How to Keep Celery Crisp

Keeping celery fresh and on hand in your kitchen allows you to be prepared when you want to add great flavor and crunch to soups, salads and snacks. However, most cooks can't use a whole celery bunch all at once, so how do you keep celery fresh and crisp when you need it? Follow these tips for keeping celery crunchy.


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    Crisp it. Here's a tip from produce managers: Trim the bottom of the celery bunch just slightly with a paring knife, leaving the bunch intact. Put your celery in a cup of warm--not hot--water for 5 minutes, then put it in a cup of ice water for 5 minutes.
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    Dry the stalks and leaves with a paper towel. Water inside your celery is good, but on the outside of your celery, water will cause the leaves to rot faster.
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    Wrap the celery in aluminum foil. Get a piece of foil that is about 2 inches (5.1 cm) longer and 4 inches (10.2 cm) wider than your celery. Tightly roll your celery in the foil until it is completely covered, then fold in each end. Make your foil wrap as airtight as possible. Keeping your celery airtight will maintain the moisture balance and keep your celery stalks fresher.
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    Keep the celery in your refrigerator. Wrap the celery in aluminum foil and place it in the crisper drawer.
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    Trim and ice your celery. Each time you use your celery, trim the bottom slightly and place the bottom of the celery in a cup of ice water for 5 minutes. Dry your celery again. Then, re-use the same aluminum foil to wrap the celery to keep the air out. Place the celery back in the refrigerator. Repeat until you have used all of your celery.


  • The secret to fresh, crisp celery is keeping your packaging airtight. Aluminum foil works best to keep celery's moisture in and outside air and humidity out.
  • Soak celery in ice water before serving as a snack or if the celery becomes wilted.
  • If you do not have a refrigerator, use the same method, but leave the root end of the celery unwrapped and keep it in a glass of cold water. Be sure to change the water daily and store the celery in a cool, dry corner of your kitchen.
  • Consider cutting the celery leaves from the stalks, then keep the leaves separate. Celery leaves wilt faster than the stalks, so if you are using the leaves for cooking, cut them off and use them first for the best flavor. The stalks will keep longer and can be used later.

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Categories: Food Selection and Storage