Strawberry picking is a delightful summertime activity, and strawberries are a wonderful summertime treat. Nothing beats red, ripe, fresh strawberries from the garden or local farmers market in our ice cream, cakes, pies, strawberry jam, and beverages, and nothing calls warm weather and sunshine to mind like their sweet flavor and firm flesh.
With all of the benefits that strawberries provide, it’s no wonder we want to know how to freeze strawberries so we can enjoy their fantastic taste all year and not just during strawberry season. In this guide, we show you our favorite ways of freezing strawberries.
If you’ve wanted to store your fruit for winter and have been wondering, “Can I freeze strawberries?”, this guide is for you. We give you five great methods for freezing strawberries that are surefire winners, and we show you how to safely thaw your strawberries when you’re ready to use them.
We also take a look at the health benefits you’ll realize when you eat strawberries regularly, and we even share one of our favorite strawberry recipes so you can put your frozen fruit to good use.
When we finish, you’ll be amazed that you haven’t frozen your strawberries before.
Freezing and Thawing – The Ultimate How to Freeze Strawberries Guide
You’ll find the answer to “Can you freeze strawberries?” without having to do an exhaustive search. Yes, you absolutely can freeze strawberries, but to make sure that your strawberries make it through storage and thawing undamaged, you need to a tried-and-true process. Making sure that your freezing and thawing methods are reliable and effective ensures that your fruit stays fresh and lasts for months.
This section looks at five different strawberry freezing methods. All of them let you preserve strawberries for long-term use, and the variety of choices means that you’ll always have an option that suits your needs. We close the section by going over how to thaw frozen strawberries so that they come out of the freezer in the same shape they were in when you picked them.
Freezing Plain Strawberries Whole
Sometimes, the most straightforward methods are the best ones. To preserve strawberries in pristine form and without any added flavors or sweeteners, a basic plan for freezing strawberries whole might be just what you need to keep your fruit in top condition.
Gently wash the fresh berries in cold water, and dry them with the cloth. Don’t leave them soaking in the water, as that leaches nutrients and flavor. Remove the hulls with the knife, place the berries on the cookie sheet in a single layer, and put the baking sheet in the freezer for an hour or two.
Separate the strawberries into portions, fill the freezer bags or containers, and remove any air from them. Too much air in the container causes freezer burn. Label and freeze the bags.
You can learn how to freeze bananas in a similar way, by either slicing them in rounds or peeling the bananas and freezing them whole before putting in freezer bags.
Freezing Strawberries with Sugar
If you’re worried about strawberries spoiling or getting freezer burn, opt for a freezing method that uses sugar. Sugar packing strawberries protects them from color loss and freezer burn. This method might be the best way to freeze strawberries that you’ll encounter, and we recommend it.
Follow the same preparation process as our recipe for freezing plain strawberries until you’ve hulled the berries. Add a cup of sugar for every two quarts of strawberries and stir the mixture gently until the sugar dissolves.
You can lightly crush a few berries to add some juice if you wish. Spoon the strawberries and sugar mixture into airtight containers. Seal the containers, label and freeze them.
How to Store Strawberries in Simple Syrup
This storage method kicks the sugar freezing process up a notch. In this method, you’ll use a basic water and sugar syrup to preserve the strawberries and keep them from going bad in the freezer. Freezing coulis is an excellent option for frozen strawberries in a pie or other dessert when you thaw them.
Heat the water in a saucepan until just about to boil, and add the sugar. Turn off the heat, and stir the mixture until the sugar dissolves. Clean and hull the strawberries, and put them in the containers. Fill the containers with the syrup, leaving about ½ inch headspace. Label and freeze them.
How to Freeze Strawberries as a Coulis
To maximize freezer space and for using strawberries in purée form, create a strawberry coulis, also called strawberry sauce. Add some sugar and citric acid to preserve the coulis.
Add the lemon juice, strawberries, and sugar to the food processor or blender, and pulse the mixture until it’s chopped. Blend the mixture into a liquid.
Pour the liquid through a sieve to remove seeds if you wish. Pour the liquid into containers, leaving about ½ inch headspace: label and freeze.
Freezing Strawberry-Limeade Concentrate
Storing strawberries for future meals is great, but to prepare your fruits for quick-access soft drinks, give frozen strawberry-limeade concentrate a try. You’ll be able to reach for a refreshing summer drink all year.
Blend the strawberries until they turn to liquid, and pour the liquid through a strainer to remove any seeds. Mix the sugar, strawberry sauce, and lime juice. Pour the concentrate mixture into the ice cube trays and freeze. Whenever you want a drink, drop a couple of cubes into a glass, and fill the glass with water.
How to Thaw Frozen Strawberries
Getting our strawberries into the freezer is only part of the journey, of course. We need to make sure that our frozen strawberries thaw correctly to keep from injuring the berries or changing their flavor or texture. The thawing process is just as critical as the freezing method.
Except for the strawberry-limeade cubes, all freezing methods require slow and careful thawing. Place a frozen strawberry container in the refrigerator at least a full day before you plan on using the fruit. Your fridge is cold enough to prevent shocking the strawberries but warm enough to allow thawing.
Why Freeze Strawberries?
Preserving food takes time out of our already busy schedules and requires quite a bit of work on our part, so we need to make sure that the food we preserve is worth the work we have to put into it. So, what’s so special about strawberries that make them worth keeping?
We answer that question here by taking a close look at the many ways in which strawberries aid your health when you eat them regularly. We close this article with our favorite strawberries recipe so you can put your frozen strawberries to ideal use.
Strawberries have a lot of things going for them in the health department. They increase HDL cholesterol levels, which is the good type of cholesterol. They are sodium free and low in calories, which is surprising for such a sweet treat. Strawberries also contain tons of polyphenols, which are antioxidants that promote good health.
That’s not all, though. You’ll get more vitamin C from a single serving of strawberries than you will from an entire orange, and you’ll also get plenty of potassium and magnesium, too. Strawberries help protect against cancer, as well.
Sweet and Satisfying Flavor
Strawberries aren’t just good for you, of course. They also taste incredible and add a pleasant sweetness and burst of flavor to any meal. You can use strawberries to add zest to drinks, desserts, and more. Strawberries taste amazing by themselves or as part of our prized homemade strawberry pie recipe.
Line the crust with double-thick parchment paper or foil, and bake it at 450°F for eight minutes. Remove the cover and bake for five minutes more. Set aside to cool.
Combine the sugar, water, and cornstarch in a saucepan. Stir until smooth, and bring to a boil. Stir the mix until it thickens. Remove the pot from the heat, add the gelatin, and stir until it dissolves. Refrigerate the mixture for about twenty minutes.
Place the strawberries in the crust, and pour the liquid mixture over them. Refrigerate until the pie sets and is ready to eat. Serve with whipped cream.
We hope you enjoyed our comprehensive article on how to freeze strawberries. You no longer need to wonder, “Can you freeze strawberries?” Instead, our article gives you five fantastic options for freezing. With so many options and ways to preserve your strawberries, you’ll be enjoying their sweet flavor the whole year through.
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