How to Store Mandarins and Clementines (Peeled, Juice and +)

Mandarins are citrus fruit with a sweet and somewhat acidic taste, which you usually eat raw; however, there are several delicious recipes like juices, pies, cakes, and so on. So if you want to use them for a long time, I will teach you how to store mandarin oranges correctly.

You can store mandarins at room temperature for about ten days, but if you place them in the fridge, they will stay for 2 or 3 weeks, and in the freezer, they will last about 10 or 12 months. You can also prepare syrup, jam, or dehydrate them for long-term storage.

Store Mandarins

Just read on to know the correct way to preserve mandarins.

Table of Contents

How to select good mandarin oranges

The first thing you should keep in mind when buying mandarins is that they look good, which means that the peel should not have tears, stains, or discolorations.

Another critical factor to take into account is their weight. Juicy mandarins are heavy for their size; they should also be firm but slightly malleable.

If the mandarins have a uniform orange color, they are at their point of maturation and are perfect for eating.

Do not buy mandarins with brown, black, or white spots, and stay away from those that are very dry and do not weigh anything. Nor should you purchase viscous mandarins, or those you can drill applying a super low pressure.

How to store mandarins at room temperature

Once you buy the mandarins, ideally, you should leave them in their plastic mesh or put them inside a paper bag, do not store them in airtight containers; otherwise, they will quickly rot due to lack of oxygen.

You can dry them with a clean paper towel or kitchen cloth if they are somewhat damp. Also, you can place the mandarins in a basket and cover them with a clean kitchen towel. Put this basket in a dark, cool, moisture-free place.

Mandarins will keep for ten days at room temperature, but if they are very ripe, they will last about five days. [1]

How to keep mandarins oranges in the fridge

A better way to preserve mandarins, especially if they are ripe or you peeled them, is to store them inside the fridge as follows:

  • Step 1: Place the mandarins in a bag. 

The unpeeled mandarin needs to continue breathing to stay in good condition, so choose to place them in a paper bag or directly store them in the drawer or compartment for vegetables.

But if you wholly chopped or peeled the mandarine or extracted its segments, it is best to put them in an airtight container or bag.

  • Step 2: Write down the storage date of the mandarins.

Write the date of storage of the mandarin with a marker on the bag or container. However, you can also write down on a label that you will stick to the bag or container.

  • Step 3: Store the mandarins in the refrigerator.

Put the unpeeled mandarins inside the vegetable drawer or in a cool place. This way, you can keep the mandarins inside the fridge for 2 to 3 weeks. [2]

For peeled mandarins, place them in the coldest area, so they will last a week refrigerated.

How to freeze mandarins

Can you freeze mandarins? Yes, you can, but you should consider that you will not be able to use them as fresh ones since they will be too soft. But if you want to freeze them to use in smoothies or extract their juice, it is a good option.

To freeze the mandarines, follow the subsequent guidelines:

  • Step 1: Wash the mandarins.

Before peeling them, I advise you to wash them with enough water and rub their shells well to remove any dirt. 

  • Step 2: Peel and divide into segments.

Remove the peel and divide the mandarin into segments, although you can also leave it whole without the peel.

  • Step 3: Perform first freezing.

Place the segments or peeled mandarins on a tray with waxed paper or parchment, and then put them in the freezer for two or four hours or until they are completely frozen.

  • Step 4: Bag the mandarin.

Place the segments inside an airtight bag to freeze.

  • Step 5: Put the storage date of the mandarins.

Write with a marker the date of storage of the mandarins.

  • Step 6: Save the mandarin in the freezer.

This way, you can freeze these mandarins for 10 to 12 months. Then, you can use the frozen mandarins in juices or smoothies, although if you want to thaw it to extract its juice, pass it to the fridge and leave it there for at least 12 hours.

How to preserve mandarin juice

Mandarin juice is mouthwatering and in case you have leftovers, leave it in a jar with a lid and preferably without ice, away from foods that emit a pungent smell.

This way, you will keep the mandarin juice inside the refrigerator for 5 to 7 days.

You can also freeze the mandarin juice. Transfer it to a bag with good airtight sealing but without filling it, letting enough room for the liquid to expand.

Or fill an ice cube tray with the juice and pass it to a bag suitable for freezing as soon as it is frozen.

You can freeze Mandarin juice for 10 or 12 months. Remember to write the storage date on the bag.

How to preserve mandarins in syrup

Syrup is a technique you can apply to many fruits, and mandarins are no exception. Based on the principles of osmosis, you can preserve mandarins for an extended period, adding flavor but increasing their sugar content.

To prepare the mandarin syrup, follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Clean the mandarins.

Before you remove the shells, wash them with plenty of water, rubbing them well to remove all the dirt.

  • Step 2: Peel and divide into segments.

Remove the peel and divide the mandarin into segments, but if it is tiny, you can leave it whole. In any case, remove as much white membrane as possible.

  • Step 3: Prepare the syrup. 

For the syrup, you need one part sugar for two of water. Bring to the stove until the sugar dissolves completely.

  • Step 4: Fill the jars with mandarin.

Use glass jars with an airtight or screw lid to place the mandarins in the syrup.

You must have sterilized the jars before (just put the jar and its lid in a pot with boiling water for 10 minutes), and it must be completely dry before filling it.

Do not fill the bottle; leave one finger gap. Clean the area where the lid goes well before closing.

  • Step 5: Vacuum seal the jars.

Put the jar(s) with mandarin inside a large pot but at the bottom. First, place a towel or rack that prevents the container from constantly colliding with the pot, and arrange them far enough apart so that they do not collide with each other either.

Add water until they are covered and turn on the stove to the maximum until it starts to boil. At that time, lower the heat and let it cook for 20 or 30 minutes. Then, turn off the kitchen and let the water cool before taking out the jars.

  • Step 6: Take out the jars and let them stand.

Once cool, remove the jars with tweezers, and place them on the table or countertop, but do not let the sun hit them. The jars will still be hot, so let them sit and dry completely for about 12 hours.

  • Step 7: Write the storage date of the mandarin.

Write the storage date and the name’s product on a label, then stick it to the jar. Or write the storage date on the jar’s lid with a marker.

  • Step 8: Store the mandarins in syrup.

The bottle sealed with mandarins in syrup can be left at room temperature for 9 to 12 months in a dark, cool, and dry place. But if the weather exceeds 25°C (77°F) or you open the jar, it is best to store it in the fridge.

The jar with unopened mandarins in syrup will stay about 12 or 18 months inside the refrigerator, while open will only last 2 to 3 months.

How to preserve mandarin jam

Another alternative that could serve you to take advantage of mandarins, in addition to keeping them for a long time, is to make a jam with them.

I can add the recipe if you want, but there are many mandarin jam recipes out there.

Anyways, after you get the jam, you need to store it as follows:

  • Step 1: Vacuum seal the jars with jam.

In a large, tall pot with a thick bottom, arrange the jars on a tea towel, so they do not collide with each other or with the pot itself.

Add water to cover the jars, turn on the kitchen over high heat until it begins to boil, and lower it a little. Boil for 20 or 30 minutes to make the sealing by pressure. 

After that, turn off the heat and wait until the water cools a little to remove the jars.

  • Step 2: Take out the jars.

If you put the jars with the mandarin jam and put it on a table or countertop for 12 hours, make sure it does not spoil the sunlight. 

  • Step 3: Write the storage date.

Write on a label the date of preparation of the mandarin jam and attach it to the jar.

  • Step 4: Save the mandarin jam.

You can put the jar or jars in your pantry if the weather is not up to 25°C (77°C) and the container remains sealed. Although the mandarin jam can last about 10 or 12 months at room temperature, it will only last about 3 or 4 months once opened.

If the weather exceeds 25°C, it is best to refrigerate the sealed mandarin jam for 12 to 18 months, while opening will last about six months.

You can also freeze the mandarin jam, pass it to an airtight bag or container suitable for freezing, and keep it for 2 to 5 years.

How to dehydrate mandarins

In case you didn’t know, mandarins can also be dehydrated, and it is a trendy snack for children since they are as sweet as candy. To dehydrate the mandarins, you must:

  • Step 1: Clean the mandarins.

Before removing the shells, wash them with plenty of water, rubbing them well to remove all the dirt. 

  • Step 2: Peel and divide into segments.

Remove the peel and divide the mandarin into segments. Then sprinkle the segments with lemon juice.

  • Step 3: Dehydrate the mandarins.

If you are going to use your oven, preheat it to the lowest temperature (about 90°C), then distribute the mandarin segments on a tray with parchment paper, and put them next to each other without stacking them or putting them too close together. Dehydrate for about six or eight hours.

If you have a food dehydrator, set the temperature to about 50°C (120°F). Arrange the mandarin segments next to each other, leaving a little space between them, and let them dry for 10 or 12 hours, and sometimes it can take about 15 hours.

The mandarins will be ready when they flatten a little and wrinkle. Wait for them to cool down before storing them.

  • Step 4: Transfer to an airtight container.

When the mandarins are no longer hot, transfer them to an airtight container, preferably glass, since it preserves food better but still works with a plastic one and even an airtight bag.

  • Step 5: Write the storage date of the mandarin.

Write down the date with a marker over the container or bag.

  • Step 6: Save the dehydrated mandarin.

Place dehydrated mandarins in a place that stays dark, dry, and cool. This way, the dehydrated mandarin can last a year at room temperature.

And if you want them to last longer, store them in the freezer (using a bag suitable to be in the freezer) for 2 to 5 years.

If some segments have not been entirely dehydrated, you can place them in an airtight bag or container and store them in the fridge for 2 or 3 weeks.

How do you know if the mandarins got bad?

Mandarins are spoiled if they have any of these characteristics:

  • Stink.
  • Rare taste.
  • Mold.
  • Viscous and extremely soft.
  • White spots.
  • Low weight.

In case of presenting any of these characteristics, the best thing you can do is throw the mandarin in the trash so that you do not end up with stomach pain or intoxication. 

Why do mandarins spoil?

Mandarins are fruits that continue to ripen after being harvested. This maturation process is also that of decomposition since it is not fed from the tree where it was and will end up rotting.

Some processes slow down this decomposition, but if it is not stored correctly, the mandarin will spoil in a brief time

Moisture and heat will cause the mandarin to quickly develop mold, mildew, or some other bacteria.

How long do mandarins last?

Mandarins at room temperature10 days
Very ripe mandarins at room temperature5 days
Mandarins in the fridge2 – 3 weeks
Chopped or peeled mandarins in the fridge1 week
Chilled mandarin juice5 – 7 days
Frozen mandarin juice10 – 12 months
Mandarins in syrup at room temperature (sealed)9 – 12 months
Mandarins in syrup in the fridge (sealed)12 – 18 months
Mandarins in syrup in the fridge (opened)2 – 3 months
Mandarins jam at room temperature (sealed)10 – 12 months
Mandarins jam at room temperature (opened)3 – 4 months
Mandarins jam in the fridge (sealed)12 – 18 months
Mandarins jam in the fridge (opened)6 months
Frozen mandarin jam2 – 5 years
Dehydrated mandarin at room temperature1 year
Dehydrated mandarin in the freezer2 – 5 years
Mandarin partially dehydrated and refrigerated3 – 4 weeks

What is the best way to preserve mandarins?

Mandarins are excellently preserved inside the fridgeso you could say this is the best way to keep them. You can store them at room temperature in a dark place if they lack ripening.

The mandarin can be frozen without the peel for a long time. Although they do not remain as if they were fresh, you can use them in juices.

Other storage alternatives consist of preserving the mandarins in syrup, which helps you keep them for a long time, or you could also prepare a jam with them.

A healthier option is to dehydrate the mandarins since it does not use as much sugar and is a long-term storage form.

Check the following post. I have more secrets about food storage to share with you.



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