How To Freeze The Carrots: A Simple Guide To Doing It
Did you just buy a lot of carrots and realize that you won’t be able to cook some of them? I am guilty of the same—buying a lot of vegetables only to come to the realization that I won’t be able to use all of them. But the good news is that you can store them for future use. In this article, I will teach you how to freeze the carrots easily.
Why we need to freeze the carrots?
You may wonder why you need to freeze the carrots. Everything you can do which is just putting them in the fridge, right?
There’s no problem with refrigerating carrots, but only if you intend to use the vegetables after a few days or even a week. Beyond that, then you should freeze the orange vegetable instead.
The problem with putting carrots in the fridge is that refrigerators remove moisture when cooling the food. The dry circulating air in the fridge sucks out the moisture from foods like carrots. Thus foods dry out or lose their freshness after several days of being stored in the fridge.
On the other hand, freezing carrots can keep them fresh for a long time with some experts saying it can last for 6 to 8 months.
You can also ‘save’ carrots that are about to expire by freezing them. Doing so would enable you to use them in another recipe later on.
How to freeze the carrots
Don’t just put the carrots in the freezer. I suggest that you blanch them first. This is a technique that can kill the action of enzymes which can damage nutrients and affect the color and flavor of the carrots while frozen.
In this technique you will also be removing the raw edges of the vegetable making it ready for salad preparation and other dishes. And after blanching, you can immediately freeze the carrots you bought and use them after up to 8 months.
Here’s a step by step guide on how to blanch the carrots.
- Choose fresh, medium-length carrots. To be able to freeze carrots for a long time and still be able to use them, I suggest you pick young and tender carrots.
- Rinse the carrots in cold or lukewarm water.
- Peel the carrots. Trim both ends and cut it into smaller pieces. I usually cut them into ¼ inch cubes. But you can cut them into whatever shape or length you prefer. You can use a knife for this or a vegetable peeler. If you have small carrots, there’s no need to cut them.
- Boil water in a large pot. Put the sliced carrots on it and let them sit for about 3 minutes. For whole baby carrots, give it 5 minutes to boil. Allow the water to boil for the next set of carrots as you cool and drain the first bunch.
- Cool the drained bunch of carrots in a large bowl filled with cold water, preferably with ice. A good rule of thumb to follow is to cool the carrots for the same amount of time spent in boiling them. So if you blanched the carrots for 3 minutes, cool them for 3 minutes as well.
- Get a resealable vacuum bag like this. Removal of air is critical in keeping carrots fresh and safe for months, and this bag can help you achieve that by creating an airtight barrier around the vegetable. It can lock in freshness and prevent the carrots from spoiling. This bag is also safe and strong enough for freezing.
- Label the bags so you would know when you blanched the carrots inside it. Place the carrots in the vacuum bag and pop them into a freezer or on the quick freeze shelf.
I’ve been asked many times why some frozen carrots appear rubbery after being thawed and cooked. It could be due to two things—the carrots were too old in the first place, or they were overcooked.
What to do with frozen carrots
But after freezing the carrots and keeping them in the freezer for months, you may wonder—what can you do with them?
You can make the frozen carrots into a cake. Or perhaps juice them. Or use them in a soup.
Whatever you decide to do with the carrots, you don’t have to thaw them. This goes for most frozen vegetables—you can skip the thaw. This is particularly true when steaming or adding the carrot to a cooked stew. Adding the frozen carrot is better because the color and flavor are retained.
Carrots are very nutritious and flavorful which makes them one of the most popular vegetables in the world. They’re very cheap too so it really makes sense to buy them in bunches.
But buying in bunches means you may not be able to use all of them. By blanching, you can keep the carrots fresh enough for use at a later date.
What do you think of this article? Let me know in the comments section below.