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Is there a RIGHT way to freeze fruit? So that it doesn't become wet & mushy once defrosted?

Froze last summer's peaches, apricots, strawberries, rhubarb, raspberries and blueberries. So far the peaches are kinda mush, and though the strawberry rhubarb pie tastes good, it was definitely very wet and lacking in ... non-mushyness. Can't think of the word I'm looking for...

asked by QueenOfGreen over 3 years ago
6 answers 2453 views
Dscn3372
added over 3 years ago

Fruit contains a lot of water, and when you freeze it that water becomes tiny, sharp ice crystals that puncture the cell walls of the fruit. Then when you defrost it, the water leaks out. Not much you can do, but some fruits do freeze better than others. Blueberries are the sturdiest of your list, and don't collapse on thawing. I wouldn't ever expect the defrosted fruit to look like fresh, so use it where it's mixed in or baked into something. I use frozen raspberries and blueberries in many things, but save the rhubarb for jams or compotes because it is going to fall apart. Maybe bake pies with thawed and drained fruit? You could reduce the water/juice that drains off.

Burnt_offering
added over 3 years ago

I find that it also helps to place the individual pieces of fruit on a piece of parchment paper and spritz them lightly with water and place the tray in the freezer to let each piece freeze individually, and THEN put them in a freezer bag or container. The individual coating of ice keeps them from falling apart a little better, or getting smushed together too much.

Img_1879_-_version_2
added over 3 years ago

I agree with Burnt Offerings with one tweak. I wash the fruit, then dry it completely before spreading it on a baking sheet and then freezing it. Then I put it in a self-sealing plastic bag or air-tight container. This has worked well for me for berries of all kinds, most stone fruit and other assorted fruit. One type of fruit that just won't freeze well is melon--too much water.

2011-03-07_18-28-41_870
added over 3 years ago

I agree with Burnt Offerings and lorinarlock - freeze individually. My mother always stores her berries like this but puts them into quart glass mason jars, that way they don't get mashed if something gets put on top of them, plus you can easily see what's in the jar. For rhubarb, I cut into small pieces and mix with sugar, as for my rhubarb pie recipe. Then I put into an air tight container, freeze, pop out of container, then process in my FoodSaver. Defrost and continue with the recipe. This way I have almost instant pie any time of the year!

Default-small
added over 3 years ago

Your answer is canning, jams, jellys, preserves or dehydration. I wouldn't expect anything positive from freezing any fruits with the exception of berries.

Artdecowoman-main_full_green
added over 3 years ago

Thanks all!