Ginger is one of the most used spice ingredients from Japan to India. But, as you probably know, a little goes a long way. So what do you do with all that leftover ginger you might not need for a week or two?
Ginger can be frozen for up to 9 months. You can freeze ginger whole, grated into an ice cube tray, juiced or as a ready to use paste. You’ll often not even need to defrost your ginger to use it!
Can You Freeze Ginger? Yes
Can You Refreeze Ginger? No
Does Ginger Freeze Well? Yes
How to Freeze Ginger
Ginger is one of the most versatile spices out there. With this versatility, comes a whole range of ways you can go about freezing it. You can freeze it whole, in an ice cube tray, juiced and in a paste. We’ve covered all four approaches below:
How to Freeze Ginger Whole
The easiest and most simplistic way to freeze ginger is to place it in a sealable container or a zip lock bag and put it in the freezer.
First, take your ginger root and peel it. The easiest way to do this is with a teaspoon. Scrap the spoon along the edges of the ginger to peel it without much wastage.
- Cut it Up (Optional)
Cut the ginger into thumb-sized pieces. This is often what a recipe will call for so having them frozen as pieces makes it easier to grab one piece at a time. This step is optional, however.
- Bag Up
Once peeled, toss the ginger into a ziplock bag and place it in the freezer.
When you need your ginger, grate it straight from the freezer into your dish. As you’re grating it, the pieces will be so small that they’ll cook almost instantly without the need to thaw beforehand.
Freezing ginger whole is super quick, but we’d actually recommend freezing in thumb-sized pieces. This tends to be what recipes call for. That way, you can grab a thumb of ginger, and you have the portion ready to go.
How to Freeze Ginger in an Ice Cube Tray
If you want to have ginger ready-grated in the freezer, then this is a great method:
- Portion into Ice Cubes
Place roughly one tablespoon (or three teaspoons, it’s the same quantity) into each ice cube slot, top up with water to cover the ginger and put it in the freezer.
- Bag Up
Once frozen, remove the tray and pop the cubes out. You can place these cubes into a ziplock bag.
- Final Freeze
Return the bag to the freezer. When you want a hit of ginger in curry, stew or soup then grab a cube and toss it into your pot.
How to Freeze Ginger Dishes
If you don’t just want to freeze ginger on its own and want to freeze it as part of a dish then check these out:
How to Freeze Ginger Juice
It’s all the rage now – a quick shot of ginger in the morning to blow away the cobwebs and clear your system out. But your question is can you freeze ginger juice, giving yourself a decent supply of ginger shots from your freezer?
Well, yes, you can! In fact, it’s one of the easiest ways to freeze ginger in any form and is also a huge time saver as you can bulk prepare ginger shots ready for the morning:
- Make Shots
First, make your ginger shots how you normally would. Here are 3 ways to make ginger shots from WikiHow.
- Portion into Ice Cubes
Now grab an ice cube tray. Ideally, find one with large cubes so that they are the equivalent of one shot. If you can only find a standard tray, you’ll need to use two cubes per shot.
Fill the cubes with your ginger shot and place in the freezer.
Now, when you want a shot, you need to grab a cube from the freezer and place it in a glass until it has thawed. It will only take a few hours to thaw on the worktop.
Or, if you’re prepared, grab one from the freezer the night before and give it time to thaw in the fridge slowly, so you have chilled ginger shots in the fridge ready and waiting for you each morning.
How to Freeze Ginger and Garlic Paste
It’s the base of hundreds of Indian dishes, and by having a decent supply of homemade ginger and garlic paste in your freezer, you too can be throwing together authentic Indian curries in no time.
That’s right, you can freeze ginger and garlic paste… And it freezes really well too:
- Portion into Ice Cubes
Once you’ve made your ginger and garlic paste (recipe here), you need to grab your trusty ice cube tray. Spoon the paste into each cube and add a very thin layer of flavourless vegetable oil.
- Flash Freeze
Place in the freezer for several hours until the cubes are frozen solid.
- Bag Up
Once frozen, remove the cubes and then add them to a zip lock bag. Return the bag to the freezer.
Now, when it comes to cooking a curry. Grab a paste cube from the freezer and place it straight into the pan over low heat. Thaw it out slowly, stirring frequently, and you’ll have the base of a perfect curry.
3 Tips for Freezing Ginger
Now you know how to freeze it, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing ginger to have the best results:
Peel it First
Chances are, you won’t need the ginger peel. It’s not pleasant. So before you freeze it, make sure you peel it to save yourself any aggro further down the line.
Grate Frozen Ginger
You can grate frozen ginger straight into your cooking. It will thaw almost instantly as you grate it as the surface area is so small.
Soften in the Microwave
If you want slices of ginger, then you can soften the ginger in the microwave on a quick 15-second blast. This will make it far easier to slice.
How Long Can You Freeze Ginger?
Frozen ginger portions stay well in the freezer for a maximum of 9 months while maintaining good overall quality.
If your freezer is stocked full with containers or bags of frozen vegetables, don’t forget to label your ginger, so, later on, you don’t find yourself wondering what that brown thing in the freezer is. It’s important to remember to date the container or zip lock bag, so you don’t end up leaving it in there for too long, making it rot and go to waste.
You Can Freeze Ginger for up to 9 Months
How Do You Defrost Ginger?
Here’s some more excellent news about frozen ginger: You don’t necessarily have to thaw it! Instead, when you need ginger for that fantastic meal you’re going to prepare, take a piece and grate it straight into the pan from the freezer.
If you need a lump of ginger in your dish, for example, if you were to use it in a stirfry, you would want to thaw it a little. You might be in a hurry to go somewhere or have a pile of work to do and, thus, need the ginger to thaw as soon as possible.
All you have to do is place the frozen portion in a bowl of cool water, and it will defrost in about 2 minutes.
You can also place the frozen piece of ginger in the microwave for roughly 15 seconds – that way, it will also be much easier to slice it. If it’s still not soft enough to slice, place the ginger piece back in the microwave for a few seconds more.
Can You Refreeze Ginger?
A lot of the flavour from ginger is in the moisture stored within the body of the ginger. When you thaw anything, you release some of this moisture, and with this moisture, you lose some of the flavours. Frozen ginger can often be a little milder than fresh ginger.
If you were to refreeze it, that ginger flavour would only become milder. For this reason, we’d hold back on refreezing ginger and try and defrost the amount you need when you need it.
Does Ginger Freeze Well?
Just like any fresh food, freezing ginger will decrease its quality to some extent. However, properly frozen ginger is nearly as good as fresh ginger, both flavour and nutrient wise. Plus, you’ll never run out of ginger (isn’t that a big plus?)
Because fresh ginger has a very fibrous texture, one significant advantage of frozen ginger is that it is easier to grate than fresh ginger, even when unthawed.
If you’ve still got questions about freezing ginger or ginger in general, then these may help:
Can You Freeze Ginger Cake?
You certainly can. Make your ginger cake as you usually would but avoid adding a glaze or icing. Wrap the cake in a clingfilm layer and then place in a container to avoid it getting damaged—place in the freezer.
When you want to eat, leave it to thaw slowly at room temperature. You may need to drain away any excess liquid. You can then add icing or a glaze if you wish or enjoy as soon as it is thawed throughout.
Can You Freeze Ginger for Smoothies?
When it comes to freezing ginger for smoothies, we recommend peeling a ginger root and then placing it into a bag in the freezer. When you need some ginger for a smoothie, take the root from the freezer and grate it straight into the blender. Return the ginger root to the freezer for future use.
Should You Freeze Ginger to Grate It?
Freezing ginger is actually a great way to make it easier to grate. Making the outside harder makes it far easier to grate, and there’s no need to thaw it at all. Just grate it straight into the dish you’re making. We’d recommend cutting the ginger into thumb-sized pieces so you can grab a piece at a time from the freezer.
You don’t really want to keep freezing, slightly defrosting and re-freezing the same piece of ginger over and over and over again.
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