Fresh peaches taste great when they’re in season. But how can you still get the taste of fresh peaches, even in the off-season?
Freezing peaches is a simple process that doesn’t require a large amount of freezer space. Taking the time to freeze your peaches over the summer can make all the difference when you’re in the mood for a peach pie in the wintertime!
These yummy fruits can be used in cobblers, ice cream, sangria, iced tea, jam, and smoothies—there are endless possibilities!
Not sure where to begin? Read on for your step-by-step guide to freezing peaches!
Why Freeze Your Peaches?
Freezing peaches tend to make the peaches sweeter in comparison to canning your peaches. And the process is quicker and easier overall! Canning peaches, however, takes less sugar, making them a healthier alternative.
When choosing your peaches to freeze, you’ll need to decide between the freestone or clingstone varieties. Most people tend to prefer using the freestone variety since it will be easier to remove the pit. As the name suggests, the clingstone variety tends to hold onto the pit a bit tighter, making it a challenge to remove.
You’ll also want to choose ripe and fragrant peaches for the best end product. The peach is fully ripe when the flesh yields to light pressure when pressed at the stem of the fruit.
Your Step-By-Step on How to Freeze Peaches
It’s time to begin freezing your peaches! You’ll want to gather a pot for boiling water, a large bowl filled with iced water, a cutting board, and paring knife, and a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to begin the process.
1. Blanch Your Peaches
Begin by washing your peaches thoroughly. This will remove any bacteria on the outside skin, so it won’t transfer onto the peaches when you cut them.
Next, cut an X along the bottom of the peach skin, taking care not to cut into the flesh. Place your peaches into a pot of boiling water for 15-30 seconds.
Remove your peaches and place them directly into an ice bath. Allow them to cool completely.
2. Peel and Slice Your Peaches
Using the paring knife, tug at one corner of the X that you cut into the bottom of the peach. Use your fingers to pull the skin the rest of the way off. It should peel off easily!
Next, cut each peach in half, working the knife around the peach in a circle. The pit will prevent you from cutting all the way through. Now, grab both halves of the peach and twist around the center pit.
Separate the peach halves and use the paring knife to gently pull the pit free.
Slice each of the peach halves into 4 wedges. Continue with the remaining peaches.
Toss your peaches with 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice and ½ teaspoon of sugar for every pound of peaches you’ve blanched to prevent them from browning.
3. Freeze the Slices
Now it’s time to begin freezing!
Spread the sliced peaches onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Freeze the peaches overnight. By freezing them individually first, you won’t have to thaw an entire bag of peaches if you just want to use one or two slices in the future.
4. Refreeze Your Peaches
Now it’s time for the deep freeze! Transfer the individually frozen peach slices to a double ziplock baggie. Take special care to press the air out of the bag.
Place the bag in your freezer, taking care to spread the peaches out to make room for more storage in your freezer.
Keep the peaches frozen until ready to use. Do not allow them to begin thawing when removing any peaches from the bag.
Variations for Freezing Peaches
Looking for more options? Here are two other ways you can freeze peaches.
Flash Freeze Your Peaches
This method skips a step and is a bit quicker. However, the peaches tend to spoil faster. Use this method if you’re able to use your peaches within 2 months of flash freezing. Flash-frozen peaches work great in smoothies and ice cream!
To do this method, simply wash, peel, and remove the pits from your peaches. Next, slice the peaches in the same way as the above method. Line the baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the individual slices across the baking sheet and place in the freezer until firm, about 3 hours.
Remove from the freezer and place directly into an airtight Tupperware container. Keep these peaches frozen for up to two months.
Freezing Peaches in a Syrup Pack
This process takes a few extra steps, but you’ll be left with a yummy syrup perfect for using in pies!
Begin by blanching and slicing the peaches using the same method in the step-by-step instructions.
Next, combine 1 cup of sugar and 4 cups of water in a medium saucepan. Heat until the sugar dissolves. If foam forms on top, simply skim this off.
Chill the syrup completely.
Fill your freezer-friendly containers with sliced peaches. Pour the chilled syrup over the peaches, leaving ½ – 1-inch space at the top for expansion. You will need ½ cup to ⅔ cup of the syrup for every 2 cups of peaches.
When freezing, allow the container enough space inside the freezer for air to flow. Once they are frozen through, you can stack them. These peaches will stay fresh for 8-10 months.
How to Thaw Your Peaches
There are multiple ways to thaw your peaches. The most common way is to simply pull your peaches from the freezer, then place them in the refrigerator overnight to allow them to defrost slowly.
Tip: Place a paper plate under the bag of peaches in case some of the juices leak during the thawing process.
However, if you’re in a time crunch, you can always keep the peaches inside the plastic baggie and submerge it in a bowl of cool water. Check every 30 minutes until it’s fully thawed.
How Long to Store Your Frozen Peaches
As long as the air inside the plastic bag has been fully removed, peaches frozen using the step-by-step guide can be stored for up to a year. Even at the year mark, the peaches won’t spoil or be unusable. More than likely, they will become freezer burned, which can change the flavor of the peaches.
Recipe Ideas for Your Frozen Peaches
Now that you can use fresh peaches throughout the year, what will you make? Try one of these mouth-watering recipes!
Cool down on a warm summer night with Georgia Peach Homemade Ice Cream! This easy recipe only calls for a handful of ingredients and will make perfect, creamy, naturally peach-flavored ice cream.
Another delicious dessert option is Walnut Apple-Peach Crisp with Cinnamon-Brown Sugar Crumble. This twist on the classic crumble can be ready within the hour and will go perfectly with the fresh homemade peach ice cream you made!
Who says peaches are only for dessert? This Peach, Tomato, and Fried Farro Salad with Burrata is filling enough for a meal! Grab a bottle of wine and make this a date night.
Don’t miss out on drinking your fresh peaches, as well! This yummy Peach Lemonade recipe can be made both with or without alcohol, making it versatile for any lifestyle. And the best part? You won’t need to thaw your peaches before making it!
Looking for a healthy dessert or breakfast option? This Peach Smoothie will hit the spot! There are several variations to cut sugar further or add protein to your shake. Cut some calories and up your vitamin intake with this delightful blended drink!
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to peel the peaches before freezing?
Peeling the peaches first will make it easier to use them in a recipe that calls for peeled peaches. However, if you’re making a smoothie, it won’t hurt to use peaches with the skin intact. If you don’t care if the skin is still on the peaches, then skip this step and save yourself some time!
Do I need to blanch the peaches before moving through the freezing process?
Blanching your peaches first helps to peel them easier. And it will create less waste of the peach itself, saving you money and keeping the peaches more fully intact for use in your desserts!
Wrapping Up the Step-By-Step Guide to Freezing Peaches!
Are you ready to begin freezing your own peaches? Keeping the fresh taste of summer doesn’t need to be difficult. And using frozen peaches can bring a ray of sunshine to your home, even in the middle of winter. Get started freezing your peaches today!
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