Often confused with swede, turnips are much like other root vegetables in terms of how you cook them and how you use them. But can you also freeze turnips like other root veggies?
Turnips can be frozen for up to 6 months. If freezing turnips raw, you will want to take the time to blanch them beforehand. You can also freeze roasted turnips or turnip mash.
Can You Refreeze Turnips? No
Do Turnips Freeze Well? Yes
How To Freeze Turnips
Before you freeze your turnips, make sure you give them a good scrub. Discard any that are slightly soft as you will not improve them by freezing them, unfortunately. Once you’ve got a bowl of cleaned turnips, it’s time to freeze them.
- Boil Water
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. You don’t need to season the water as you’re only blanching them.
- Prep Turnips
While you wait for the water to boil, peel your turnips and can into equal-sized cubes.
Place your turnips in the water and blanch for around 90 seconds. Drain and place straight into ice-cold water to prevent the turnips from cooking any further. Then drain again.
- Flash Freeze
Spread out on a baking tray, trying to ensure there is a gap between each cube of the turnip. Place this tray in the freezer for a few hours to flash freeze your turnip. You’re looking to freeze the outsides solid.
- Final Freeze
Remove the tray and tip the contents into a freezer bag to store for the long term in the freezer. As you seal the bag up, try to remove as much of the air as possible.
How to Freeze Cooked Turnips
Freezing turnips raw works really well if you don’t know what you’re going to end up using them for. But if you know how you want to cook them or have leftovers, then here are the methods to follow for freezing cooked turnips.
How to Freeze Roasted Turnips
Roasted turnips are delicious. Roasting seems to soften the bitterness you often get with turnips while giving them that tasty roasted flavour. But it does take a bit of time.
It’s not difficult but what if you want a quick portion of roasted turnips?
Well, the good news is that you can freeze roasted turnips, so they’re ready to go from the freezer.
Before you freeze your roasted turnips, you’re going to need to actually roast them. You probably have your own method. If not, it’s simple. Peel the turnips then cut into wedges or cubes.
Toss with some olive oil, salt and other seasonings such as pepper or chilli if you wish. Tip into a roasting tray then place in a hot oven for 30 minutes or so until soft.
Once you’ve roasted your turnips, you need to give them time to completely cool. While they’re cooling, make sure you drain off any excess liquid and oil.
- Flash Freeze
Once cooled, place the tray directly into the freezer for a few hours to flash freeze – you may want to wrap the top in a layer of cling film.
- Bag Up
When they have frozen, remove them from the freezer then scoop them into a freezer bag.
Seal the bag up, squeezing out as much of the air as possible, before returning them to the freezer.
How to Freeze Mashed Turnips
You certainly can! The good news with freezing mashed turnips is that there’s no need to blanch. Essentially, once you have made your turnip mash, you need to scoop it into a bag before placing it in the freezer.
It’s a good idea to only place a portion size into each bag so you can easily thaw our one portion as and when you need it.
As always, make sure you remove as much of the air as possible when sealing them up.
3 Tips for Freezing Turnips
Now you know how to freeze turnips, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing it to have the best results:
Blanching is vital to ensure your turnip maintains its flavour, texture and taste. Don’t skip this stage and make sure you blanch then beforehand.
Try Cooking First
Cooking turnips before freezing will save you time in future and will ensure your turnip freezes really well too.
Cook from Frozen
When thawing turnips there’s good news… You don’t need to! You can cook roasted turnip or blanch turnip from frozen. Place into a pot of boiling water if blanched and boil for 30 minutes or throw into a hot oven until cook through if roasted.
How Long Can You Freeze Turnips?
We would recommend keeping your turnips (in any form) for a maximum of 6 months. Beyond this point, the texture might break down somewhat. Generally speaking, they’ll remain perfectly safe to eat but might not be quite as flavourful.
As always, make sure you label your bags with the contents and when they need to be consumed. This will save you from wasting any of the turnip further down the line.
You Can Freeze Turnips for Around 6 Months
How Do You Defrost Turnips?
The good news is that you don’t even need to thaw roasted turnip pieces or blanched turnip. Instead, you can cook them from frozen. If you want to add turnip to soup or stews, grab a handful and toss it into your pan.
If you want to cook turnip on its own, then place in a pan of boiling water for 30 minutes until fork-tender.
The only exception is turnip mash. You’ll want to thaw this overnight in the fridge in a bowl. Once soft, place in a pan and warm through over a very low heat. You might need to add a splash of milk or a knob of butter to make it silky and smooth.
Can You Refreeze Turnips?
We would recommend avoiding refreezing turnips. The problem with thawing then refreezing is that you’re highly likely to break the texture down rapidly in doing so.
Instead, we would encourage freezing your turnips in portions so that you can defrost a portion at a time. This is a far more efficient way to avoid unwanted wastage.
Do Turnips Freeze Well?
There are no two ways about it: Turnips freeze really well. Like many root vegetables such as carrots, the texture and structure of turnips lend themselves perfectly to being frozen.
In fact, you’ll really struggle to tell the difference between fresh and frozen turnips.
The only time that this doesn’t ring true is with mashed turnips. They can become a little strange in texture. If you have the choice, we would recommend freezing your turnips in cubes, blanched.
If you’ve still got questions about freezing turnips or turnips in general, then these may help:
Can You Freeze Turnip Greens?
Turnip greens can be frozen. We would recommend blanching for barely 30 seconds to help them retain their nutrients and to also allow it to freeze better for long. You can place them in a freezer bag.
If you want more ideas on freezing turnip greens, check out our article on freezing kale and substitute the kale for your turnip greens.
Can You Freeze Carrot and Turnip Mash?
We’ve discussed freezing mashed potatoes in the past. The good news is that the same approach can be taken with carrot and turnip mash so head over to that page for a detailed outline on how you should go about freezing any form of mash.
Ultimately, it comes down to plenty of butter and fat, which helps it to freeze. You can then freeze it in one go in a bag or freeze it in clumps on a baking tray if you’d prefer portions.
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