Last Updated on August 7, 2022 by Share My Kitchen
Do you know how to freeze kale? Kale is an interesting, nutritious vegetable that can be frozen and enjoyed later in the year when fresh produce is not available.
You can definitely have at least one kale plant in your own garden too. They are incredibly hardy, and they can keep producing heartily for several months. And, depending on where you are, they can survive through winter.
Kale is so productive that you can have at least one bag of frozen kale in your freezer. It’s easy to add frozen kale to smoothies, sauces, and soups to give it a boost in nutrition, color and flavor. Also, it’s easy to freeze. Even if your garden is small to grow your own kale plant, it’s a good idea to stock kale in your freezer when it’s in season, and when it is on sale at your local farmers’ market or grocery store. This is how you properly freeze kale.
What is the best way to preserve kale?
It is highly recommended to freeze kale in order to preserve it. Freezing the kale locks in the nutrients, and, unlike other greens such as spinach, kale is sturdy enough to keep much of its texture even after being frozen.
- 1 pound kale
How to Freeze Kale
Kale is one of the easiest vegetables to store in the freezer. Here’s the right way how:
- Make sure to wash the kale thoroughly.
- Use towels or a salad spinner to dry the kale. Moisture on the leaves of the kale can cause freezer burn.
- Remove the kale leaves from the woody stem.
- Layer the kale on a large oven-safe baking sheet. It is possible to make multiple layers of kale since kale freezes fine when stacked up, as long as they are dry. Flash freeze in the freezer for 2 to 3 hours.
- Transfer the frozen kale leaves into a freezer container of your choice.
- Label the containers, and freeze them for up to one year, depending on the container you use.
Do I need to wash it before freezing the kale?
It is recommended! It is possible for leafy greens to pick up dirt from wind and rain, so make sure you wash them well before freezing. Then, dry them properly with a salad spinner.
Is it possible freezing the kale when fresh without blanching?
Yes! It is recommended, in fact, since unblanched Kale maintains its texture well. However, blanching kale makes it take up less space in the freezer, as the kale has already wilted. In order to blanch kale, you need to bring a large pot of water to boil, add the kale for 1-2 minutes, or until it becomes bright green and starts to wilt. Immediately plunge the kale in an ice bath to stop the cooking process.
Does freezing the kale lose its nutritional value?
Nope! Actually, freezing kale preserves its nutrients. It’s just as rich in vitamins and minerals as fresh kale!
How do you properly store kale in the freezer?
These are the best ways to store frozen kale:
- Glass Food Storage Containers – These containers can be reused, and it is easy to see what is stored inside. However, these containers can be more expensive and take up more space than other options. So, you can also mix and match other containers and bags.
- Glass Canning Jars – If you have lots of mason jars, like the ones with straight sides (no shoulders), you have jars that are perfect for freezing.
- Zip-top Freezer Bags – Freezer bags make a great starting point since they can be purchased at most grocery stores. They also don’t take up much space.
How long can kale keep in the freezer?
Kale can last in the freezer for up to 6 months and up to a year before it starts to lose its quality.
Do I need to thaw frozen Kale before using it?
Nope, you don’t need to! The kale will quickly thaw in hot food. Here are some ideas for how to use your frozen kale:
- Add some in your blender to make delicious smoothies.
- Use smoothie booster packets to save you time in the morning.
- Combine it with your favorite pasta sauce.
- Vegetable Beef Soup is super flexible. You can use frozen kale as one of the vegetables!
- Instead of spinach, heat up some kale to make these sweet potato breakfast bowls.
- Add a few to hot soups or stews.
- You can always make breakfast hash more delicious with some little green.
- You can use kale in place of spinach in Chicken Spinach Alfredo Pizza. First, thaw the greens in the fridge, then squeeze out any excess water before adding them to your pizza.
- Zuppa Toscana can be used to add greens to your winter diet.
- Use frozen kale to make Turkey Florentine Meatballs. Also, you can use kale pesto to make the spaghetti squash noodles as its companion.