Ripening in the fall, kiwis appear in markets from November through April because they retain their quality well, according to the Purdue University Center for New Crops and Plant Products website. But the fruit does eventually lose quality and spoil. Pick the best quality kiwis you can at the store and store them properly to extend their storage time before they do go bad.
Select a kiwi that is firm, with unwrinkled skin that has no dark blemishes. Large or small kiwis are equally tasty according to the California Kiwifruit website.
When they’re perfectly ripe, kiwis turn slightly soft, allowing you to gently press the fruit with your finger. But once that point has past, the fruit is overly ripe, but not yet spoiled or bad. Signs of over-ripeness include:
- Overly soft skin that is so soft to the pressure of your fingers that you can almost rupture the skin.
- Extreme wrinkling or shriveling of the outer skin of the fruit.
- Soft and slightly squishy fruit inside the kiwi.
Store whole, uncut kiwis at room temperature for 2 to 3 days until they are ripe. They’ll typically keep for 5 to 7 days in the refrigerator when stored in a plastic bag. Store any cut kiwis in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.
A spoiled kiwi has gone beyond over-ripeness and should be discarded. Soft fruits like kiwi might be contaminated under the surface of any bruised or moldy spots according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Throw the kiwi away if you see:
- Oozing fruit.
Overly soft or very squishy fruit.
Signs of mold. Once you can see any signs of black or brown spots or fuzzy green mold, there are most likely undetectable bits of mold elsewhere in the fruit.
As long as your kiwis haven’t spoiled completely, use them in ways where their soft texture won’t matter, such as:
- Blended with fruit juice for smoothies and frozen fruit pops.
- Mixed with yogurt for sorbets and ice cream.
- Chopped fine and added to pancake or waffle batter, where you won’t notice the fruit’s softness. Follow the recipe on the California Kiwifruit website.
- Chopped and stirred into quick breads or jam. Use recipes from the California Kiwifruit website.