How to Freeze Green Beans

Easy steps for preserving your harvest.

When the harvest is high, it's time to start preserving the harvest.

When the harvest is high, it's time to start preserving the harvest.

When the harvest is high, it's time to start preserving the harvest.

When the harvest is high, it's time to start preserving the harvest.

While I’m not a fan of the scorching hot weather we are experiencing just now, plenty of sunshine and higher than average rainfall has been very good for the garden. The counter is piled high with yellow squash, zucchini, various peppers, spaghetti squash, cucumber of several varieties, plenty of tomatoes and, of course, green beans. Green beans grow readily in our garden and work with just about any meal, so we tend to plant more than we can eat fresh (not that we don’t try).

Late in the season, there is often a mad dash to can or freeze the last of the summer crops for the winter, but there is no better time to preserve the harvest than when the garden is going full tilt. Green beans are acceptable candidates for canning, but the texture of canned beans tends to be a little rubbery. Freezing, on the other hand, retains most of the flavor and texture of fresh beans. While it’s not quite as simple as tossing a bag of beans into the freezer, it’s close (and well worth the effort when it comes time to make that green bean casserole for Thanksgiving).

Freezing Vegetables from Your Garden

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Fresh Broccoli Beats Store-Bought Every Time

Want to enjoy fresh-from-the-garden broccoli all year long? It's a snap to freeze this fiber-rich veggie to use in stir fries, soup and more. Learn the process for how to freeze broccoli in this article by Julie A. Martens.

©2013, Image courtesy of Ben Rollins

Overwhelmed with Cucumbers?

Cucumber vines can be prolific producers of the treasured summertime veggie. Don't think it's possible to freeze cucumbers? Well, the secret lies in the preparation. Learn how to freeze cucumbers for summer-fresh fare in any season.

©2012, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Never Have Too Many Cherry Tomatoes

While frozen cherry tomatoes are no longer fit to be used in tossed salads, you can blend them with herbs or use in soups and stew. In this article, Julie A. Martens offers several great uses for frozen cherry tomatoes and describes the best way to preserve them.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Freeze Spinach for Soups and More

While you won't want to serve frozen spinach in fresh salads, the leaves will work nicely in soup, casseroles and stir fries. You'll just want to freeze young leaves. Avoid the older or yellowing leaves as they'll produce a nasty taste and rubbery texture. Ever tried making frozen spinach cubes? Get more tips on how to freeze spinach in this article on how to freeze spinach.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Can You Freeze Kale?

Yes, you can freeze kale. Frozen kale works well in smoothies and blends well into quiches, crock pot stews and soups. Find more uses for frozen kale and how to best preserve this nutrient-packed green.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Put Your Onions in the Deep Freeze

Too many onions to eat right away? Not a problem. They freeze easily, and can be used in a variety of ways. Learn how to prep onions for safe storage in the deep freeze, how to keep the onion odor low and when to use frozen onions in your dishes.  

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Freeze Asparagus for Great Flavor

While frozen asparagus spears won't be as crisp as garden-fresh stems, they can still be used in many dishes. Here are the steps to preserving this nutrient-dense vegetable and some ideas on how to use frozen asparagus to add flavor to your meals.

©2013, Image courtesy of Ben Rollins

Can You Freeze Garlic Cloves?

You definitely can freeze garlic. In fact, you can freeze garlic in many ways. While frozen garlic lacks the crunchy texture of fresh, the flavor remains strong—and definitely won't have the chemical taste that sometimes accompanies jarred garlic. Learn several ways to freeze garlic and how to use it to add flavor to food.

©2010, How to Grow Practically Everything, Dorling Kindersley Limited

How Do You Freeze Eggplant?

Eggplant doesn't keep very long, and you won't be able to can it without pulverizing it beyond recognition. So, how do you preserve your delicious eggplant? Forget your canner and learn how to freeze eggplant. Here are several freezing methods you can try.

©2012, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Enjoy a Summertime Favorite All Year

Learn how to freeze corn and you'll be able to enjoy this summertime treat all year—even with your holiday turkey. Freezing corn is simple, and it's a great way to introduce kids to food preservation. Learn the steps to freezing corn in this article by Julie A. Martens.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

How to Freeze Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts bring more than taste to the table. This cabbage cousin boasts vitamins and is high in protein, so you'll want to make your locally-grown Brussels sprouts last. Learn the two ways to freeze Brussels sprouts and ways to include this frozen super veggie on your table.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Steps to Freezing Cabbage

Want to enjoy the nutrition offered by cabbage all year? This unsung hero of the vegatable garden adapts well to the freezing process. Start with dense, solid heads that feel weighty for their size. Learn more about the steps to freezing cabbage in this article from Julie A. Martens.

©2010, DK - How to Grow Practically Everything , Dorling Kindersley Limited

Freeze Celery for Soups

Celery is mostly water, and the freezing process ruptures cell walls, resulting in a limp, mushy product. But frozen celery works fabulously in casseroles, sauces, stock, and other hot concoctions. You can also use it as an aromatic with soups, broths for cooking rice, or roasts, tossing after cooking. Learn the steps to freezing celery in this article.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Overstocked on Mushrooms?

Mushrooms might last about a week in the refrigerator, which might not be enough time to enjoy the bounty you may have grown or foraged. Consider freezing mushrooms. Learn which method of freezing mushrooms works best, and get some ideas for how to use them in recipes.

©2010, How to Grow Practically Everything, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Blanching is the practice of partially cooking produce by immersing fruits or vegetables in boiling water for a brief period. It can be done to soften produce, mellow strong flavors or to loosen the outer skin for easy removal (commonly used for tomatoes or peaches). For our purposes, it also has the effect of destroying enzymes that cause vegetables to degrade over time. If frozen produce will not be stored for long periods, this step may not be necessary, but it is a fail safe well worth the minimal effort required.

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How to Freeze Okra

Okra is a Southern favorite, thanks to its heat-loving disposition. Stock up on okra in season and freeze it for later use.

How to Freeze Broccoli

Garden-fresh broccoli tastes amazing—nothing like its supermarket cousin. Freeze this cool-weather crop in season to savor later.

How to Freeze Corn

Treat your family to the fresh-picked flavor of corn on the cob—all year long. It’s not hard to freeze this summertime favorite.

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Freeze fresh spinach leaves—homegrown or store-bought—to create your own dark leafy green to flavor hot dishes and smoothies.

Can You Freeze Celery?

Home-grown celery has a bold flavor that’s tough to beat. Preserve that tangy flavor by freezing celery—we’ll explain how.

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Sun-ripened flavors are one of gardening's simple joys. Learn how to freeze fresh vegetables to enjoy the goodness all year long.

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It’s easy and prolific, but what’s a gardener to do with all those green onions? Discover a few easy ways to freeze scallions.

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