How To Store Mint—7 Methods of Storing Fresh Mint To Enjoy All Year Round

Bunch of Fresh green organic mint leaf on wooden table

Mint, like any other leafy herb, wilts. Wilting will compromising its flavor and nutrient content. But there are several methods you can use to store mint to extend its lifespan. These work whether on the countertop, in the refrigerator, or in the freezer.

Below, we have provided detailed steps for seven methods of storing fresh mint. But first, what steps should you take to prepare mint leaf for storage?

Let’s get started!

How To Prepare Mint Leaves For Storage

To ensure your mint stays fresh longer, you must start with a new bunch. You want to go for a high-quality mint. It doesn’t matter if you buy your mint from a local grocery store or have some ready for harvesting in the garden.

Make sure it has a strong minty smell and green, blooming leaves. Look out for yellow, dried, or darkened leaves, and get rid of them. Depending on the storage method, you may need to wash the mint leaves first or pat them dry. Also, sort the mint to remove any weeds or bugs.

You can keep thick and purplish mint stems for further propagation. All you have to do is cut the end of the stems and put them in a glass jar with water. Mint leaves will begin to sprout within a week.

How To Store Mint: Refrigerating

Fresh mint can stay in the fridge for up to one month if stored appropriately. There are several methods for storing fresh mint in the refrigerator. These include in a glass jar with water, wrapped up in a damp paper towel, or a lunch box. Some methods allow you to store the mint together with the stems. In other cases, you’ll need to separate the leaves. Below we have listed specific steps for storing fresh mint in the refrigerator.

Method 1: Mint Stems in a Glass Jar with Water

What You Need

  • Glass Jar
  • Fresh mint
  • Clean running water
  • Plastic bag
  • Sharp knife or kitchen scissors

Instructions

  1. Clean your mint with flowing tap water.
  2. Bunch the mint together with the stems aligned.
  3. Make a diagonal cut on the lower edge of the stem to encourage proper hydration.
  4. Arrange the mint stems in a glass jar with the leaves hanging out.
  5. Fill the jar with water until you’ve submerged the stems.
  6. Loosely cover the top of the jar and mint leaves with a plastic bag.
  7. Store the mint in the refrigerator.
  8. To keep the mint fresh, change out the water in the jar every few days.

Method 2: Wrap Mint Leaves in a Wet Paper Towel

What You Need

  • Fresh mint
  • Paper towel
  • Bowl of water
  • Plastic bag

Instructions

  1. Separate the mint leaves from the stems.
  2. Take a long piece of paper towel and dip it in a bowl of water.
  3. Squeeze out the excess water.
  4. Spread it out and lay the mint leaves on one side.
  5. Roll the paper towel from the end where you’ve laid the mint leaves. Put it in a plastic bag. Close the bag, leaving a bit of space at the top to allow for aeration, and place it in the fridge. The mint leaves will last for up to three weeks.

Method 3: In a Lunch Box

What You Need

  • Fresh mint
  • Lunch box
  • Paper towel
  • Kitchen towel

Instructions

  1. Separate the mint leaves from the stems.
  2. Spread out a clean, dry kitchen towel on the kitchen counter.
  3. Lay the mint leaves on one-half of the towel.
  4. Fold the other half of the towel over the mint leaves and gently pat them dry.
  5. Dry your lunch box and line it with a dry paper towel.
  6. Put the dried mint leaves in the lunch box on top of the paper towel.
  7. Cover them with another paper towel.
  8. Tightly close the lunch box and put it in the refrigerator. The mint leaves can last up to one month.

Freezing Mint

Mint can stay in the freezer for up to six months. There are several ways to store mint in the freezer. These include the ice cube method, the baking sheet method, or using a vacuum sealer.

Method 4: Storing Mint in the Freezer (Ice cube Method)

What You Need

  • Fresh mint
  • Ice cube tray
  • Paper towel or dry kitchen towel
  • Airtight freezer bag or container

Instructions

  1. Sort out your bunch of mint to remove dried, yellow, and withered leaves.
  2. Separate the mint leaves from their stems.
  3. Spread a dry paper towel or kitchen towel on your kitchen counter and lay the mint leaves on top of it.
  4. Either pat the mint leaves or wrap and spin them with a towel to dry them.
  5. Unwrap the mint leaves, collect them, and finely chop them.
  6. Place one to two tablespoons of the chopped mint leaves in each compartment of the ice cube tray. They should fill the ice cube tray halfway.
  7. Add water to fill the other half of the ice cube compartments and leave them to freeze.
  8. Once frozen, collect the mint cubes and place them in the freezer bag or container. Close it tight and store it in your freezer. The mint can last up to three months. If you make more batches, label the freezer bag according to the date of freezing. Use the frozen mint stored earliest.
  9. You can use the frozen mint cubes in teas, soups, and sauces. To use them, place the required number of cubes in an empty glass and allow them to melt. Once melted, sieve out the water and save the mint. Use as need be in your recipes.

Method 5: Storing Mint in the Freezer (Baking Sheet Method)

What You Need

  • Fresh bunch of mint
  • Baking sheet
  • Paper towel or dry kitchen towel
  • Airtight freezer bag or container

Instructions

  1. Sort out your bunch of mint to remove dried, yellow, and withered leaves.
  2. Separate the mint leaves from their stems.
  3. Spread a dry paper towel or kitchen towel on your kitchen counter, and lay the mint leaves on top of it.
  4. Either pat the mint leaves or wrap and spin them with a towel to dry them. Freezing wet mint leaves can encourage mildew and mold growth.
  5. Lay the mint leaves on a baking sheet and freeze for two to three hours.
  6. Once frozen, put the mint leaves in a freezer bag or container and close it tightly. Store it in the freezer. The frozen mint leaves can last up to three months, and you can use them in a wide range of recipes. You don’t need to thaw the mint leaves to use them in recipes as it causes wilting. Use them as they are or chop them while still frozen.

Method 6: Storing Mint in the Freezer (Vacuum Sealer Method)

Vacuum sealing herbs is the best method of storing fresh herbs in a freezer. It is easy to do and preserves the nutrients and flavor.

What You Need

  • Fresh mint
  • Vacuum sealer
  • Vacuum sealer bags
  • Hot water
  • Ice cold water
  • Paper towel or dry kitchen towel

Instructions

  1. Sort out your bunch of mint to remove dried, yellow, and withered leaves.
  2. Separate the mint leaves from their stems.
  3. Blanch the mint leaves by dipping them in boiling water for 20-30 seconds. Blanching helps to keep the mint’s flavor.
  4. Put the blanched mint leaves in ice water.
  5. Spread a dry paper towel or kitchen towel on your kitchen counter and lay the mint leaves on top of it.
  6. Either pat the mint leaves or wrap and spin them with a towel to dry them.
  7. Use several small vacuum sealer bags instead of one large one. Pack the mint leaves in small batches, enough for single cooking, and remember to label the vacuum sealing date on each bag.
  8. Vacuum seal each bag and place them in the freezer. Vacuum-sealed mint can last for up to six months.

On the Countertop

On the Countertop
Source: Unsplash

Method 7: Storing Mint Leaves on the Counter

This method works for keeping mint fresh for about a week.

What You Need

  • Fresh mint
  • Glass jar
  • Water
  • Kitchen scissors

Instructions

  1. Sort out the mint leaves.
  2. Bundle them up and trim the end of the stems.
  3. Dip the leaf ends in water, and hold them upside down to drain the excess water.
  4. Place the mint stems in a glass jar.
  5. Fill the glass jar with water until you’ve submerged the stems.
  6. Leave the mint in the glass jar on the counter.
  7. Change the water every day or if it gets cloudy. The mint should last for about a week.

Conclusion

Mint has a short shelf life, but the above storing methods will help you to extend its freshness for up to six months. These methods are easy and only need tools that are available in your home. You can use the countertop method for short-term storage; refrigeration for one week to one-month storage; and freezing for long-term storage.

Let us know which method you prefer and why in the comments below!

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