How To Make Frozen Strawberries

Can you make your own frozen strawberries?

Step 2. Flash freeze strawberries individually – Arrange your strawberries on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, spacing them apart, then freeze until frozen solid, at least two hours. This pre-bagging step will prevent your berries from sticking together into an infuriatingly unbreakable mass when you store them.

Are frozen strawberries just as healthy?

Freezer fresh can have more nutrients than farm fresh There have been countless occasions when I’ve reached for a strawberry, only to realize that the fresh berries have gone bad before I’ve had a chance to eat them—even though I stored the fruit correctly,

It’s times like those when I’m compelled to give up on fresh fruit altogether, in favor of the frozen stuff. But I’ve also always been a little wary of frozen produce and wondered about the merits of frozen produce vs. fresh produce, After all, frozen fruit and vegetables seem more processed than their fresh counterparts since they’re all packed up in plastic bags or cardboard cartons.

And what about the nutritional value of fresh produce vs. frozen produce ? Is frozen fruit is healthier than fresh fruit, even though it’s kept in the freezer alongside that pint of ice cream and liter of vodka? Well, according to research from the University of Georgia and the Frozen Food Foundation (which is, it should be noted, funded by an industry organization of frozen food producers), frozen produce might actually have more nutrients than grocery store-bought fresh produce,

As the study’s lead author Dr. Ronald Pegg explained in a press release sent to Extra Crispy, “Our research shows that frozen fruits and vegetables are nutritionally equal to—and in some cases better than—their fresh-stored counterparts,” noting that, “In particular, Vitamin A was greater in frozen fruits and vegetables than select fresh-stored fruits and vegetables.” Though there wasn’t a significant difference between the initial nutritional content of the fresh and frozen produce that was tested in this study—including spinach, blueberries, corn, and strawberries—frozen produce held onto its nutritional value better over the course of five days than fresh produce stored in the fridge.

“When accounting for a storage period that mimics that employed by consumers,” write the researchers, “our findings do not support the common perception that fresh produce is nutritionally superior to frozen produce.” As Mary Ann Lila, director of the Plants for Human Health Institute at North Carolina State University, explained to the New York Times, if you want frozen produce that’s highest quality, look for a label that says it was, “individually quick frozen,” or IQF.

  • This means that each piece of produce, no matter how small, was frozen as an individual unit rather than as a block.
  • As Danilo Alfaro writes for The Spruce, “a bag of IQF peas doesn’t simply contain a solid block of frozen peas, but rather, each of the individually frozen peas is loose inside the bag.” Basically, the freshly picked produce is carted along a conveyer belt and then blasted with either “cryogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) gas or liquid nitrogen,” according to Linde Food, a manufacturer of this technology; it “locks in the moisture, shape and freshness of small food items,” as well as nutritional content.
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So when it comes to straight nutritional value of frozen produce compared to fresh produce, you could do worse. Frozen produce lasts longer, which is dope if you’re trying to get your fix of vitamins and minerals— and it’s generally less expensive than fresh fruit.

  1. But frozen fruits and vegetables can come with other complications.
  2. In recent years, there have been a slew of frozen produce recalls in the United States.
  3. In 2016, three individuals even died because they had contracted foodborne illnesses linked to consumption of frozen produce.
  4. In other words, eating frozen produce made them very sick.

EC: message-editor%2F1490620334150-frozen-peas-inline-getty Credit: Photo by Andrew Pini via Getty Images But this outbreak of foodborne illnesses doesn’t mean that frozen produce is all bad. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, you can get the same type of foodborne illness from fresh produce if you don’t store and prepare your produce correctly,

Bacteria, which is what caused all of these sicknesses, can grow really quickly on thawing food; that’s why you should never thaw food at room temperature, according to the FDA. Instead, thaw it in the fridge, in a bowl of room temperature water, or in the microwave. There’s also the textural consideration of frozen produce.

If you’re making a smoothie or some kind of baked good—like a berry scone or a fruit danish or even berry-filled pancakes—frozen fruit is a great option. But eating a frozen strawberry straight out of the bag is basically like biting into an ice cube, and nobody really wants that.

So frozen fruit might not be perfect for every recipe, and you have to handle it correctly so as to minimize your risk of getting sick. But there’s no reason to believe that frozen fruit is “worse” than fresh fruit because it’s stored in the freezer. If anything, frozen produce is just as healthy as fresh fruit, if not more so, so go ahead and stock up that freezer and never deal with a moldy strawberry again.

By Maxine Builder and Maxine Builder

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Are frozen strawberries less healthy than fresh?

Fresh vs Frozen: Which Is More Nutritious? – Results from studies that have compared the nutrient content of frozen and fresh produce vary slightly. This is because some studies use freshly harvested produce, which removes the effects of storage and transport time, while others use produce from supermarkets.

  1. Additionally, differences in processing and measuring methods can influence results.
  2. However, in general, the evidence suggests that freezing can preserve nutrient value, and that the nutritional content of fresh and frozen produce is similar ( 2, 7, 11 ).
  3. When studies do report nutrient decreases in some frozen produce, they are generally small ( 3, 8, 12 ).

Furthermore, levels of vitamin A, carotenoids, vitamin E, minerals and fiber are similar in fresh and frozen produce. They’re generally not affected by blanching ( 11 ). Studies comparing supermarket produce with frozen varieties — such as peas, green beans, carrots, spinach and broccoli — found the antioxidant activity and nutrient content to be similar ( 5, 13 ).

Are frozen strawberries better than fresh?

Are Frozen Berries Healthier Then Fresh? In addition to being a delicious part of any diet, berries have long been considered super foods that are packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and powerful antioxidants. Berries are often available both frozen and fresh, but few consumers realize that frozen berries are often the healthier choice.

Many people erroneously believe that “fresh is best”, but when it comes to berries, the frozen varieties have a higher concentration of nutritional elements, and are often spared from the large amounts of pesticides that are used on fresh berries found in a supermarket. Numerous studies have found that frozen berries contain the same nutritional elements as fresh berries that have just been harvested.

However, this does not mean that “fresh” berries found in the produce section of a grocery store are a better choice than frozen berries. Unlike the berries cited in these studies, the fresh berries that are readily available to consumers when in season are already days past harvest by the time they arrive at the market, since most berries endure several days of travel to make it to their final destination.

  1. As each day passes, the berries slowly lose the nutrients that were so concentrated when they were picked.
  2. In comparison, are almost always flash frozen the same day that they are harvested, preserving the natural nutrients and antioxidants that are present at the peak of freshness.
  3. According to studies conducted by John Hopkins University, the process of freezing just harvested berries results in berries that maintain their optimal nutrition levels for months at a time, making it possible to easily incorporate these super foods into a diet just by opening the freezer.
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Like many crops, commercially grown berries are often exposed to a number of pesticides. In most cases, commercial farms specialize in either growing berries that will be sold fresh or sold frozen. In some instances, farms will grow both, but the crops are designated and grown separately from each other.

  1. Berries that are grown with the intention of being frozen are exposed to a significantly lower amount of pesticides than their counterparts that are sent to the grocery store fresh.
  2. The reason for this is that fresh berries must maintain a good appearance for days, or even a week or more, as they are transported and then sold to consumers.

This requires large amounts of pesticides and sprays to be administered before and after harvest. Thus, the berries that end up frozen have much lower levels of pesticide and crop spray exposure and residue. To display this dramatic difference between fresh and frozen we have taken data from the USDA pesticide testing program.

  1. The USDA data shows 52 different pesticide residues on a fresh blueberry vs.
  2. Only 21 on a frozen blueberry.
  3. Although we at advocate eating wild or organic berries as much as possible, it’s clear when not available, frozen berries are the best choice for maintaining optimal health.
  4. Frozen berries are available year round, and are usually less expensive than their “fresh” counterparts.

Combine that with the fact that frozen berries contain the same nutrients as freshly harvested berries, and maintain those nutrients for months or years while being stored in the freezer, and it is easy to see why purchasing frozen berries is a good idea.

Sources Ann Marie Connor, James J. Luby, James F. Hancock, Steven Berkheimer, and Eric J. Hanson, “Changes In Fruit Antioxidant Activity Among Blueberry Cultivars During Cold-Temperature Storage,” Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, vol.50, no.4, pp.893-898, 2002. Virachnee Lohachoompol, George Srzednicki, and John Craske, “The Change of Total Anthocyanins in Blueberries and Their Antioxidant Effect After Drying and Freezing,” Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology, vol.2004, no.5, pp.248-252, 2004.

Mariana-Atena Poiana,Diana Moigradean, Diana Raba, Liana-Maria Alda and Mirela Popa, “The Effect of Long-Term Frozen Storage on the Nutraceutical Compounds, Antioxidant Properties and Color Indices of Different Kinds of Berries,” Journal of Food, Agriculture & Environment, vol.8, no.1, pp.54-58, 2010.

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