You can use the links below to skip through this article if you need help with how to go about freezing broad beans, how to defrost them or whether it’s actually worth doing in the first place:
How To Freeze Broad Beans
Broad beans have a short season so being able to freeze them can ensure you have a ready to go supply all year round. But how do you go about freezing broad beans? Well, you just need to follow these instructions, of course:
If the broad beans are in their pods, pop them out of the pods into a bowl.
You’ll now want to blanch them. This will make it easier to pop them out of their thick outer shell and also help to lock in nutrients. Simply bring a pot of water to the boil and add the broad beans. When the water begins to boil, keep the broad beans there for about 3 to 4 minutes. You can quickly remove them and cool them in ice water. Pop the bright green beans from their outer shells.
- Bag and Freeze
Transfer them to a freezer bag. Seal them without any air on the inside then store in the freezer. To prevent degradation, it’s vital that you remove as much air from the freezer bags as possible.
The sweet, bright green pod in the centre of a broad bean is the most enjoyable part which is why many people like to double pod broad beans. You can freeze them completely shelled but that tougher outer layer can help to protect them in the freezer so, where possible, keep it on.
3 Tips for Freezing Broad Beans
Now you know how to freeze broad beans, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing it to have the best results:
- Pod – There’s no point in freezing broad beans in their pods. So pop them out and store them as beans.
- Blanch – Blanching is a vital step to take when freezing broad beans (or most vegetables). It will ensure your broad beans retain their flavour, texture, nutrients and colour.
- Shake the Bag – Although flash-freezing would be the most successful way to freeze broad beans without them clumping together, it can be time-consuming. Instead, after 30 minutes, give the bag of broad beans a shake. This can prevent a lot of clumping occurring.
How Long Can You Freeze Broad Beans?
The duration for which broad beans can remain in the freezer depends on the method used to freeze them. Ultimately, it comes down to whether or not you have blanched them.
Unblanched broad beans remain good to eat when frozen for about 4 to 8 weeks. With blanched beans, the lifespan only increases. They last for 6 to 8 months in the freezer. When you remove them, make sure to taste and smell them. If anything seems amiss, it is best not to consume them.
You Can Freeze Broad Beans for Around 6 Months
How Do You Defrost Broad Beans?
You can defrost broad beans in a couple of ways. The best way that preserves maximum nutrients is to thaw them in the fridge, overnight. You can remove just the portion that you will use the next day and leave it in the fridge overnight.
This means that it will be ready to use by the time you come to use them the following evening.
At times, you may need the beans for a quick, emergency dish. In this case, you can simply take the broad beans out of the freezer and place it on the kitchen counter. They will thaw enough in about 30 minutes before you can add them to a pot of water or a pan to warm through and finish cooking.
Can You Refreeze Broad Beans?
Yes, you can refreeze broad beans after you thaw them. However, to do this, it is best to ensure that the broad beans are defrosted in the safest possible manner. You will also have to take note that the beans may not retain their previous nutrition, moisture, or texture when refrozen and used again.
If you must refreeze them, make sure that you don’t thaw your food at room temperature. This can expose the broad beans to more bacteria, and hence, lead to spoilage while refreezing. The best idea is to take the broad beans out from the freezer and thaw them in the fridge.
This retains the most nutritional value and keeps them safe. The best thing that you can do is to keep usable portions ready so you can avoid refreezing.
Do Broad Beans Freeze Well?
Yes, broad beans freeze very well. All you have to do is blanch them, cool them, and store them in freezer bags. With this, you can use them for a long time, even after the broad bean season is done and dusted.
We would recommend taking the time to remove the skins from the broad beans before freezing. This will allow you to simply throw a handful of broad beans into a pot when you next fancy some with no prep needed.
If you’ve still got questions about freezing broad beans or broad beans in general, then these may help:
Can You Freeze Broad Beans Without Blanching?
You can, but it’s not something we would recommend. They will still freeze perfectly fine and will be safe to eat but blanching will help you to lock in the nutrients of the broad beans.
Ultimately, one of the main reasons for eating broad beans is because they’re packed full of nutrients – blanching will prevent you from losing them. This is the case for the majority of vegetables.
Can You Freeze Broad Beans in the Pods?
Why would you want to? That is the main question is. The pods aren’t something you’ll want to eat and take up an extraordinary amount of room compared to the edible beans inside. That is why it is highly recommended that you take just a few minutes to pod the beans and freeze them out of the pod.