Cauliflower is one of the most versatile vegetables going, making quite the revival as a way of creating rice and pizza crusts with added health benefits.
But the question is can you freeze cauliflower and how do you going about it?
Cauliflower can be frozen for up to 6 months. To freeze cauliflower, blanch florets before drying and then freezing on a baking tray. Once frozen solid, you can tip the frozen cauliflower florets into a bag.
Can You Refreeze Cauliflower? No
Does Cauliflower Freeze Well? Yes
How to Freeze Cauliflower
If you’re just looking to freeze basic cauliflower so you’ve got a supply in the freezer ready to use then this is the approach to take:
Bring a large pot of water to the boil. Tip your cauliflower florets into the boiling water for 3 minutes then drain immediately running it under cold water or dunking it in an ice bath to instantly stop the cooking process.
Allow the cauliflower to cool completely.
- Place Onto a Baking Tray
Place the florets on a baking tray spread out trying to make sure none of the pieces are touching.
Place the tray into the freezer for a few hours to flash freeze.
- Bag Up and Freeze
Remove the tray and tip the frozen pieces of cauliflower into a freezer bag and return to the freezer.
By freezing in this way, you’ll easily be able to grab as many florets as you need for dinner. If you don’t flash freeze then there’s a risk your cauliflower will freeze in one large clump making it hard to grab a portion at a time.
How to Freeze Cauliflower Dishes
Cauliflower is an incredibly versatile vegetable that can come in a range of forms and dishes. We’ve covered a few popular dishes below:
How to Freeze Cauliflower Cheese
Allow your cauliflower cheese to completely cool to room temperature.
Once cooled, wrap it in a layer of foil followed by a layer of clingfilm to keep it protected. You want to freeze it in the container you will reheat it in.
Place it in the freezer.
That’s all you need to do to get your cauliflower cheese frozen.
How to Freeze Cauliflower Rice
- Blitz Florets
So you’ve got your cleaned cauliflower florets. Simply place them into a food processor (in batches if you’re doing a lot). Use the pulse function because if you over-process the cauliflower it will become mush instead of rice.
- Portion Into Bags
Scoop your cauliflower rice into portions in ziplock bags and then seal, squeezing out as much of the air as possible.
Place the bags in the freezer and store them for up to 3 months.
3 Tips for Freezing Cauliflower
Now you know how to freeze it, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing cauliflower to have the best results:
Blanching cauliflower has a range of benefits. It will lock in flavour, texture and colour. We would always urge you to blanch vegetables even if it does take a little more effort.
Think about how much cauliflower you’ll use in one sitting and freeze it in portions of this size.
There’s nothing to stop you from mixing cauliflower with other vegetables so it’s ready to go with other veggies. The obvious choice here would be broccoli florets as they cook at a similar time.
How Long Can You Freeze Cauliflower?
Cauliflower florets will keep for around 6 months in the freezer before there’s a risk they’ll be affected by freezer burn. For cauliflower cheese and cauliflower rice, we would recommend using them up within 3 months.
You Can Freeze Cauliflower for up to 6 Months
As always, make sure you label up your frozen products with the date they need to be consumed to avoid wasting them in a few months time.
How Do You Defrost Cauliflower?
If you are looking to defrost cauliflower florets then place them in the fridge to thaw overnight. This will ensure they don’t become mushy when you cook them.
You can bring them to a boil in a pan straight from the freezer but sometimes this will lead to overcooking the outside.
If you’re using cauliflower rice then this can be cooked straight from the freezer. Heat some oil or butter in a pan and tip in your frozen rice. Give it a good toss to coat then cook for 5 minutes over a medium heat.
With cauliflower cheese, you need to place it straight into a hot oven and cook for 30-40minutes until it is piping hot through.
Can You Refreeze Cauliflower?
Unfortunately, refreezing cauliflower can leave to mushy florets which have a drastic textural change that will be easy to spot.
Instead, use the method above to freeze cauliflower into suitable portions to avoid any waste in future.
Does Cauliflower Freeze Well?
Cauliflower florets freeze particularly well and any aficionado would actually struggle to tell the difference between freeze and fresh cauliflower provided that you cook it well after thawing.
Cauliflower rice is the same. Provided that you cook it carefully then it will be no different.
The exception is cauliflower cheese. After freezing, the sauce of your cauliflower cheese can, unfortunately, become a little thin and watery.
When serving, use a slotted spoon to ensure you drain off some of this excess water as you don’t want to serve it up in a puddle of cheesy water.
If you’ve still got questions about freezing cauliflower or cauliflower in general, then these may help:
Do You Need to Blanch Cauliflower Before Freezing?
It’s not essential and you’ll still have perfectly frozen raw cauliflower. However, blanching acts as an extra layer of safety to kill off any bacterial enzymes in your cauliflower.
If you freeze cauliflower and there is bacteria present then freezing it won’t kill it, instead, it will just put it to sleep until you thaw it out.
Can You Freeze Cauliflower Soup?
Of course, you can! We’ve actually written a complete guide to freezing a huge variety of soups which you can check out here.
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