Assorted frozen vegetables

Freeze Food for Easier Preservation

Freezing is one of the most common and trusted food preservation techniques. A simple and quick process, freezing food slows the loss of nutritive qualities and prevents food spoilage. Once defrosted, frozen foods are similar to fresh foods in texture, flavor and color, making it the most popular method of food preservation.

What You Need to Freeze

Jars for Freezing:

It’s important to note that not all jars are freezer-safe. Jars with tapered sides or straight sides are freezer safe; shouldered jars are not. This Jar Selection Guide should also help in choosing a free-safe jar.

wide mouth pint jar with a check mark
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regular mouth pint jar
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Simply Frozen in Eight Steps

  1. Review recipe and instructions.
  2. Gather equipment and ingredients.
  3. Choose the storage containers appropriate for the frozen food. Wash, rinse and dry containers.
  4. Tips Image

    Use rigid containers for foods that are liquid or semi-liquid at room temperature and flexible wrap for foods that are solid at room temperature.

  5. Prep fresh produce and other quality ingredients according to the recipe. Most vegetables and some fruits benefit from pretreatment techniques like blanching.
  6. Tips Image

    Most vegetables and some fruits benefit from pretreatment techniques like blanching. Blanching (heating in steam or water for a specific time, then cooling quickly) sets color, slows enzyme action, and kills many spoilage microorganisms.

  7. Pack prepared food in appropriate freezer containers or wrap with freezer packaging according to the recipe instructions. For rigid containers, leave ½-inch headspace to allow for expansion of liquids.
  8. Label with the date and name of the product.
  9. Freeze in a single layer near the coldest part of the freezer.
  10. Tips Image

    Stack only after food is completely frozen.

  11. Store at 0°F in the freezer for the recommended length of time.

Try it out

Strawberry-Blueberry Freezer Jam

Makes about 6 (½-PT.) Jars

Ingredients:

strawberry jam with strawberries in from of the jar

Directions:

  1. Pulse blueberries in a food processor until finely chopped, stopping to scrape down sides as needed. Place in a medium bowl. Pulse strawberries in food processor until finely chopped, stopping to scrape down sides as needed. Add to blueberries in bowl. Stir in sugar; let stand 15 minutes.
  2. Gradually stir in pectin; stir 3 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes.
  3. Spoon into jars, leaving ½ inch headspace. Center lid on jars. Apply bands and adjust loosely. Once jam is frozen, adjust bands to fingertip-tight. Store in freezer up to 1 year. Thaw in refrigerator. Refrigerate after thawing, and use within 3 weeks.

Download a printable step-by-step freezing guide here.