Yes, You Can Freeze Fruits and Vegetables – It’s Easy to do and it’s Easy on Your Budget

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Yes, You Can Freeze Fruits and Vegetables – It’s Easy to do and it’s Easy on Your Budget

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Spring is here so I'm already planning on freezing some of the first early fresh garden goodies. If you don't have the space or the time to plant your own garden, you can take advantage of grocery store sales, friendly farmers who have an over abundant crop or even those eager beaver produce markets held in small towns and cities alike.

So, what's first? Asparagus and Rhubarb.  

Both are extremely easy to freeze and once you give it a try, you'll want to make this a yearly addition to your food storage. I can't begin to tell you how delicious the frozen Asparagus was during the winter and what a savings! Most grocery stores in my area were selling it out-of-season for $3.99 to $5.99 a pound - WOW! 

We had Rhubarb - Strawberry pies, cooked Rhubarb to use as a sauce for breakfast and Rhubarb Jam during the winter. I might also add that Rhubarb is difficult to find in grocery stores even when it is "in" season.

So, let's get started. 

Here's my recipe for freezing Rhubarb: (Our Rhubarb is the Ruby Red variety which is considered by many to be the best tasting)

Step 1. Pull or cut the rhubarb at the base of the stem.  Remove and discard the leaves.  Wash to remove any surface dirt and trim any undesirable spots.

 Step 2. Dry the rhubarb well and cut it into 1 to 1 ½ inch pieces.

 Step 3. Spread the cut pieces on a tray or cookie sheet and place in the freezer until the rhubarb pieces are frozen. Transfer the frozen rhubarb into freezer bags (I use the gallon size), label and freeze.

By using this method, you can take out the amount of rhubarb you need for a recipe and keep the remainder frozen until later.  This is called "Flash Freezing".

Now, here's how I freeze Asparagus.

1) Pick spears in the morning. They should be 6-8 inches tall and thicker than a pen or pencil. Larger, thick spears are tough without a lot of taste. If you're buying your asparagus for freezing it should be ripe and ready to cook.

2) Snap or cut off the bottom ends by holding the top and bottom and bending them until the stalk snaps. I usually cut off about 4 inches. Throw the bottom part in your compost or the trash.

3) Rinse any dirt off it. Pat it dry.

4) Leave the asparagus spears whole or cut it into pieces based on how you think you'll eat it later.

5) Spread the cut pieces on a tray or cookie sheet and place in the freezer until the Asparagus pieces are frozen. Transfer the frozen Asparagus into freezer bags (I use the gallon size), label and freeze. (Again, the Flash Freeze method).

NOTE: Frozen asparagus should be cooked from frozen, do not thaw it.

Freezing these early spring goodies takes very little time.   It is both economical and healthy to freeze food for later use.   There's nothing that compares with the taste of fresh frozen fruits and vegetables and you will be happy about the money you save with very little effort on your part. 

Spring doesn't just bring the Easter Bunny; it brings Rhubarb and Asparagus as well!  Yum-Yum.

Kimberly Johns, Debt Management Plan Customer with Leading Provider of Debt Relief, CareOne Services, Inc. Kimberly Johns

Kimberly is enrolled on the CareOne Debt Management Plan (DMP). Kimberly is very active in the Community Forums, some of you may recognize her Community user name; Tiquie. Recently retired, Kim shares how she and her husband manage the financial challenges of living on a fixed income in their home state of Illinois. The John's have found some really creative and fun ways to offset the limitations of a retirement income. Kimberly generously shares smart and tested tips in her A Straight Talk on Debt blog! Compensated Blogger for CareOne Debt Relief Services.

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  • I freeze everything. I buy peppers and onions and cut them into pieces to them stored them in the freezer. I even freeze the salad packets I get. They simply last a whole lot longer than if I didn't freeze them. Is certainly  highly economical. Also, if I cook a lot, I freeze it as well in individual containers that I can then microware and eat during the week. Freezing is key to everything and there isn't anything better than a home made frozen meal instead of a grocery frozen meal. That said, thanks for the tips. I'm not into Asparagus, but freezing things is a habit on my end. :)

  • Hi again PRBori!

    I also cook big and freeze the extras.  Freezing makes my life so much easier.  Happy to hear you have found this to be true as well.

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