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Can You Freeze Fresh Vegetables Without Blanching?

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Freezing fresh vegetables is typically an easy task and a great way to meal-prep or store away vegetables to make them last a bit longer.

There are so many different vegetables out there that it becomes a chore to keep track of how to freeze each one and know you’re really doing it right. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Can you freeze fresh vegetables with blanching? Some vegetables require extra steps like blanching in order to freeze them properly, while other vegetables you can simply dice and freeze or even leave whole.  Most vegetables, however, freeze better with blanching.

In this guide, we will walk you through a series of popular fresh vegetables that freeze well and let you know just which ones you should blanch first and exactly how you can freeze each type of vegetable. 

Stick with us to learn how to freeze a variety of fresh vegetables and for which ones you can skip the blanching.

A Complete Guide to Freezing Fresh Vegetables

There are a lot of popular fresh vegetables that you can freeze. And some of them have their very own processes so we can’t really write a guide that just tells you how to freeze all vegetables in one simple process.

Instead, we will break it down for you from vegetable to vegetable, listed below:

  • Zucchini
  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Carrots
  • Corn on the cob
  • Squash
  • Potatoes
  • Green beans

If you just need to know about one of these veggies, feel free to scroll down and look for the header that designates the vegetable you’re after.

And if you’re wondering about freezing cooked vegetables or re-freezing, we’ve got you covered there, too.


Fresh zucchini is a vegetable that allows you to freeze with or without blanching it first.

On this particular vegetable, we recommend blanching, but you can make it work without blanching. Check out the steps with and without blanching below.

To freeze without blanching, you should plan to shred the zucchini, which may limit you slightly on how you serve it after freezing. You may want to turn your zucchini into zucchini noodles and freeze them that way.

Freezing Zucchini With Blanching

Here’s how to freeze zucchini by blanching:

  1. Start by rinsing your zucchini to get rid of any dirt or debris.
  2. Slice your zucchini into slices that are approximately 1/4 inch thick.
  3. Boil water to blanch the zucchini. Add the zucchini to the boiling water for one minute. 
  4. Fill a large bowl with ice and water and transfer the zucchini from the hot water directly to the ice bath. Let them sit for about 2 minutes. 
  5. Drain the zucchini slices and pat them dry. 
  6. Pre-freeze the zucchini by spacing them out on a baking sheet and freeze them 2-3 hours. 
  7. Once they are pre-frozen, you can transfer them to a storage container or a freezer bag. 
  8. Label and date and pop those zucchini slices in the freezer. 

Freezing Zucchini Without Blanching

As we said, we definitely recommend blanching zucchini before you freeze it. However, you don’t have to.

You can get away without blanching zucchini before you freeze it by following these steps:

  1. Shred your zucchini into fine ribbons.
  2. Separate your zucchini into desired portion sizes. We recommend 1-2 cups per serving.
  3. Place shredded zucchini into individual freezer bags per the measured servings.
  4. Label each bag with the amount of zucchini and a date.
  5. Freeze and use when you are ready.

As you can see, freezing zucchini is simple. If you want to freeze in slices, blanching is the best way to do it but if you are shredding zucchini, you can totally skip the blanching process. 


Asparagus can be a finicky fresh vegetable. It is best to blanch it before freezing it. If you do not blanch it, you may notice that it loses some of its color and flavor, and crisp texture that makes it so delightful to bite into. 

If you plan to freeze asparagus, you want it to be as fresh as possible. Remember that it won’t get any fresher in the freezer. We recommend always blanching asparagus to freeze it.

Freezing Asparagus With Blanching

Blanching and freezing asparagus is really simple. This is all you have to do:

  1. Trim the tough bottoms from the asparagus stems. Freeze these separately for soups or simply discard them. You can trim your asparagus to 1-2 inches or leave the spears whole. 
  2. Bring a large part of water to a boil for blanching and add the asparagus to the water. Allow to cook for 2-5 minutes until the asparagus turns bright green and is tender.
  3. Immerse the asparagus immediately into an ice bath. Leave them in the ice bath for the same number of minutes that you cooked them. 
  4. Drain and pat the asparagus dry. 
  5. Spread out the asparagus and pre-freeze for about 2 hours
  6. Move into storage containers or freezer bags. 
  7. Label and date all storage methods and freeze away.


Broccoli is best when frozen after a blanching process. Experts don’t recommend freezing it without blanching, as it can affect the flavor and crisp texture to do so.

Blanching is a simple process that preserves that bright green color and crisp flavor of broccoli. 

Freezing Broccoli With Blanching

Blanching and freezing broccoli is really simple. All you have to do is:

  1. Wash the florets and separate them into pieces.
  2. You can brine if you prefer, but it is not required.
  3. Blanch the broccoli by adding it to a pot of boiling water. Allow to boil for 3 minutes
  4. Immediately remove and place in an ice bath. Allow to stay in the ice bath for 3 minutes
  5. Drain the broccoli and pat it dry. 
  6. Start with a quick freeze process and spread your florets out on a baking sheet. Freeze for about 2 hours
  7. Package into portion sizes and individual freezer-safe bags or containers.
  8. Label, date, and toss in the freezer for up to 9 months.


Cauliflower is very similar to broccoli in style, build, and texture. Cauliflower is another fresh vegetable that freezes best if you blanch it first.

You can skip the blanching, but we don’t recommend it, as cauliflower has a tendency to turn slightly mushy if you don’t blanch it. 

Freezing Cauliflower With Blanching

If you already read about how to blanch broccoli above, blanching and freezing cauliflower will seem really familiar. Just follow these steps:

  1. Rinse your cauliflower head to remove any dirt or debris.
  2. Separate and cut into florets and smaller pieces. 
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil for blanching and add the cauliflower for 1-2 minutes
  4. Transfer immediately to an ice water bath and let the cauliflower chill for 2 minutes
  5. Drain cauliflower and pat it dry to remove as much moisture as possible. 
  6. Spread the florets out on a baking sheet and pre-freeze for about 2 hours
  7. Once you have pre-frozen the cauliflower, separate it into various servings of choice and place into containers or freezer bags for storage. 
  8. Label and date all packaging and freeze for up to 9 months

If you decide to skip the blanching process, do not skip the pre-freeze method. We do not recommend skipping blanching for cauliflower. 


You can freeze fresh carrots with or without blanching. Some experts say that the nutrients are better preserved if you blanch them, but you can really go either way. It is totally up to you.

If you are freezing baby carrots, they freeze really well without blanching. We will share the freezing process for both methods here since you can freeze carrots either way. 

Freezing Carrots With Blanching

While you can choose to skip blanching your carrots, here’s how to freeze your carrots if you decide to blanch them anyway:

  1. Rinse fresh carrots and cut off any stems or greens as needed. 
  2. Go ahead and slice the carrots down to whatever size or even various sizes if you want. Baby carrots can be left whole. 
  3. Fill a large pot with water and bring it to a boil. Add the carrots and boil 5 minutes for baby carrots or whole carrots and 3 minutes for julienned or sliced carrots. 
  4. Immediately move to an ice water bath and let them cool for the same amount of time you let them cook. 
  5. Drain well. 
  6. Separate into portions as desired and place into freezer containers or freezer bags. Release as much air as possible. 
  7. Label, date, and seal all packaging. 

Freezing Carrots Without Blanching

If you’ve decided to favor saving time over the somewhat unnecessary process of blanching your carrots, here’s how to freeze them without the hassle:

  1. Rinse and clean carrots and then pat them dry. 
  2. Chop off the tops and stems of full-sized carrots. Baby carrots don’t need to be cut. 
  3. Slice into desired sizes. 
  4. Complete a pre-freeze process by spreading the carrots out on a baking sheet and allowing them to freeze like this for about 24 hours
  5. Transfer the carrots into freezer bags or containers in desired portions. 
  6. Label, date, and seal all packaging. 

Both processes are pretty simple and both are effective. It all depends on your preferences and whether you want to get it out of the way all at the same time or whether you are willing to come back in a day to finish up. 

Corn on the Cob

If you plan to leave your corn on the cob for freezing, there is no need to blanche it. You can simply follow a pre-freeze process and freeze it without messing with blanching.

You can also blanch it if you prefer, and this will make it easier if you plan to remove the corn from the cob. However, for corn left on the cob, no blanching is necessary. 

Freezing Corn Left on the Cob

Freezing leftover corn on the cob is so simple. Here is all you have to do:

  1. Peel the corn husks and remove all silks.
  2. You may want to cut the cobs in half to make it easier to package them for freezing.
  3. Set the corn on the cob on a baking sheet and spread out for pre-freezing.
  4. Pre-freeze corn on the cob for 2-3 hours
  5. Remove from the freezer and wrap each cob in a layer of tight plastic wrap. 
  6. Pack the corn on the cob into freezer bags or freezer containers in desired portion sizes. 
  7. Label, date, and freeze for up to 12 months

Easy peasy! If you are at all concerned, you can add a blanching process to this same procedure, but it is not required for quality freezing. 


Whether or not you blanch squash really depends on how long you plan to freeze it. If you only plan to freeze it for 2-4 months, you can skip the blanching.

However, we recommend blanching it so you can be prepared to freeze it for as long as needed without having to worry about preserving the flavor.

While we recommend blanching, it is possible to do without. If you do decide to freeze squash without blanching, consider shredding it and following the steps we shared for freezing zucchini without blanching, as these are very similar. 

Freezing Squash With Blanching

Here’s how to freeze and blanch squash to best preserve its flavor and texture:

  1. Wash and clean squash to remove any dirt or debris.
  2. Cut into rounds that are about 1/4 inch in thickness.
  3. Bring a pot of water to a boil and add the zucchini to boiling water. Let boil for 3-5 minutes
  4. Remove from hot water and immediately place into an ice water bath. Let them chill for the same amount of time you let them boil. 
  5. Drain well and then pat the pieces dry as much as possible. 
  6. Spread out on a baking sheet and pre-freeze for 1-2 hours
  7. Move to freezer bags or storage containers in portions of choice. 
  8. Label, date, and seal all packaging and freeze for up to 12 months


Potatoes can be very hard to freeze raw or fresh because they have a heavy water content on their own. You should plan to par-boil potatoes to freeze them, which is very similar to the blanching process except without the ice bath.

Freezing Potatoes With Par-Boiling

While blanching isn’t technically necessary to freeze potatoes, par-boiling is. Here’s how to do it and freeze your potatoes afterward:

  1. Scrub the potatoes and cut out any patches that look discolored or papery. You can peel them if you like, but it’s totally up to you. Otherwise, cube them or dice them to the desired sizes. 
  2. Par boil the potatoes, which is essentially the same as blanching. Bring your water to a boil and then add the potatoes. If they are cut, you should boil them 4-6 minutes. You just want them to reach slightly fork tender without completely softening. 
  3. Drain and pat the potatoes dry. 
  4. Separate into desired portions and package up for freezing using either a container or freezer bags. 
  5. Label, date, and seal all packaging. 

Green Beans

Green beans can be frozen blanched or not blanched. We actually have a whole guide to freezing green beans, but we’ll summarize it here.

In this case, it is totally up to you. If you think they will be frozen for more than 6 months, this may be your trigger to blanch them. 

By now, you are probably familiar with how to blanch. For green beans, this means adding them to boiling water for about 3-4 minutes and then transferring them to the ice for the same amount of time. 

Freezing Green Beans Without Blanching

Luckily, you can skip blanching for green beans if you’re running short on time. Here’s how to freeze them without it:

  1. Trim the ends from both sides of the green beans.
  2. Cut your green beans in half. 
  3. Rinse and clean off the green beans before getting started.
  4. Be sure that your beans are completely dry. Drain them and pat them dry the best that you can. 
  5. Let them lay out and dry as much as possible.
  6. Portion out to your desired portions and separate into freezer bags or containers. 
  7. Label, date, and seal all packaging and freeze for up to 12 months

Up Next: The 9 Best Canned Vegetables

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