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What Is a Crisper Drawer and How Do You Use It?

open refrigerator stocked with produce

Curious about crisper drawers? Here’s how to make the most of them.

You are not alone: many people who hear the term “crisper drawer” aren’t sure what it is at first. Most likely, you already encounter crisper drawers daily. When used right, you can preserve your fresh produce for as long as possible and avoid contamination. Here is more on what a crisper drawer is and how to harness it.

What Is a Crisper Drawer?

A crisper drawer is the clear drawer at the bottom of your refrigerator. Some fridges will have two crisper drawers. Some have settings to adjust their humidity level, while others do not. If not, they are just known as humidity drawers. A humidity drawer is closed off to create and preserve a high humidity environment, while the adjustable kind opens a vent to allow for constant airflow.

Best Use for a High Humidity Drawer

If you have two adjustable crisper drawers, you can set one to high humidity and the other to low humidity to get the most out of their functions. The high humidity drawer can help preserve leafy greens and vegetables that could wither sooner than later. The humidity will help to keep your lettuce, spinach, and cabbage crisp.

Best Use for a Low Humidity Drawer

A low humidity drawer will help preserve fresh fruits and non-leafy vegetables. Fresh fruits produce a gas called ethylene, which speeds up the ripening process. The low humidity drawer allows ethylene to flow out of the fridge and keep fruits cold and fresh for longer.

Alternate Use for the Crisper Drawer

You could also use the crisper drawer for storing raw meats since it is typically the coldest part of the fridge. Cold air sinks, so the bottom of the fridge has the best preserving qualities. The drawer can help limit contamination of other refrigerator items.

Organizing Your Crisper Drawers

Because of the different refrigeration needs of fruits and vegetables, it is better to keep them separate. Organize items in each drawer from front to back, keeping the most perishable items in the front. 

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