In case you hadn’t yet heard, blueberries are (right now) at their peak. That means (right now) is the time to invest a (very little) effort, so that you’ll be able to enjoy these delicious and nutritious berries for months to come.
Freezing blueberries is a great way to preserve them. Frozen blueberries are quite versatile. They can be eaten straight out of the freezer for a cold treat. They can be thrown into a blender for smoothies. They can even be used for baking. (Think: homemade pancakes.)
By looking around, you may be able to purchase larger quantities of peak blueberries. For example, my grocery sells 5-pound boxes and the farm stand that I frequent currently has 10-pound boxes. So far this year, I’ve frozen 10 pounds, which equaled about two gallon zip-top bags. (I plan to freeze another 10 pounds this weekend.)
You can either wash the berries before freezing, or you can wash after freezing but before using. I choose to wash them before freezing, because 1) I like to get the “work” over with and 2) I’m afraid that adding another step later would deter me from grabbing them as often.
How to Freeze Blueberries:
- Rinse them in a colander and gently shake away excess water
- Spread onto a kitchen towel; discard any stems or damaged fruit
- (Optional) Cover with a second kitchen towel for a few minutes to absorb water from the tops
- Allow to air dry 15 – 30 minutes, until mostly dry
- Transfer to parchment-lined, rimmed baking trays and place into freezer
- After fruit is firm (not necessarily frozen solid), move to a zip-top freezer bag
- Put in freezer to enjoy later
That’s all there is to it! It really is *that* easy.
Here are a few tips:
- Set a timer to check the freezer beginning at around 30 minutes; leaving the berries in too long may cause them to shrivel a bit
- Stand the zip-top bag up in the colander to keep it from tipping as it’s filled
- Form a funnel with the parchment paper, to quickly transfer frozen berries to the bag
- If you have a deep freezer, your blueberries will stay beautiful well into the winter… maybe even until spring