to keep dry limes (and other fruits) in a paper or cloth bag since the wheels may turn bad sooner due to oxidizing.
Of course, you could try a traditional sun-drying method but it requires certain skills so we’d recommend not risk and use checked methods instead.
We do hope that this article was handy and gave you lots of handy information.
Frequently Asked Questions
And of course, to provide you with even more useful information and make a lime-storing guru, we’ve prepared several widespread questions that one shall know anyway.
- Does lime juice go bad?
Lime juice expiration date hangs upon the type of juice. If it’s a store-purchased pasteurized one, it will last for several months. A homemade drink will remain drinkable for several weeks.
- How long do cut limes last?
Sliced of cut in halves, limes will keep their freshness for a maximum of four days.
- Why do limes get hard?
A lime becomes hard because of dehydration which is often caused by improper storage (e.g. when the fruit is exposed to air).