How to Freeze Berries to Keep Them Fresh
Freezing berries for the winter is a good alternative to jams and it allows you to retain the vitamins the berries contain. According to studies, the amount of vitamins in frozen vegetables, fruits, and berries is about the same as in fresh ones, and sometimes even higher.
We at 5-Minute Crafts often enjoy berries during the cold time of the year and we want to share some ways to freeze berries to keep them fresh and tasty.
General freezing rules
✔ Check all the berries and throw away all the spoiled, damaged, not fresh, and overripe ones. These berries are not right for freezing.
✔ Wash the berries in tap water. Let them fully dry on a paper towel.
✔ Tender berries, like raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries shouldn’t be washed in a stream of water. Instead, put them in a strainer and into a pot of clean, cold water. Move the strainer around. Get rid of the water you used to wash the berries in.
✔ Remove the sepals in strawberries, the peduncles in raspberries, and the same in currants.
✔ Remove the pits from the berries that have them (like cherries).
✔ Freeze the berries in small separate plastic containers (they should state that they can be used for freezing) or plastic Ziploc bags.
✔ Store the frozen berries in the back part of the freezer so that they don’t thaw when you open the freezer door.
✔ It is not a good idea to freeze unfrozen berries again. The appearance and the quality really take a hit when you freeze and unfreeze something more than once.
✔ Use the frozen berries within 8-12 months. The berries that are stored for a longer time are safe to eat but their taste, color, and texture might change.
Way № 1: Freezing entire berries
✔ You can freeze most berries this way, including cherries, currants, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, and others.
✔ Check all the berries.
✔ Put them into a plastic container.
✔ Put the container in the freezer.
Tip: You can use sea buckthorn berries you freeze this way to make sea buckthorn berry tea. Other berries are great as a fillings in pies, and for smoothies.
Wash № 2: Freezing mash
✔ If the berries are really juicy or a little beat-up, it’s better to mash them.
✔ Check the berries and wash them. If needed, remove the peduncles.
✔ Put them into a blender and add sugar. 150 grams of sugar for every 0.5 kilograms.
✔ Pour the berry mash into molds. Freeze the mash and then take it out of the molds and put it into plastic bags and storage containers.
Tip: Frozen berry mash is great for cocktails, yogurts, smoothies, berry sauces, and filling for pies and buns.
Way № 3: Water freezing
✔ This type of freezing is great for small berries.
✔ Put small or cut berries into ice trays. You can add mint leaves if you want. Pour cold water into the trays. The water should cover the surface of the berries completely.
✔ Put the ice tray into the freezer until the water freezes.
✔ Put the cubes into a plastic container or into plastic bags.
Tip: It’s better to use this type of freezing to decorate drinks or add the cubes into lemonades and cocktails.
Way № 4: Freezing in halves
✔ This is great for big berries and fruits, like strawberries, apricots, and plums.
✔ Cut the washed berries into halves.
✔ Put them on a wooden board with the cut up.
✔ Place the board into the freezer.
✔ When the berries get solid, put them into a plastic container for further storage.
Tip: This type of freezing is great for making berry jelly with berry halves inside and other desserts. Aside from that, you can use these berries and fruits for smoothies and pie fillings.
Way № 5: Freezing in sugar
✔ Put clean and dry berries into a plastic container.
✔ Add sugar. 1 kg of berries should have 100 grams of sugar. Close the container with a lid and put it into the freezer.
Tip: This type of freezing is good for making different desserts, smoothies, and pies.