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When we plant our garden we almost always plant too much. We end up with way more berries than we can eat in a single season. Fortunately, we learned how to freeze raspberries so they can last us all the way until the next berry season!
You actually have a couple methods for freezing raspberries; whole or pureed. Both food preservation techniques are pretty simple. Essentially, all the steps boil down to clean, freeze (or puree first), eat. We will, of course get into more details as we go further.
Steps for how to freeze raspberries
We love the versatility of berries. Regardless of if they are blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, or raspberries, they have a million and one uses. You can put them in oatmeal, on top of pancakes, blend them in a smoothie, or eat them plain, just to name a few.
What’s even better, is you can preserve them using the same techniques! That’s right, if you have too many blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, etc, you can freeze them and have garden fresh berries all year around.
Frozen raspberries, in particular, are perfect for giving whatever you are eating a perfectly blended sweet and sour kick. The add a little more flavor to waffles and can give your breakfast smoothie the extra jump you need to get your day started.
We will cover two methods of freezing today; freezing whole berries and freezing raspberry puree (but not the kind you find in a second hand store).
You are going to need the following supplies:
- raspberries (of course)
- cookie sheet (for freezing whole)
- blender or food processor (for puree)
- ice cube trays (for puree)
- measuring cup
- freezer bags
- sharpie or marker
Freezing whole berries
Let’s start out with the easiest method; freezing whole berries.
Once you have harvested your raspberries you will want to gather them into a colander large enough to hold them all. Put the colander in your sink and run cold water over them. Use your hands to move the berries around and get off any unwanted dirt, bugs, or anything else you do not want to preserve with your food.
Now you want to dry your raspberries completely. You can do this by laying them out on some paper towels. You can also place them in a second colander, slightly raised to allow air flow to dry them. Whichever method you use, you will want to make sure they are as dry as possible.
Take out your cookie sheet and arrange a single layer of raspberries. You can pack as many as you like into the cookie sheet just make sure that it’s a single layer and they are not stacked or piled up.
Now place the cookie sheet in the freezer and leave for a few hour (we like to do this at night so they can sit overnight).
Once a few hours has passed (or you’ve woken up) your berries should all be frozen. Now all you need to do is portion them out however you like and add them into freezer bags. Make sure to label the bags with a Sharpie noting the contents, quantity, and date of freezing.
Puree your raspberries
Freezing pureed raspberries is really good if you like to make smoothies, sorbets, and those sorts of snacks.
This is the same as freezing whole raspberries. You will want to pick them and clean them in a colander under cold running water. Make sure to massage the berries enough to allow good water coverage and remove any undesirable debris.
Here is where we start to diverge. Instead of drying your berries, toss them all in a blender or food processor. Set it to the puree (sometimes they will have a smoothie setting) and let it do it’s thing until they are all blended together.
Pour your blended raspberries into your ice cube trays. Place the trays into the freezer and allow to sit for a few hours or overnight.
Once they have all frozen simply pop the raspberry cubes out of the tray and put them in a freezer bag. When you are are ready to use them you can toss them straight into the blender for your smoothie. It’s super easy and delicious!
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are a few common questions about freezing raspberries.
How long can you keep raspberries in the freezer?
You can leave frozen raspberries, both whole and pureed, in the freezer for up to a year. They may still be safe to eat after that but they will definitely start to degrade in taste, texture, and quality. Remember to always follow FDA guidelines on food preservation safety.
How do you defrost frozen raspberries?
When you’re ready to use your raspberries you have a couple options. You can leave them in the fridge overnight to allow them to slowly thaw. This is time consuming and can also make them soggy. You can also just munch on them frozen. This is the quickest method but can be tough on your teeth and not an enjoyable experience.
The best method is to put your berries in a bowl and fill it with cold water. Then sit the bowl on your counter and wait a few minutes. Test the berries and see if they are still frozen or if they have thawed. Replace the water and test as needed until they are completely unfrozen but still firm. Too much water or soaking for too long can make the berries water logged and soggy.