Do you love beetroot? With its distinct earthy flavor, beetroot is often used in soups, sandwiches, stews, and salads. This vegetable can be used in desserts and smoothies too! But what if you have leftover beetroot? Can you freeze beetroot? Thankfully, beetroot keeps so well in the freezer.
Image used under Creative Commons from Jeremy Keith
Fresh beetroot will keep fresh for a week in the fridge. But when frozen, this vegetable will stay fresh for 8 months or so. It’s important to keep the temperature at a steady 0 degrees Fahrenheit to maintain the quality and freshness of beetroot in the freezer.
Now the problem with freezing fresh beetroot is that the vegetable has the tendency to soften once it’s taken out of the freezer. Don’t worry, we will teach you how to freeze beetroot properly to maintain its original texture. Also, the beets are prone to “bleeding” after defrosting.
The fact is, beetroot that has softened after thawing is safe to use in cooking. Also, there is a way to keep the beets from bleeding, which we will outline below. Now, let’s take a look at how can you freeze beetroot:
Image used under Creative Commons from Niccie King
How to Freeze Beetroot?
In this guide, we will outline the ways to freeze beetroot and roasted beetroot. We don’t recommend freezing fresh beets, you have to cook the vegetable first prior to freezing for best results. Fresh, uncooked beets that have been frozen will take on an unpalatable grainy texture once defrosted.
Freezing Fresh Beetroot
To start, cut the greens from the beetroot but leave about an inch or two of the stem. Trim the long root ends and start scrubbing the vegetable with a soft brush to remove dirt. Once the vegetable is cleaned, set aside.
Get a large bowl; fill it with ice and water then set aside. Then, fill a large pot with water, add about ¼ cup of vinegar or lemon juice then bring to a boil. The lemon juice or vinegar will prevent bleeding after defrosting the beets.
Make sure the bowl filled with ice water is within a few inches from the pot so it’s accessible during blanching. Drop the beets into the boiling water gently and boil for about an hour for large beets and 25 minutes for smaller beets.
Once the beets are fork-tender, drain the vegetable and quickly immerse in ice water. This will stop the cooking process. Leave the beetroot to cool completely before trimming the root ends and removing the skin.
Once the beets are trimmed and skinned, it’s time to slice the vegetables into your desired cut. You can also forgo the cutting and start packing the vegetable whole for freezing. Place the beetroots in a freezer-safe plastic container or a resealable plastic bag. Write the label with the storage date then stick in the freezer.
Freezing Roasted or Leftover Beets
For roasted or leftover beets, get a resealable plastic bag and place the slices of vegetable inside. Give the resealable plastic bag a good squeeze to remove the air then seal. Write the storage date with a marker then stick in the freezer.
Image used under Creative Commons from Martin Delisle
How to Defrost Frozen Beetroot?
To defrost frozen beetroot, just transfer the container from the freezer to the fridge. Leave the vegetables to thaw for several hours to overnight. There is no need to reheat the thawed beetroot because it can be eaten as is. Reheating the beets prior to adding in cooking will only cause the vegetable to turn soggy.
Beets are such versatile vegetable. Luckily, beetroot can be frozen to extend its shelf life. Now that you know how can you freeze beetroot, you can buy this vegetable in bulk and try different recipes.