Zucchinis are the go-to veggies that most people choose for their gardens, but a single plant produces up to ten pounds of zucchini in only one growing season. Once you figure out how to freeze shredded zucchini, you’ll have a safe place to store all the zucchini you’re not able to finish before it rots.
Growing vegetables in at-home gardens is one of the easiest ways to ensure that we’re eating the freshest, cleanest ingredients possible. Freezing shredded zucchini is only one way to store this veggie, but the shredding process makes it easier to handle later.
Because there are hundreds of frozen shredded zucchini recipes, shredded it beforehand helps eliminate future prep work so that all you have to do is reach in the freezer, thaw a bag, and throw it into whatever pot or pan you’re using.
Why Plant Zucchini?
Zucchinis are a type of summer squash. They are closely related to other fruits and veggies like melons, cucumbers, and squash. Some zucchini types reach over three feet long, but most are only eight inches when picked.
For hundreds of years, people used zucchini for medicinal purposes, and once thought to help treat common colds and aches. Zucchini plants are rich in essential vitamins and minerals.
One cup has only 17 calories, but it is full of iron, calcium, zinc, and vitamins A, C, and K. They are also high in antioxidants that benefit our skin, heart, and eyes.
On top of that, they reduce blood sugar levels, digestion, and overall heart health. Freezing grated zucchini is a simple way to preserve those benefits so that you can take advantage of all the work it took to grow them in your garden.
Unfortunately, zucchini shelf life is pretty short, so it’s important to know the best ways to store it you so have fresh zucchini whenever you want it. Freezing is the perfect option.
Freezing Shredded Zucchini
Can you freeze grated zucchini? Freezing is one of the easiest and best ways to preserve zucchini. However, before you learn how to freeze shredded zucchini, make sure you preserve the freshest possible vegetables.
Large zucchini often become tougher and have more seeds than smaller ones, but both sizes are safe for shredding or grating. When choosing which zucchini to freeze, find some that are roughly eight inches long.
They should never be mushy and always be free of wrinkled skin, soft spots, or blemishes. How long does zucchini stay fresh? Only hold on to fresh zucchini for about three days before freezing so that the enzymes don’t cause it to go bad too quickly.
Of course, you can also freeze whole zucchini, but it preserves better if you slice, shred, or grate it first.
How to Freeze Shredded Zucchini the Easy Way
Wash your zucchinis under cold water and set them to the side. With a cheese grater, hold the veggie lengthwise on the medium or large grates and begin grating until the entire zucchini is gone.
Put the shredded zucchini in a few sheets of paper towels and wrap them around the shreds. Place a clean colander in the sink to catch any pieces that fall and squeeze the zucchini inside the paper towels to remove excess water.
Squeezing out extra liquid creates less of a mess later. Portion out two cup portions of the vegetable.
Put each of the two cups of zucchini in plastic bags or freezer bags and place them in your home’s freezer for up to six months. These bags are great for throwing into a soup or stir fry.
Another Way to Freeze Shredded Zucchini
Of all the ways to freeze zucchini, this is one of our favorite techniques. This method removes the zucchini’s moisture and gets frozen before putting it into bags so that none of it sticks together.
Cut the zucchini into chunks and put the pieces into a food processor. Shred the zucchini in the processor and put the shreds into a cheese cloth. Wrap the cheese cloth around the zucchini and squeeze out all the excess moisture.
Spread the shreds into a thin, single layer on a baking sheet and put them in the freezer until frozen. Remove the sheet and scoop the frozen zucchini into freezer bags. Store them in the freezer for six months.
Freezing Zucchini Slices
As much as we love frozen shredded zucchini, sometimes this isn’t always our preferred method. Sliced zucchini is some people’s favored way to store them because they’re easier to handle and blanch.
Blanching is a process that helps vegetables maintain their texture and color before putting them in the freezer or canning. It also helps protect against freezer burn.
To blanch zucchini, cut the zucchini into slices and drop them in a large pot of boiling water for 30 seconds before submerging them in a large bowl of ice water. Drain the water from the bowl and dry the slices on paper towels.
Spread the sliced zucchini in a single layer on a cookie sheet and place them in the freezer. Once frozen, remove the slices from the tray and add two cup portions to freezer bags. Store the bags in the freezer for six months.
Can you freeze cucumber slices? Yes, this is a great way to store this veggie. There’s no need to blanch cucumbers first, though.
Freezing Zucchini Noodles
Although noodles are slightly different from shredded, this recently became a popular method for freezing shredded zucchini. Instead of grating the zucchini, put it in a spiralizer.
Zucchini noodles make an excellent noodle substitute and only have to be cooked in hot sauce for a few minutes before they’re ready to eat. Don’t be afraid to use a lot of zucchini, so you always have some of these tasty noodles on hand at all times.
Wash your zucchini under cold water and put it in a spiralizer machine. Spiralize the zucchini and separate the noodles into individual bags.
For the best way to store zucchini noodles or zoodles, put the bags in the freezer for up to six months. When you’re ready, remove the frozen zucchini from the freezer and put them into a hot pan to cook them.
How to Defrost Frozen Zucchini
Defrosting zucchini from the freezer is easy, but it does compromise the texture of the veggie.
For some frozen shredded zucchini recipes, thawing the veggie is essential before mixing it into a batter. To defrost it, set the bag on the counter until completely thawed.
Frozen Shredded Zucchini Recipes
Your zucchini might be frozen, but what is the best way to use it afterward? Some of our preferred recipes are classics, while others may seem new. These favorite zucchini recipes work as a dessert or side dish and are some of the best ways to use frozen zucchini.
Homemade Zucchini Bread Recipe
Zucchini bread is one of the tastiest recipes for frozen shredded zucchini. Make this bread with either fresh or frozen zucchini. If bread isn’t your thing, try incorporating it into brownies that surprise your loved ones.
Preheat your oven to 350°F and spray a loaf pan with cooking spray. Whisk the zucchini, both sugars, applesauce, eggs, oil, and vanilla in a large bowl. Stir in the flour, salt, cinnamon, baking soda, and baking powder.
Pour the zucchini batter into the greased loaf pan and bake it in the oven for 50 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and let it cool for 20 minutes before removing the loaf from the pan and setting it on a wire rack to cool to room temperature.
Baked Zucchini Bites Recipe
Shredded zucchini doesn’t only have to get used in desserts. There are plenty of recipes out there that are healthy and delicious as a side dish for dinner.
Preheat your oven to 425°F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Spray the paper with cooking spray. Squeeze the liquid from the zucchini and then stir it into a bowl with the remaining ingredients.
Scoop tablespoon-sized dollops of the mixture onto the lined baking sheet and bake them for 20 minutes until the edges are cooked and golden.
Zucchini is a vegetable that we only get to appreciate from June to August. Although we love eating it during the peak of the season, we still get to devour it during the winter when we learn methods for freezing shredded zucchini and turning it into recipes we love.
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