Yes, you can definitely freeze zucchini. Freezing zucchini is indeed a great way to extend its shelf life, however, it has to be done effectively using a proper set of instructions as mentioned in this article. Zucchini is one of the go-to ingredients in many of my recipes including noodles, bread and many other summer meals for its great hydrating properties. However, when you have ended up with way too much zucchini, the only option you got is to freeze it.
However, freezing it is not as easy as it sounds. If you wish to know more about ‘how to freeze zucchini’, then keep reading to find out more!
best way to freeze zucchini
Wondering how to freeze zuchini? The best way to freeze zucchini is to store it in a freezer bag and then use it for literally any favourite recipe of yours. Sliced zucchini is the best when you are making soups, casseroles, sauces and smoothies. Zucchini can also be eaten raw, sliced or shredded, in a cold salad, as well as lightly cooked in hot salads, as in Thai or Vietnamese recipes.
Mature (larger sized) zucchini are well suited for cooking in bread. (reference 2) You can freeze the zucchini just as it is but it is way more advisable to blanch the zucchini first and then use it to enjoy a longer shelf life. Here is the step-by-step procedure of the best way to freeze zucchini.
Wash and rinse:
The first step is to wash zucchini thoroughly in order to get rid of any outside dirt or germs on the surface of the vegetable. Run the zucchini under the water and then rub the vegetable with a paper towel to thoroughly cleanse it.
Next, cut the stem out and remove the blossom ends as well. After that, cut the zucchini into ¼-inch-thick slices to use later for different recipes.
The next step is blanching. Blanching refers to the process of cooking a vegetable in a pot of boiling water and then immersing the vegetable in an ice bath right after taking it out of the boiling water. This process is actually effective in deactivating the enzymes which are responsible for turning the squash mushy.
Here’s how you can blanch your zucchini:
- Pour the zucchini slice into a pot of boiling water and cook it for more than 1 minute.
- Next, take the pieces out of the boiling water using a slotted spoon and immediately immerse them in an ice bath for a few minutes.
- Now rinse the zucchini well and dry it well using a paper towel or dish towel.
Freezing the slices:
Now that the process of blanching is over and the slices have been thoroughly dried, place them on a large baking sheet and then put the baking sheet into the freezer for 1-2 hours until the zucchini has turned firm and frozen.
The last step includes storing the frozen zucchini slices in a large gallon-sized ziplock bag. Make sure to remove as much as air possible from the ziplock bag. This frozen zucchini will be able to last for up to 3-4 months.
Now, let us help you store grated or shredded zucchini. Take a look at the list of steps mentioned below!
- Use a food processor or boxed grater to shred the zucchini.
- Use a cheesecloth to wring out the excess moisture from the shredded pieces as much as possible.
- Now, measure the zucchini in 1-cup portions and store them in 1-quart freezer-safe bags.
How Long Does Frozen Zucchini Last?
Can zucchini be frozen? Yes, surely it can be frozen. You just need to apply the right way to cut the zucchini into smaller pieces and store it in a ziplock bag. Now even though frozen zucchini is effective in increasing its shelf life but unfortunately frozen zucchini does not last forever. Frozen zucchini is the best to be used within three months of being frozen.
You can add these frozen zucchinis to any of your favourite recipes like soups, casseroles and pasta. Do you know that zucchini is 95% water? This is why it turns soft after you freeze and thaw it. It is a seasonal vegetable with nutritional and medical benefits and plays a positive role in human health and nutrition.
Zucchinis can be used for making low-carb smoothies as it is a great alternative to bananas and other high-sweet fruits and vegetables. (Reference 1) You can prepare delicious light summer meals and enjoy the taste and benefits of zucchini for a long time.
Q1. Can I freeze zucchini?
Ans. You can definitely freeze zucchini. The best way to freeze zucchini is by blanching it. At first blanch, it and then immerse it into an ice bath immediately. Freeze the zucchini in the freezer for 1-2 hours and then store it in ziplock bags to preserve it for 2-3 months.
Q2. How to freeze zucchini without blanching?
Ans. You can also freeze zucchini without blanching it. Just shred or grate it using a food processor instead of cutting it into slices. Then put those shredded pieces into the freezer and you are good to go!
Q3. What can you use frozen zucchini for?
Ans. You can keep the frozen zucchini for up to 3 months and use it in noodles, pasta, smoothies and soups.
- NCBI: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5537869/
- Research gate: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/335542665_CHARACTERISTICS_OF_ZUCCHINI/link/5d6cccc7a6fdcc547d721bac/download
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