Keep Fruit Fresh-Lunchbox Tip!

Have you seen those little packages of cut up apples or other fruit sold in the grocery store or wholesale club? I’ve bought them when in a pinch as an easy alternative to sending cut up fruit in the kids’ lunches. But they can be pretty expensive and sometimes the fruit starts to turn brown even before the expiration date.

I’ve known about putting lemon juice on apples to keep them from turning brown, but the straight lemon juice can give the fruit a funny taste and then fruit comes home uneaten. Not exactly the plan I had in mind! There had to be a way for me to make my own for a lot less money.

So, awhile back I came across this tip on Lunch In a Box to keep acidulated water (lemon or lime juice mixed with water).

I’m not very exact about it. I usually fill a measuring cup with about one and half cups of tap water, then squirt some lemon juice in. Maybe two teaspoons I’d guess. Until recently, I was making up this mixture each evening when I was making lunches but after becoming more conscious about food waste, I started to feel bad pouring the mixture out when I was done dunking the apple slices.
Instead, I now make up the mixture and keep it in a resealable container in the refrigerator to dunk slices each night. It’s been working great and I can keep the water for at least a week before I feel I need to pour it out.

Here’s how it works:

Make up the lemon juice and water mixture and transfer from measuring cup to a resealable container.

Slice the apples and put them in the water. I usually dunk them pretty well (push down and around so they’re all covered by the lemon water) and leave in for about a minute.

Put in container for carrying in lunch or where ever! These apples actually went to school in my daughter’s lunch. She didn’t eat all of them (I put a lot in there) so these came back home. I put them in the refrigerator and remembered to eat them the NEXT day. You can see they are not really brown at all and that’s after more than 24 hours since being cut up!

I’m planning to try this with pears next but I imagine it should work just as well. I hope this little tip will help you get healthy foods into your family’s meals-on-the go and save a little money too!


  1. **** April **** says

    This is SUCH a great tip! My youngest (6) loves to take his lunch and loves apples in his lunch. He won't eat them, however, if they've browned. But he also won't just sit there and mow down on a whole apple. This will certainly make his day! I hated buying those individual baggies of apples becuase they never seem to be fresh, ya know?


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