If you have tons of rhubarb, one of the easiest ways to preserve it is to freeze it. Here’s how I freeze rhubarb so that I can use it in various recipes throughout the year .
I like to freeze chopped rhubarb pieces on a tray before putting them in freezer baggies so I can easily pour out whatever quantity I want – no need to premeasure before freezing.
Rhubarb is also one of those veggies (yes, rhubarb is technically a veggie not a fruit) that can be frozen without blanching. That’s why freezing rhubarb takes no time at all.
Here’s the recipe followed by a photo guide if you’re a more visual person.
- Cut leaves and tail ends from stalks. Compost.
- Wash and dry stalks well to remove excess moisture to prevent ice crystals.
- Cut stalks into preferred size, 1/2-1" (1-2.5 cm).
- Place pieces on tray or cookie sheet in single layer. Freeze until solid, 1-2 hours.
- Transfer frozen pieces into freezer bag.
- Remove as much air from bag as possible before sealing. Use a straw inserted into a small opening and suck out air to create a simple vacuum seal. This helps prevent freezer burn.
- Label and freeze for one year.
- To use, pour out the amount of rhubarb required for a recipe. Reseal and return bag to freezer as quickly as possible.
- Unless recipe specifies otherwise, do not thaw rhubarb before using.
Wash and dry stalks. It’s important to remove as much surface moisture as possible so that there’s as little ice crystals forming in your freezer bag as possible.
Chop rhubarb to desired size. Think about how you prefer to use your frozen rhubarb. I often add pieces to muffins, so I cut my pieces about 1/2″. If you typically stew your rhubarb, larger pieces will work perfectly.
Place rhubarb pieces in a single layer on a cookie sheet or large tray and freeze until solid – one to two hours.
Remove frozen pieces and place in freezer bag. Using a straw, suck out as much air from the bag as possible and seal baggie well.
By using a straw you create somewhat of a vacuum seal. While it’s not perfect, removing as much air as possible will help reduce freezer burn.
Label and store in freezer until next rhubarb season. Officially, “they” say frozen rhubarb will last 6-12 months. In reality, I’ll tell you that I’ve happily and successfully used rhubarb that has been in the freezer well over a year.
Because the rhubarb season is relatively short, I often use more frozen rhubarb than I do fresh rhubarb. Here are some of my favorite recipes that work equally well with fresh or frozen rhubarb.
What’s your favorite way to use frozen rhubarb?
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