This easy step by step guide with pictures shows how to freeze onions at home to extend the shelf life of this versatile vegetable.
Onions store well when kept in a cool, dark and dry place however in humid and warm climates onions will begin to sprout sooner than you can use them. Freezing is a great way to preserve onions for the months to come and prevent food waste.
Onions which have just begun to sprout can be frozen however any onions with a brown mushy centre should be discarded.
Freezer Containers V’s Freezer Bags
Store frozen onions in either airtight reusable freezer containers to save on plastic waste or a large freezer bag.
It is important to freeze the amount needed for a dish in reusable freezer containers as it can be difficult to separate the amount needed once frozen. It will depend on the amount of moisture on the onions prior to freezing as to whether they will stick together or not.
An alternative method would be to freeze the chopped onion in a single layer on baking trays then place in a freezer container. This will ensure the onion doesn’t stick together and you can use a large container.
When using a freezer bag, you can put as much as you want in it however it must be frozen flat so it is easy to break off the amount of diced onion needed for your recipe.
The option you choose will depend on what you have available and how much freezer space you have as the freezer bag will take up less space than containers.
Onions do not need to be blanched which saves time however it is important to wash the bulb after peeling. This will reduce contamination and reduce the toxins which cause you to cry.
Tools and Materials Needed
- Sharp Knife
- Airtight Bag or Container
- Label – These top rated sky blue Reusable Labels are waterproof and save on waste. They are great value on Amazon and are made in the USA. (Paid link)
How to freeze onions at home.
- Prepare the Onion
First peel the onion then wash under cold water. Chop into ½ inch (12mm) to an inch (25mm) pieces. Smaller pieces may turn into mush during the freezing process.
Place either the amount needed for a recipe in a freezer safe container or place in a large freezer bag. Squeeze the air from the bag while pressing the onion into a flat layer. Tie off the bag securely.
Label the container or bag with the contents and the date frozen then place in the freezer. Make sure the plastic bag lays flat so it will freeze in a thin layer.
- Using Frozen Onion
It isn’t necessary to thaw the onions prior to cooking unless you are having trouble removing it from the freezer container. If you have used the freezer bag simply break off the amount needed then add straight to your dish.
Frozen onion will safely store for up to 6 months. After this time, it may be affected by freezer burn which will reduce the quality of the onions.
Are you looking for freezer containers? This 25 pack Snap Seal Freezer Containers are rectangular in shape which takes up less room in the freezer and they are highly rated on Amazon. (Paid link)
For more information on preserving food at home including drying and canning, see this free Food Preservation guide.
Are you interested in getting more from your home and garden? This Homesteading guide covers everything from craft ideas to DIY projects and growing your own food.
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