Can you freeze beets? It’s not uncommon to find yourself craving turnips when they’re out of season. To preserve fresh turnips from your garden, consider freezing them. Reap the benefits of selling at farmers markets or supermarkets by following these simple steps for freezing beets.
For best results, only the freshest beets should be selected for freezing, as the somewhat limp beets can become mushy during freezing. The ideal beets are a deep, even red color and contain crisp stems and leaves.
Examine the beets carefully for signs of rot and trim away any damaged pieces to ensure you’re only working with the highest quality specimens. While beets of any size can be frozen, the ideal size for freezing is around two to three inches in diameter. Remember this number if you buy beets that you plan to freeze later.
Although frozen turnips can be kept almost indefinitely, you should consume them within 12 months of freezing if you want to fully enjoy their flavor. Below is a guide on how to freeze beets:
How to freeze beets
Preparation of the beets
Using a sharp knife, trim the beets top and bottom, leaving about ½ to an inch on both the stems and roots. This keeps them an even color when cooked. Then gently scrub them in a sink full of cold water to remove dirt and debris. Drain them by placing them on paper towels to soak up excess water.
Boil the beets before freezing
Raw beets are not suitable for freezing; therefore they must be boiled first. Place your beets in a large cauldron and cover lightly with water. Let them cook for about 30 to 45 minutes until they are quite tender but not mushy. Drain and rinse the beets, then discard the liquid.
Allow the beets to cool sufficiently so that you can remove the peel and cut off the roots and stems. If the beets are thoroughly cooked, the skins should slide off easily by hand. Cut them into equal pieces or leave them whole if they are very small beets.
Read Also: Can you freeze leeks?
Packing the beets for freezing
Freeze beets by placing them in clean freezer containers, Ziploc storage bags, or vacuum-sealed bags. Be sure to remove excess air from the bags as this will allow your beets to stay fresher longer. Label them with their contents and packing date before storing them in your freezer.
How do you defrost frozen beets?
Frozen beets can be thawed at room temperature and served cold, or they can be cooked on the stovetop in a pan full of water. Frozen beets make a great side dish and are also great for
Frozen turnips make a great side dish and are also ideal for soups, stews and casseroles. Because they freeze well, there shouldn’t be any noticeable differences in flavor, color, or texture compared to canned beets.
Surprisingly, beets freeze well and require very little upfront preparation before putting them in the freezer. The next time you encounter an abundance of fresh beets, stock up on these vegetables. Now that you know how to freeze beets, just pop the veggies in the freezer!