How To: Freeze Strawberries

strawberry patch, McDonough GAWhen you have more strawberries than you can eat…freeze them and enjoy them all year long!Strawberries are easy to freeze. You can use a dry-sugar or a syrup pack. The dry-sugar pack is especially easy and gives the best flavor and color for sliced or crushed berries.  For whole frozen berries a syrup pack is recommended because it produces a plump, well-shaped berry after thawing. For special sugar-free diets, strawberries can be frozen unsweetened, but they will not be as high in quality as sugar- or syrup-packed berries.
Twelve pounds or 8 quarts of fresh strawberries will yield approximately 13 pints of frozen berries.  No matter which type of pack you choose to use, follow these general directions for preparing and packaging strawberries for freezing:
  • Use only firm, fully ripe berries.
  • To avoid bruising and soaking the berries, wash only a few at a time in cold water.
  • Drain on absorbent paper or in a colander or sieve.
  • Remove the hulls with the tip of a floating blade peeler.
  • Chill the fruit in ice water to lower its temperature for fast freezing.

When packaging for freezing:

  • Do not fill containers completely; allow a head space of ½” for pints, 1/4″ for 11/2 pints, and I” for quarts.
  • Seal containers and label with the name of the product and the date frozen.
  • Freeze promptly, then store at 0 degree F or below.

Dry-Sugar Pack

  • Halve, quarter, or slice clean berries into a bowl or shallow pan. If desired, berries may be crushed rather than sliced.
  • Sprinkle sugar over berries, using 1/3 to 3/4 cup sugar for each quart of fruit.
  • Gently turn berries over and over until the sugar is thoroughly dissolved.
  • Package and freeze.

Syrup Pack

Make a syrup using 11/4 cups water to each cup sugar. Dissolve the sugar in either cold or hot water; if hot water is used, be sure to chill the syrup before using. Use about ½ to 1/3 cup of syrup for each pint container. Place whole or sliced berries in containers and cover with cold syrup. Package and freeze.

For other helpful recipes and tips on using fresh strawberries, visit ‘Belle’s Blog’!

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