So many people love to eat olives as a snack, but they’re also great ingredients that help to add flavor to various dishes. If you love the taste of them, you probably like to buy jars full of them so you can have them whenever you want.
Most of the time, people are going to store olives in the jars that they come in. These jars contain brine, which is a liquid that is perfect for preserving and storing olives.
What if you don’t have brine, though? Is there an effective way to store olives without it?
Keep reading to learn about how you can best store olives without brine. This should help you to solve any problems that you’re having so that you can continue to store your olives until you have a chance to eat them.
Unopened Olives Can Be Stored in the Pantry
Unopened olives should be able to be stored in the pantry for some time. So long as you can give them a cool and dry spot, everything will be fine until you decide to open the container and eat some.
Once you’ve opened the olives, you’re going to want to refrigerate them. Assuming that the olives didn’t come with brine, you’re going to want to store them in the fridge in a plastic container of some sort.
Olives Can Be Stored in Oil
One of the other common ways that you will find olives being sold is with oil. Sometimes olives come submerged in oil, and they should be fine on a pantry shelf when left unopened.
These olives should be fine once you open them, too, but you’ll need to keep an eye on the expiration date that is printed on the package. This expiration date is generally going to be within a few months of when you bought them.
You see, olives that are stored in brine can stay good for up to two years in the best-case scenario. Olives stored in oil can only stay good for a few months, and you’re going to want to eat them up pretty fast so that you don’t waste them.
This doesn’t mean that storing olives in oil is the wrong way to go, but it’s not going to give you the same long-lasting effect as the brine. If you’re going to be eating olives in a timely fashion, then storing them in oil will be perfectly acceptable.
Find a Storage Container for Them
If you’ve bought fresh olives from a deli or a farmer’s market, you should find some type of storage container to put them in. You won’t just want to store them in a bag or something like that.
Ideally, you should use some type of plastic food storage container that can fit all of your olives. You could also choose to use an old olive jar if you happen to find one.
Olives that don’t have brine and ones that are marinated should be refrigerated. If you want them to keep for the longest time possible, storing them in a safe plastic container in the fridge is your best bet.
These olives aren’t going to stay good for very long, though. You’re going to want to eat them within a few weeks so that they don’t go bad.
Storing Them in Brine Is Still the Best
The advice listed above is all useful and good, but you should remember that storing olives in brine will be the best thing to do. If you want them to taste great and stay good for longer periods of time, you’ll need to use brine.
Thankfully, most olives that you’ll find in the grocery store will come in jars that contain brine. You’ll probably only need to worry about finding a brine substitute if something happens to the jar or if you buy fresh olives from a market or deli.
You still need to be careful about how you’re storing them even when you have brine, though. For example, storing an olive jar in a spot that is exposed to sunlight could cause the olives to go bad.
If you want to get the best results, you’re going to need to find a dark and cool spot for the olives. Most people place olive jars in their pantries, but you can find another spot that fits the bill, too.
After opening the jar, it’s recommended to transfer it to the fridge. Most olive enthusiasts say that refrigerating olives once the jar has been opened is best, and you want them to be tasty and fresh.
You should try to eat the olives once the jar has been opened within about three weeks. Opening the jar will cause them to go bad faster even when they’re stored in brine.
Those very long storage times of up to two years are meant for olives in brine that have remained unopened. As long as you keep this in mind, things will be okay for you.
You Can Make Your Own Brine
Did you know that it’s possible to make your own brine? Sometimes you might make the mistake of discarding the brine that came with a jar of olives.
When something like this occurs, it’s going to be possible to make a homemade brine that can act as a substitute. This isn’t going to be as strong as the brine that came in the olive jar originally, but it can work fine for a while.
To make the brine, you’re just going to put ½ teaspoon of salt in a cup of water. For every cup of water you need to use, you should be adding ½ teaspoon of salt.
This is a very simple brine recipe, but it can help you to store olives for about two weeks. So long as you eat the olives before the two weeks are up, you’re going to be fine with the results.
You Can Freeze Olives
Another thing to consider is that you can freeze olives if you’d like to. You should be able to freeze olives for around six months, this is very simple to do.
Just place some fresh olives in an airtight container. Once they are in an airtight container, they can be placed in a freezer.
Some people like to add brine to the olives ahead of time so that they will have the best texture possible, but it isn’t necessary for the freezing process. If you really need to store olives because you know you won’t be eating them for a while, freezing is an option to consider.
Now that you know more about olives and how they can be stored, it’s going to be easier to figure out what you want to do. Generally, brine is going to be the ideal way to store them, but other methods work okay.
Olives can be stored in oil and you can refrigerate them in airtight containers. It’s even possible to freeze them when you’re in a pinch.
If you’re without brine, you can choose to make your own that will help to store olives for a few weeks. Just decide what you want to do so that you can enjoy them and keep them tasting delicious.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.