Undoubtedly, you can freeze zucchini without boiling or cooking it! You will need to grate or shred the zucchini before freezing instead of chopping it into slices. This method of storing it will help you save a lot of time.
The quickest & simplest way to preserve fresh zucchini if you have more than you can eat is to freeze it. Today, I’ll demonstrate how to freeze zucchini (in just a few minutes!) and how to use it after it has been frozen.
Can Zucchini be Frozen without being Blanched?
You very certainly can! Using this technique, you can save time by avoiding boiling a large pot of water before performing a water bath. The trick is that you want to shred it rather than chop it up. By doing this, you can freeze zucchini without blanching it beforehand!
We’ve been using this technique to freeze zucchini for years, and it’s my favorite. We enjoy being able to take a bag of shredded zucchini out of my freezer because we’re known to make homemade zucchini bread every month of the year!
How to Freeze Zucchini without Blanching?
The steps below can be used to freeze zucchini without blanching it first:
- Slice the zucchini to the appropriate thickness after washing.
- Slices should be spread out on a parchment-lined baking sheet before being placed in the freezer.
- Slices should be frozen before being placed in an airtight container or plastic bag and kept in the freezer.
It should be noted that freezing zucchini without blanching may cause it to thaw with a somewhat softer texture, but it is still perfectly safe to consume.
How to Use Frozen Zucchini in Cooking?
In salads or stir-fries, frozen zucchini doesn’t work as well as fresh zucchini. However, soups, spaghetti sauces, and casseroles where you anticipate the vegetables to be a little soft are the best meals to utilize frozen zucchini.
The zucchini doesn’t need to be thawed before being added to your recipe.
How to Freeze Shredded Zucchini without Blanching?
Step 1: Get your Zucchini Ready
Pick out your zucchinis first. Before the seeds grow too big, the smallest to medium-sized ones are the best to utilize.
These squash are still easy to cut and work with because of their sensitive flesh and skin. They also have the finest flavor!
After washing and drying the zucchini, trim the ends. It should be cut into lengths of about 5 inches, then again cut lengthwise.
Utilizing a spoon, remove any seeds from the middle.
Step 2: Shred the Zucchini
You can use a food processor or a cheese grater to shred them. Over the years, I’ve processed a lot of zucchini, and I have to say that using a food processor with a shredding blade is considerably simpler.
Then, feed the zucchini into the food processor while running on low speed after cutting the zucchini into pieces that would fit.
If your food processor doesn’t have a shredding blade, you can use the regular blade and pulse the ingredients until they are the desired size.
Step 3: Package into Freezer Bags
Zucchini should be divided into freezer bags, with any air removed and sealed.
Because most recipes need 2 cups, I freeze my shredded zucchini in 2-cup portions. I only need to take out two bags if I need more.
Ensure that the bags are labeled with the date, contents, and quantity.
Do you Need to Blanch Zucchini Before Freezing?
What you intend to do with the frozen zucchini will determine how long you want to store it.
Food enzymes that would ordinarily cause it to degrade and spoil are killed by blanching. Blanching can also retain the product’s color and texture crisper and more vibrant after freezing.
We never blanch the shredded zucchini before freezing it. Why? Because they are cut into such thin slices, they frequently become mush after blanching.
I use frozen, shredded zucchini to make zucchini bread, muffins, and tomato sauce.
We want the shredded zucchini to be tender in these meals, so blanching is not ideal for these applications. Until the following crop, I’ve had no trouble keeping unblanched, shredded zucchini in my freezer for a year.
On the other hand, blanching zucchini slices before using them in a casserole or soup will help them keep their shape better. Be sure to blanch in unsalted water only.
How to Freeze Sliced or Cubed Zucchini?
I blanch zucchini slices or chunks before freezing them to prevent freezer burn. This enables them to maintain their form and remain fresher in the freezer. I also discovered that blanched zucchini slices maintain their firmness better than unblanched.
Step 1: Prepare the Zucchini
After washing and drying the zucchini, trim the ends. You can cut them into circles of any size; I prefer 1/2-inch rounds.
Step 2: Blanch the Zucchini
Obtain a full boil in a big saucepan of water. Sliced zucchini should be placed in a wire basket or blanched before being dipped into the boiling water. They had a 3-minute timer.
After the allotted time has passed, remove the zucchini and drop it into a tub of icy water. This puts an end to cooking.
As the zucchini cools, stir it around a little. If the water gets too warm, add additional ice or cold water to cool it down.
After the zucchini has cooled for 3 to 5 minutes, thoroughly dry it. You’ll want to remove as much water as possible to prevent it from adhering together.
They can be dried off effectively by setting them on a tea towel.
Step: 3 Freeze
Remove any excess air, place the zucchini in freezer bags, label them, and freeze them. The bags would vary between 2-cup and 4-cup sizes. I prefer to package them in the serving quantities I use most frequently for our household.
Tips for Freezing Zucchini
- Flatten the Bags Out.
Make careful to arrange the bags in a single layer, flat, in your freezer. They will freeze more quickly, and stacking them will be simpler.
You can arrange the bags in your freezer once they are completely frozen.
- Layers of Freeze
If blanched zucchini is not well dried before freezing, it will cling together in the bag.
If you have adequate freezer space, arrange the zucchini slices on a baking sheet covered with a silicone mat and freeze them thoroughly.
After that, weigh and bag the zucchini slices as needed.
How Long does Frozen Zucchini Last?
One of the simplest ways to handle the summer squash oversupply is to freeze zucchini. This is based on testing to determine how well vegetables freeze. The good news is that your frozen zucchini will last 8–12 months with no work.
This means you can freeze a lot of zucchini without worrying about eating it right away.
How to Defrost Zucchini?
It is time to remove the zucchini from the freezer and begin cooking. Here’s how to quickly and easily defrost zucchini.
- Delete the frozen zucchini from the freezer. This 5-month-old zucchini is displayed to demonstrate how well it retains its freshness and color.
- The zucchini should be defrosted naturally overnight in the refrigerator or quickly in the microwave.
- After it has defrosted, put the zucchini in a colander and give it a gentle press. We must ensure we remove all the additional water from your zucchini because it likely contains some added water, especially if we plan to bake with it.
As you can see, we squeezed quite an amount of water from it!
- Your fresh zucchini is now defrosted and ready for recipes!
Can you Freeze Zucchini Slices?
Better than freezing whole zucchini is freezing them in slices. In this manner, they will take up less room in the freezer and, once thawed, be prepared for cooking.
However, zucchini possesses enzymes that will gradually rob it of its nutrients over time, much like many other vegetables. The veggie will also get softer and lose its color. The zucchini should therefore be blanched first.
In reality, blanching is nothing more than a brief immersion in hot water, followed by a plunge into freezing water. The enzymes and any more bacteria on your zucchini will be eliminated throughout the blanching procedure. After blanching, you’re ready to freeze the vegetables.
Freeze them after portioning them out into pint- or quart-sized freezer baggies. Simply put, it makes them simpler to store, and when properly positioned in the freezer, they take up less room.
Should you Thaw Frozen Zucchini Before Using it?
Depending on how you intend to use it!
- If using shredded zucchini in baking, thaw it beforehand! Before incorporating into batters, defrost, drain, and allow room temperature.
- Don’t defrost zucchini before adding it to sauces, soups, stews, or smoothies! It can be added right away to whatever you’re cooking.
- Thaw it if you’re making zucchini boats! After defrosting, remove any extra moisture, fill, and bake.
Can you Freeze Grated Zucchini for Bread?
Zucchini that has been grated is best frozen by adding it to ice cube trays. The frozen cubes can be kept in zip-top bags after freezing.
They work well as a spread on sandwiches. Because it keeps the zucchini wet, you can use frozen grated zucchini for bread.
If you let them stand for at least 10 minutes before freezing them, you’ll be able to prepare the best-tasting bread. Additionally, freezing aids in keeping the nutrients in the zucchini intact.
What Health Benefits does Zucchini have?
Numerous essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants are abundant in zucchini. It has a lot of fiber and few calories. Fiber is crucial for digestion and may reduce your risk of developing several GI problems.
Is Zucchini Healthier than a Cucumber?
Regarding vitamin B and C content, zucchini is superior to cucumbers. Both veggies have a similar quantity of calcium. However, zucchini is higher in potassium and iron than cucumbers. Additionally, zucchini contains more protein and fiber. Zucchini, on the other hand, tastes great roasted or stir-fried.
How do you Make Frozen Zoodles, Not Soggy?
In a covered skillet, steam the frozen zucchini noodles for about 5 minutes or until they are al dente. As I’ve previously indicated, the secret to great zucchini noodles is to cook them to a firm but the tender state. We do not want to cook them to the point of being mush.
Zucchini can be frozen quickly and easily. Your zucchini won’t go to waste ever again because you know how to freeze them like a pro chef. In the end, you can eat delicious foods made with zucchini all year round! We hope our guide will help you freeze your zucchini more easily and quickly.