Because of chemical enzymes in fresh produce that begin the spoilage process
soon after harvesting, it's best to freeze the freshest fruits and vegetables. The
better the quality of the produce you freeze, the better the outcome. Also
make sure that the produce is clean and is prepared for freezing in the way you
intend to use it. If you know that you will use frozen apples in a pie recipe for instance, you will want to freeze the
apples sliced and without the peels. For freezing vegetables, which are usually eaten cooked, you will want to blanch
the vegetables first, which is a process that will inactivate the enzymes in the vegetables and help destroy
microorganisms on the surface. The enzymes in fruit cause browning and loss of vitamin C. So instead of blanching,
the most common control is ascorbic acid. Using ascorbic acid when freezing fruit not only helps eliminate the
browning of the fruit, but also adds back the nutritive value of the vitamin C.
METHODS OF FREEZING FRUITS
Most fruits will have better flavor and texture if frozen using a sugar or syrup pack. Artificial sugar may be substituted
but will not yield a thick syrup or prevent browning of the fruit. Typically, unsweetened fruit will loose it's quality
faster that fruits packed in sugar.
Dry Pack- No sugar added. This method of freezing fruit works well with blueberries,cranberries, currants,
gooseberries and rhubarb. Fruit is first washed and dried. Place prepared fruit on a cookie sheet until solid. When fruit
is frozen, transfer to freezer container or freezer bag removing as much air as possible..
Sugar Pack- Sprinkle sugar over fruit and gently mix. Use 1/2 to 2/3 cups of sugar per quart of fruit. Let the mixture
sit for approximately 15 minutes allowing the juice to dissolve the sugar. Place in freezer container removing as much
air as possible.
Syrup Pack- Boil mixture of sugar and water, cool or chill mixture until clear before using. Cover sliced fruits, or whole
berries with just enough of the sugar syrup mixture to cover fruit. Approximately 1/3 to 1/2 cup for 1 1/2 cups of
sliced fruit or berries. A piece of parchment or wax paper may be used to hold fruit down under syrup mixture.
Because fruit will expand once frozen, allow extra headspace before freezing the container with fruit and syrup. Allow
1/2" per pint or 1" per quart of extra space.
% of Sugar
Cups of Sugar
Cups of Water
Yield of Syrup
4 1/2 Cups
4 3/4 Cups
5 1/3 Cups
* Some fruits will darken quickly when exposed to air and freezing. They may also lose flavor when thawed. One of
the best ways of preventing flavor loss and adding nutritive value at the same time is to use ascorbic acid (vitamin C)
on the fruit before freezing. Ascorbic acid can be purchased in drugstores or any place freezing items are sold. By
adding ascorbic acid to your syrup pack, sugar pack, or dry pack, your fruits such as apples, pears, peaches, and
apricots will retain their best color and flavor. Follow manufacturers instructions on the ascorbic acid for correct
amounts and guidelines.
Use the freshest fruit for freezing. Prepare the fruit as you intend to use it removing seeds, pits and
peels. Wash fruit thoroughly, and use ascorbic acid when necessary to prevent fruit from darkening.
Peaches or Nectarines
Blanch for 2 min. then cool. Use sugar pack or syrup pack.
If apricots are not peeled, heat in boiling water for 1/2 min. to keep skins from
toughening. Use sugar pack, syrup pack or dry pack.
Freeze in peel which will darken when frozen but not harm banana, or peel banana and
place in freezer container or freezer bag removing as much air as possible. Banana can be
sliced or pureed before freezing as well.
Wash berries and syrup pack or sugar pack. Best served partially frozen.
Wash berries and tray freeze and dry pack. You can also sugar pack Best served partially
Wash cherries and use sugar pack, syrup pack or dry pack.
Wash cranberries and use dry pack or syrup pack.
Wash figs and peel if desired. Use syrup pack or dry pack.
Use seedless grapes and dry pack or syrup pack.
Remove seeds and peel, cut into cubes. Syrup pack and serve slightly frozen.
Peel, slice and syrup pack.
Wash, peel and syrup pack. Best if lightly cooked in boiling medium syrup for 1-2 minutes.
Cool before freezing.
Peel, core, cut and freeze. May also syrup pack.
Wash, tray freeze and dry pack. May also sugar or syrup pack.
Wash and sugar pack or syrup pack. May also tray freeze and dry pack.
Wash and sugar pack or syrup pack.