Even if you love cooking, in the heat of the summer, sometimes turning on your stove is the last thing you want to do. But you still have to eat, right?
Gazpacho is your solution!
You can make a huge batch of fresh, hearty soup without having to heat anything up or feel the weight of a heavy, winter soup. Gazpacho is designed for the sunshine and patio.
If you’re used to batch cooking your meals to save time you may be wondering if you can freeze gazpacho.
So can you freeze gazpacho? Yes, you can make a huge batch of gazpacho and freeze it to last you through the entire summer. Smooth gazpacho is easy to freeze and will thaw beautifully, almost as if it were fresh from the same day. You can freeze chunky gazpacho as well, but the texture won’t be as pleasant.
We’ll walk you through our top gazpacho making and saving tips in this article.
Your Guide to Freezing Gazpacho
Gazpacho is a cold soup that comes to us from Spain, specifically the Andalusian region. It is influenced by cuisines from all over Eastern Europe and the Middle East, so you’ll find a variety of rich flavors and ingredients incorporated into this very versatile meal.
Traditional gazpacho was made by mashing stale bread into a mixture of olive oil, garlic, vinegar, and water and then adding vegetables and nuts to the broth. It was a hearty soup that could include whatever vegetable was on hand, and a great way to use up old bread, so as nothing went to waste.
More modern adaptations of gazpacho tend to make the base out tomato (which is technically a fruit). Occasionally called a “liquid salad”, some of the most common additions to the broth include cucumbers, bell peppers, sweet onions, and even avocado.
The soup can be made simply from completely raw ingredients, or you can saute some onions, garlic, and herbs to add a more caramelized flavor to the soup before chilling it. Some people blend all their ingredients whereas others prefer a heartier, chunky gazpacho.
This is the soup of individuals, and you can experiment daily to find your own favorite and personalized recipe.
How To Freeze Gazpacho
Possibly because it’s so easy to make, and just as easy to get carried away as you make it, you might find yourself with a great deal more gazpacho that you can eat immediately. If this is the case, you can freeze your soup.
There are some slight technique differences to keep in mind, depending on whether you blended your soup smooth or left it chunky, so we’ll go through the best practices of each separately.
How to Freeze Smooth Gazpacho
It is best to freeze in single-serving containers, or at least in containers to serve however many people you intend to serve in the future. In other words, you don’t want to thaw all your gazpacho and then have enough leftovers that you’re tempted to freeze the soup a second time – this is not a good idea.
Once you have separated it into appropriate serving sizes, simply pour your soup into either a freezer-safe Ziploc bag or a freezer-safe Tupperware container, preferably glass.
If you use a Ziploc bag, carefully lay it flat on your counter to remove all the air from the liquid before sealing. When you put it in your freezer, make sure it is completely flat, at least until it’s frozen solid. Once it’s frozen you can stand it upright to save space.
If you store your soup in a glass Tupperware container, make sure you leave about 1 inch of space on the surface because it will expand a bit, and you want there to be room to grow.
It’s always a good idea to write the date of freezing on your containers. Try to use your soup within 6 – 8 months.
How to Freeze Chunky Gazpacho
Most of the above instructions will stand true for freezing a chunky gazpacho as well, but it’s important to consider what kind of chunks are in your soup before freezing, as it is the chunks that may or may not freeze well, and that will vary based on your own personal recipe.
Some general rules include:
- Vegetables with high water content don’t tend to freeze very well because ice crystals form inside of them and rule the structure, leaving them mushy and unappealing. In a soup, this is less likely to happen because the entire mixture is liquid, though I would still hesitate to freeze cucumber, especially.
- Chunky pieces of bread will also not freeze well, as they’ll disintegrate into a very odd texture in your soup. If you plan on blending the soup after thawing it, this won’t be a problem.
How to Thaw Frozen Gazpacho
It’s best to know ahead of time when you’re going to want to eat your gazpacho again so that you can let it thaw in the fridge. Since this is a soup you serve cold, you definitely don’t want to try defrosting it in your microwave.
You can let it thaw 90% on your counter to save some time and then let it finish defrosting in your fridge. It’s easiest to simply let it thaw overnight, the day before you want to serve it.
If you have frozen a blended, smooth soup, you will probably want to give it another quick whip in your blender to reintegrate all your ingredients and smooth out anything that may have frozen together over time.
If you have frozen a chunky gazpacho, you will definitely want to give it a good stir before serving it. As previously mentioned, not all chunks are going to retain their texture, so you may want to taste the soup before serving and weigh the benefits of serving it as a smooth gazpacho this time.
A great middle road is to blend it smooth and then add some more fresh vegetables or herbs to the soup.
Alternative Ways to Store and Use Gazpacho
The simplest way to store gazpacho is simply in your fridge. It will stay fresh for up to 5 days if you store it in a Tupperware container with an airtight seal.
It’s highly recommended you choose a glass container for your soup because many of the ingredients that are used will stain plastic, namely tomatoes. Also, storing liquids in plastic for extended periods of time is not ideal because you increase the risk of allowing potentially harmful toxins into your food.
If you don’t want to freeze your gazpacho and you don’t think you’ll eat all your leftovers, here are a few creative ways to bring new life to your soup:
- Add some fresh, finely chopped onions, garlic, and hot peppers and turn it into salsa
- Pour it into your slow cooker or crockpot, add some beans, rice and maybe some chunks of meat and make a hearty stew
- Cook some pasta noodles and use your gazpacho as a sauce for a cold pasta salad
- Add some gazpacho to a deep pan and simmer a fillet of fresh fish or a chicken breast
- Pour into your blender, add some fresh fruits and make a smoothie
How long will gazpacho keep in the refrigerator?
Depending on what ingredients you use, and whether your soup is smooth or chunky, gazpacho will likely last in your fridge for 4 – 5 days.
If you have left it chunky and included tender vegetables like cucumber, they may wilt and go a bit soggy after a day or two. If you have included avocado in your soup, it may brown a bit, though the acid of the tomato should keep it fairly fresh.
You may want to check on your soup after a few days, just to be sure it is still smelling delicious and looking fresh.
Is gazpacho the main dish?
You can serve gazpacho as your main dish, as a side dish or, if you’re feeling really Spanish, as a tapa. A tapa is an appetizer or small meal in Spain. If you’re feeling like a light afternoon snack, gazpacho can be perfect for the occasion. You can also serve a bowl as a starter, or a side to your dish.
If you want to use the gazpacho as your feature, you can add bulk to it by adding fresh, raw ingredients that are higher in fat or protein, like nuts and seeds, avocado or even some sashimi quality salmon or tuna.
What goes good with gazpacho?
Gazpacho is a Spanish dish with a slightly Mediterranean feel to it, and it is perfect for a warm summer’s day. For all these reasons, some of the best dishes to serve with your gazpacho are equally fresh and cooling.
Think of chopped salads with plenty of crispy veggies to offset the softness of the soup, or perhaps a quinoa or bean salad to add something a bit heavier and more filling to your meal. In my books, you can never go wrong with a fresh-baked baguette to dip into olive oil and balsamic vinegar.