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Ginger is one of those spices that is so strong you’d think it wouldn’t be good with anything yet is actually incredibly good with almost anything. It works well with spicy dishes, refreshing beverages, sweet desserts and more. And, best of all, it only takes a small amount for big results. The only problem is that small amount leaves a much larger amount left over. So, to avoid wasting a good herb, we want to know can you freeze ginger?
Well, can you freeze ginger? You absolutely can and it freezes very well. So well, in fact, you likely won’t be able to tell a difference in ginger that is fresh and ginger that has been frozen (if done properly). You can freeze ginger root whole or in slices/cubes, without blanching, or you can make ginger paste and freeze that in ice cube trays. Any option is easy and will extend the shelf (fridge?) life of this wonderful seasoning from 3 or 4 days up to 6 months and beyond. You don’t even need to thaw it out as it’s much easier to peel and grate frozen solid than it is fresh. The only downside, if you can even call it that, is that it will stay good and safe to use but will decline in flavor after around 6 months.
Now that we know how easy it is to preserve ginger, let’s keep reading to find out the exact easy steps!
Can You Freeze Ginger?
You can freeze ginger and there’s a myriad of reasons to do so. One reason is it will make your ginger last a whole lot longer so that you don’t just use a small amount and then have to toss the rest.
Ginger root, or at least what we refer to as ginger root, is not actually a root at all. It is a rhizome, which is basically a type of stem that happens to grow underground. The roots of the ginger plant do grow from the rhizome, but we do not eat them.
What we recognize as the ginger root you see in the store, you may notice, sort of resembles a hand. Just so you know, the entire chunk you would buy or harvest happens to be called the “hand”. And, if you haven’t guess already, the pieces that jut out from the center are called “fingers” or “knobs” and usually grow about an inch or 2 in length. The short, 1 inch fingers are even called “thumbs”.
Ginger is a root vegetable used across the globe in an array of different cultures. It has it’s obvious culinary and nutritional appeal, but it is also widely used for it’s medicinal and health related benefits. Many cultures believe ginger is able to be used for just about anything ranging from a powerful anti-bacterial all the way to a shield against common cold and flu symptoms.
Now, some of the health claims of ginger root may be old wives tales, but there are some legitimate, science-backed, benefits.
For example, ginger has been proven to help alleviate inflammation which can reduce certain types of pain. It is also well regarded as a natural alternative to anti-nausea medication. Ginger root is even being studied right now to explore it’s potential as a cancer treatment.
|Time To Freeze||12 to 24 (deep freeze)|
|Time to Thaw||no need to thaw|
|Uses||anything that normally calls for ginger|
|Freezer Life||up to 6 months|
*can last longer but loses flavor
Frozen Vs Non-frozen
|Freezer Life||Fridge Life|
|up to 6 months|
*can last longer but loses flavor
|3 to 4 days|
You are going to need the following supplies:
Ginger is one of the easier foods to freeze. Today we will go over how to freeze ginger whole, sliced or cubed, and as ginger paste. Unlike other herbs, like cilantro and mint, there’s no need to blanch or even flash freeze.
Let’s get into the step by step guide.
How to freeze ginger
Freezing whole ginger
To freeze a whole ginger root all you need to do is stick it in a freezer bag, label it with the contents, freeze date, and use by date. Then stick it in the freezer.
That’s really all there is to it. If you like, you can peel it before hand. But ginger will actually peel more easily when frozen since it is more rigid. Additionally, you can simply snap of a knob from the hand whenever you need some instead of thawing the entire piece.
Freezing slices or cubes
If you regularly make dishes using ginger, you may have a good idea of how much you need for any given recipes. If you like, you can peel and cut the ginger prior to freezing into the appropriate portion sizes you need.
After you finish cutting it, all you do is follow the same instructions as freezing it whole. Place all of the cut pieces into a labeled freezer bag and stick them in a freezer.
How to make and freeze ginger paste
So this final method is not quite as easy as freezing whole or in pieces. It is, however, still pretty dang easy!
Ginger paste is very popular because of it’s versatility. It is used in many entree’s but also teas, cocktails, and certain desserts. Ginger paste is also preferred over ginger powder because you end up using about half of the amount of paste to powder in most recipes.
To make and freeze ginger paste just follow the steps below.
- Clean all of the dirt and grime from the ginger root in your sink
- Use a vegetable peeler to take off all of the skin
- You can break pieces off while you do this to get those not-so-easy-to-get crevices
- After peeling, break up the ginger into smaller pieces so they can easily fit and move around in your food processor
- Use the pulse/manual function to chop the ginger into a paste
- most times you don’t need anything extra but you can add small amounts of water a bit at a time if the ginger is too dry
- Once you have a good thick paste you have 2 options; individual ginger paste pods or a large flat chunk of paste
- In our opinion, the paste pods are much more functional and easy to use but freezing the full batch in a single flattened bag will save on space
- Ginger Paste Pods
- Scoop about a tablespoon or so of ginger paste into the reservoirs of an ice cube tray.
- Place the ice cube tray in the freezer overnight so they can freeze solid
- Pop the pods out and place them in a labeled freezer bag, squeeze out all of the air, and put them back in the freezer for long term storage
- Freezer Bag
- Scoop all of the ginger paste from the food processor into a labeled freezer bag
- Squeeze out as much air as you can
- flatten the bag as much as possible
- place the bag into the freezer on a flat surface for about 24 hours
- After the first 24 hours, it should be frozen enough to move into a more convenient location