We are always told not to buy canned food that are dented. Did you heed this advice? Keeping dented cans is bad, as tiny cracks can form along the dents, paving the way for contamination and spoilage. Discard them immediately! Here are three other common mistakes you might be making:

  1. Storing leafy greens in plastic bags. This traps moisture and causes the leaves to turn soggy quickly. Instead, separate the leaves, and wash and dry them thoroughly first. Then, arrange the leaves on a row of paper towels, and roll them up to form a tight bundle. Store the bundle in a large ziplock bag; squeeze the air out before sealing the bag.
  2. Keeping dry goods in their original packaging. This may invite weevils or cause mustiness. The best way to keep grains, pasta, cereals and flour fresh longer, is to store them in air tight glass containers.
  3. Storing food at the wrong temperature. Oils should be stored away from heat – don’t arrange your bottles of olive or coconut oil next to the stovetop – and preferably in the cupboard, out of direct light. Delicate oils like sesame can be refrigerated, though. If you want your bananas, peaches, pears and avocados to ripen, store them at room temperature – so just leave them on the kitchen counter – instead of refrigerating them.

This story was originally published in Simply Her October 2015.