How Long do Onions Last

By Charlotte King

Onions are a staple in most kitchens. They can be used in everything from soups to salads, and they have a unique flavor that cannot be replicated by any other vegetable and they are also very versatile – you can use them raw or cooked, whole or sliced, pickled or roasted. Onions provide many benefits for your health too – they boost the immune system and they contain lots of vitamin C! so we’re clear that they are so useful that it is worth knowing how long onions last after being purchased at the store. This blog post will answer just that question!

Onions will last about 6  – 8 months when stored properly, so you should keep reading to learn how to best store them! Onion storage starts in the store- onions that have been damaged or bruised will not last as long because their tissues are exposed and ripe with bacteria. Onions can also be cut before purchase which causes them to spoil much more quickly.

How Long do Onions Last at Room Temperature?

Onions are best stored at around 50 – 60 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent sprouting. Onions should be stored away from light in a cool, dark place like the pantry or basement for maximum shelf life. Whole onions stored properly, you can even get your onions to last for a period of 6 to 8 months. However, a lot of people may not have access to a  space like this. In such cases, the next best approach is to refrigerate the onions.

However, if you don’t have the fridge space for storing the onions, then the only option is to store them at room temperature. Onions should be stored with their root ends down and their tips upwards, as this keeps them fresher for longer than any other orientation.

How Long do Onions Last in the Refrigerator?

If you are looking to store onions in the refrigerator, whole raw onions will last about three to six months in the refrigerator. They should ideally be removed from plastic bags before refrigeration, as this can trap too much moisture and cause them to rot a lot more quickly than usual.

If you have onions that are already peeled and chopped, they need to be packed in an air-tight container and stored in the refrigerator. These onions will last for a maximum of seven to ten days.

How Long do Different Types of Onions Last?

Red onions

Red onions have a subtle sweetness and mild flavor. This makes them an ideal choice for salads, salsas, and sandwiches. Red onions last 4 -6 weeks if you refrigerate them. Out of the fridge, they may last up to 4 weeks.

Fresh red onions can also be stored by trimming off both ends on the onion and then placing them in an unsealed or loosely sealed plastic bag inside of the refrigerator crisper/drawer. On average, they will keep for 10 days if stored this way.

White Onions

White onions are softer and milder than red onions and they taste best when they are cooked quickly or served raw. Similar to red onions, white onions too will last 4 -6 weeks. days in your pantry. Store them in a cool and dark place for maximum longevity. If you want them to last even longer, you can store them in the refrigerator for 4 – 6 weeks without any problems.

White onions can be trimmed and stored in the refrigerator as well. Trim both ends and store them in an unsealed bag or loosely sealed bag and place them in the crisper section of the refrigerator. They will last for an average of 7 days using this method.

Yellow Onions

Yellow Onions

Yellow onions are the ideal variety to use for caramelization. They serve as an excellent base for your soups and sauces. When stored properly, yellow onions will last 4 – 6 weeks in your pantry and 4 -8 weeks if stored in the refrigerator.

Fresh yellow onions too, can be stored by trimming their ends and then storing them in the vegetable crisper/ drawer of your refrigerator. On average, they will last for about 7 days, when stored this way. 

Green Onions

Green onions are usually the least expensive onions to buy. On average, they will keep for about 10 days in a sealed storage bag or wrapped up in a paper towel inside the refrigerator crisper/drawer.

However, with a little extra effort, you can make them last up to 5 weeks! The controlling factor in storing green onions or scallions is the moisture level.

Here are some steps that you can follow to make your green onions last longer:

  1. Start by removing the packaging on your green onions and prepare them by cutting off their roots. Cutting off about ½ an inch should be enough. You can save these roots and use them to grow your green onions!
  1. Line up your green onions and cut them in half so that you can easily store them in a plastic bag and then, store them in your refrigerator. Don’t fold the green onions when storing them in your refrigerator as this will cause bruises and your onions will end up spoiling faster.
  1. Dry off your green onions by using a paper towel. Controlling the moisture is the most important step when storing green onion. Green onions thrive best in a humid climate and the excess moisture can cause them to rot very fast.
  1. Next, pack the dried green onions in some paper towels. Don’t wrap them too tightly as we don’t want them to be crushed.
  1. Finally, place your paper wraps in individual plastic bags, seal them and store them in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator. Be sure to label your plastic bags with the packing date so that you can use your onions on time.

How Long do Pickled Onions Last?

How Long do Different Types of Onions Last?

Pickled onions are something that can take your meals from tasty to out of the world. So how long do pickled onions last? Well, the answer depends on the way they were prepared. It’s best to consume Quick-pickled onions within 2-3 days, but if they’re refrigerated, they will last up to 2 – 3 weeks.

However, vacuum-sealed onions will last up to a year in your pantry, but once opened, they should be stored in the refrigerator and consumed within a month.

Tips for Storing Onions

Tip #1: Avoid storing onions and potatoes together as the onions will cause potatoes to sprout as well!

Tip #2: Onions should be hung and allowed to dry completely before storing. Storing them with excess moisture will speed up their decaying process.

Tip #3: Do not store onions in a plastic bag. Plastic bags hinder the natural flow of air and as a result, reduce the storage life.

How to Choose the Best Onions

When you are planning to buy and store onions, you need to be able to pick the best ones possible.

Pick onions that are firm and have a thin papery skin. Avoid onions that feel soft to touch, have spots on them, or are sprouting.

Avoid choosing onions that have a lot of moisture content. Onions last best when they are dried out. If you do want to store onions that have a higher moisture level, dry out the onions for a few days by laying them out in a well-ventilated area.

Frequently Asked Questions

Storing Onions

How to use sprouted onions?

Onions might get a little soft when they are sprouted. However, they are completely fine to eat. You might want to avoid using them raw and rather use them in your cooking recipes. You can even use the sprouted onions to plant your onions!

Can you store onions and garlic together?

Yes, you can store onions and garlic together. Store them in separate mesh bags. Don’t ever wash your garlic or onions before storing them. Store them in a cool, dark, and well-ventilated area.

Why are my onions rotting in storage?

Onions can rot due to several reasons. They might rot due to exposure to some bacteria that are naturally available on organic matter. They might also rot due to excess moisture present in the onions. When you store your onions, make sure they are as dry as they can be. Every few weeks, go through the onions to pick out and discard any onions that seem to be soft or moldy. If one onion is moldy, it might end up spoiling your entire onion produce.

What is the black stuff on onions?

The black sooty substance found on onions is a kind of mold called Aspergillus niger. The sooty substance is found on the outer layers of the skin and is mostly harmless. As long as the onions are mildly affected and are still firm to the touch, you can peel the onions and wash them thoroughly before use. If your onions feel soft to touch or are moldy, discard them.



Onions are one of the most versatile ingredients you can find in your kitchen. They come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. And each one has its special use. To ensure that they are used to their full potential, they must be stored correctly as they can last for a long time if they are stored properly.

In conclusion, to store onions you must use a well-ventilated, dry, and dark place. You can also help onions stay fresh longer by storing them in mesh bags or netting. Finally, onions should be stored at a lower temperature around 50 – 60 degrees Fahrenheit as this keeps the onions from sprouting. Hopefully, this post will help you with all your onions storing needs. Check out our guide for canning onions!

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