Because spinach is so easy to grow, I almost always end up with way more than I can eat, no matter how many recipes I have. What to do with all of the extra? Can you freeze spinach? The short answer is, yes, you can. But you can’t just throw your harvest into a freezer bag and forget it. (Well, actually you can, but we’ll get to that in a minute.)
Like most fresh produce, spinach will keep in the freezer for quite some time. Depending on how you opt to freeze spinach, that could be anywhere from a few months to over a year. Ah, but how can you freeze spinach without ruining it? That’s the question.
How can you freeze spinach to enjoy later? 3 Ways to save spinach for another time
There are a few ways of approaching this project. No matter what you choose, though, you need to wash your spinach first. Dunk the spinach in cold water once or twice to remove any dirt. Then thoroughly dry your spinach. A salad spinner is a fantastic tool for this, but you can also lay the spinach out on a towel and use another dry towel to cover it and pat it dry.
Once your spinach is clean, you can move onto the next step, which is? Despite what I said above, you actually can throw your clean, dry spinach into a freezer bag. Just be sure to squeeze out as much air as possible. But – and this is very important – if you do this, you’ll need to use the spinach within a few months. A lot of people suggest six months as the maximum, but I can’t vouch for that as I’ve never waited that long to use frozen spinach if I didn’t blanch it first.
So how can you freeze spinach if you want to hold onto it for longer? You’ll start the same way – by cleaning and drying the spinach. Meanwhile, boil a large pot of water. When you’re ready, blanch the spinach for two minutes. Remove the spinach from the boiling water and place it in ice water for another two minutes. Then dry your spinach just like before.
Once you’ve done that, place the desired amount of spinach in freezer bags, again squeezing out as much air as possible. Seal the bags, date them, and put them in your freezer. Incidentally, the water you used to blanch the spinach is a great start for broth or you can water your plants with it once it cools.
Can you freeze spinach without all that prep? Sort of. You can also puree spinach with a little bit of water and freeze it in ice cube trays. Once the spinach cubes set, you can move them to freezer bags. This is a great way to use spinach in smoothies or as an addition to soups.
Whatever you choose, you end up with fresh frozen spinach throughout the winter until your garden is ready to start growing spinach again.
Do you freeze spinach or other greens? Can you freeze spinach in any other way or do you prefer one of these methods? Share your thoughts in the comments.