How to Store Rosemary (Fresh or Dried) (Fridge or Freezer)

Rosemary is an herb that, in addition to being used as natural medicine, is used in the kitchen for the excellent taste and smell it brings to dishes. Unfortunately, it rots fast if you manipulate it incorrectly when it is fresh, being essential to know how to store rosemary at room temperature, fridge, or wherever you want to keep it.

You can store rosemary at room temperature for a year if it is dry. On the other hand, you should store fresh rosemary in the fridge for 1 to 2 weeks or frozen for 4 to 6 months.

Store Rosemary

You just have to read on to know the methods to preserve rosemary.

How to store rosemary at room temperature?

Rosemary cannot last too long at room temperature. So the only way to store it at room temperature is to dry it, so if you want to know how to dry rosemary, click here (it is near the end of this article).

After the rosemary is dry, it is stored as follows:

  • Step 1: Put the dried rosemary in an airtight container or bag.

You can store rosemary in a glass jar or plastic container with an airtight lid, although you can also use an airtight bag. The important thing is to keep the rosemary sealed.

  • Step 2: Store the dried rosemary in a dark, moisture-free place.

Placing the dried rosemary away from sunlight or devices that emit heat is essential. This way, the dried rosemary can be at room temperature for between 1 and 2 years. [1]

How to store rosemary in the fridge?

Fresh rosemary has much more taste and smell than dried rosemary. Still, once you cut the rosemary from the plant, it will dry and decompose. 

To slow down that process, you can store fresh rosemary in the fridge as follows:

  • Step 1: Wash the rosemary.

Wash the rosemary branches with plenty of water, and thus remove any trace of dirt or dust on top.

  • Step 2: Dry the rosemary.

After washing the rosemary, dry the branches with kitchen paper, and then leave the rosemary for about 10 minutes at ambient temperature so that the remains of moisture that did not absorb the paper finish drying.

  • Step 3: Place the rosemary between damp paper towels.

Wet some paper towels, place the rosemary branches side by side, and put another moistened paper towel on top. In this way, you can keep the rosemary for a long time.

  • Step 4: Put the rosemary in an airtight bag or container.

Place the covered rosemary into an airtight bag or container to add another protection layer.

  • Step 5: Control the storage.

Write down the storage date of the rosemary.

  • Step 6: Store the rosemary in the fridge. 

You can place the bag or container with the rosemary in the coldest part of the refrigerator. Thus, rosemary can stay fresh for one or two weeks.

How to freeze rosemary?

Can rosemary be frozen? In fact, rosemary is one of the best-frozen herbs

If the time offered by the fridge is not enough, or you have a considerable amount of rosemary, more than you use a week, you can freeze it as follows:

  • Step 1: Wash and dry the rosemary.

Wash the rosemary branches with plenty of water to remove any dirt or dust on top. Then dry the branches with kitchen paper and leave them for about 10 minutes at room temperature so that the remains of moisture finish drying.

  • Step 2: Place the rosemary on a tray.

On a tray, place waxed paper or a nonstick sheet; on it, arrange the rosemary branches leaving space between them. You can also remove the leaves from the branches and layer them over the tray.

  • Step 3: Freeze the rosemary for a few hours.

Leave the tray in the freezer for two or three hours until the rosemary freezes perfectly well to prevent the rosemary from sticking to the other branches or leaves when stored in the freezer. 

  • Step 4: Bag the rosemary.

Once the leaves or branches of rosemary are frozen, you can put them inside a freezer bag with a tight seal or an airtight container suitable for the freezer.

  • Step 5: Set the storage date.

Write down the storage date of the rosemary.

  • Step 6: Store the rosemary in the freezer.

The rosemary can be frozen for about 4 or 6 months. To defrost it, leave it in the fridge overnight or at room temperature for several hours. 

How to dehydrate rosemary

Drying the rosemary is the preservation method that guarantees the most extended shelf life but additionally gives us a chance to store rosemary without using the fridge or freezer.

To dry rosemary, you can do one of three ways:

Dry the rosemary naturally.

  1. Wash the rosemary.
  2. Dry it with a paper towel.
  3. Tie a branch of rosemary using any kind of string.
  4. Hung it in a ventilated, dry, dark place like a closet, basement, or empty room. 
  5. Let it there until it tears apart when you press it. 

This process can take 2 or 3 weeks, depending on the climate and freshness of the rosemary.

Dry the rosemary in the oven.

  1. Wash the rosemary.
  2. Dry with a paper towel.
  3. Leave it near a window for half an hour. 
  4. Place the rosemary branches on a tray with parchment paper or a nonstick sheet.
  5. Put the oven at the lowest possible temperature. 
  6. Insert the tray with rosemary for about 30 or 45 minutes.

The rosemary will be ready when it is easy to break when you press it.

Dry the rosemary in a food dehydrator (best results)

  1. Wash the rosemary.
  2. Dry with a paper towel.
  3. Remove the leaves from the branches.
  4. Put the dehydrator at 35°C or 95°F.
  5. Leave the rosemary for about 8 or 10 hours to dry. 

How to know if rosemary got bad?

Being a plant, one way to tell if fresh rosemary got bad is when it starts to change color and texture. For example, when fresh rosemary turns brown, or the leaves are dark and wet to the touch, it has spoiled.

It is also terrible if its leaves develop mold; that is if it begins to have white or black spots. 

In the case of dried rosemary, it gets bad when it loses its smell and taste. To find out, rub a rosemary leaf between your fingers. If it has no odor or taste, it is no longer useful.

Why does rosemary get bad?

Rosemary is a plant, so you can no longer feed it when you cut it. Therefore, the decomposition process will begin: its leaves will dry out because it is not connected to its root, which absorbs the nutrients it requires from the soil.

And since they cannot adequately absorb sunlight, the chlorophyll that gives color to the plants is not released, so they lose color and freshness. 

Uprooted plants provide an ideal environment for the growth of microorganisms; therefore, if not stored properly, they could be filled with bacteria and attract many insects. 

How long does rosemary last?

Dried rosemary at room temperature1 – 2 years
Fresh chilled rosemary1 – 2 weeks
Fresh frozen rosemary4 – 6 months

What is the best way to preserve rosemary?

There is no ideal method to store rosemary, as it can be preserved in different ways. For example, refrigerated fresh rosemary can last for a couple of weeks

On the other hand, it could last several months if you freeze itIf rosemary is dried, it will last even longer, and you can also keep it at room temperature. 

If you are interested in how to store some other herb or food, this website has an extensive list of topics about it, so feel free to explore and search for what interests you. 


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