How to Freeze Kale? From fresh to sliced
How to Freeze Kale? Kale can be stored fresh, cooked or sliced in the freezer for 3 to 6 months. Even a whole kale can go in the freezer. For longer storage, blanch kale for 3 minutes. It can then be kept for 12 months. For a smoothie, pack the kale in portions.
Kale is often eaten in the Netherlands during the winter period. It tastes sweeter when the frost has been over it, it really does. In America and nowadays also in the Netherlands, kale is seen as a superfood. But how can you freeze kale?
It’s no surprise that kale is seen as a superfood. It contains a lot of nutrients and minerals that the body needs every day. Kale is usually cooked for dinner. You can read how to do that in our blog about cooking kale in different ways.
Can You Freeze Kale?
This is a frequently asked question. How come? This has to do with the unfamiliarity of kale and the great interest in this vegetable today. Because of its superfood label, kale is more often sold in the supermarket. Yes, you can even put it in smoothies.
The answer to the above question is ‘yes’, kale can be frozen. You can read below which kale you can freeze and how you can do this. From fresh to packaged kale and cooked to blanched kale, we’ve got it all covered.
Freezing Fresh Kale
Fresh kale can go straight into the freezer. A whole kale can be frozen without further processing. Put it in a sealable freezer bag. If you want to cook this kale later, for example, you can break it very easily, after all it is frozen and it breaks down like that.
What I always do is zip or cut the kale off the stem and put it straight into the freezer bag, which goes into the freezer sealed. I never put a whole kale in the freezer like I bought it.
Make it easy on yourself and freeze the kale in portions. Since nothing else has been done with it, you can store this kale in the freezer for about 3 to 6 months. It retains its flavor and often the taste of the kale gets even better by freezing.
Freeze Sliced Kale
You can also store fresh cut kale that you buy in the refrigerator section of the supermarket in the freezer. The bag you have bought can usually be kept in the fridge for three days. Then you have to prepare it or you can freeze it.
You can put the unopened bag in the freezer. I usually pack the kale in the freezer bag that can be sealed and then put it in the freezer. This way I can grab an amount of kale that I need and close the rest again.
You can also put freshly cut kale that you cut yourself in the freezer. Again in a sealed freezer bag.
The shelf life of this kale is also about 3 to 6 months.
Freeze Kale Stew
One of the favorite stews in the winter period is the kale stew. And you may well have some left over. You can keep this kale stew in the fridge for about 3 days in a sealed container.
You can also freeze it for a longer period of time. Place the stew in a freezer container and seal it. Put the date on the lid, because the kale stew can only be kept for 1 to 2 months. After that, the taste quickly diminishes and the structure will change. If you want to eat this stew again, I advise you to first look, then smell and possibly taste whether the stew is still good. When in doubt, do not use again.
Kale Freezing Raw
Flavor is important with vegetables and with kale the taste only gets better when you keep it raw in the freezer for a while. Due to the cold, a change process occurs in the kale, which brings out more flavor. The starch is converted into sugars, so your kale tastes sweeter.
As described in the chapters above, you can freeze fresh, raw kale and you can also store sliced kale in the freezer.
Freeze Kale Without Blanching
Blanching is not necessary if you want to store kale in the freezer. Freezing raw, without blanching, allows the kale to convert the starch present into sugars, giving the kale more flavor.
Without blanching, you can store fresh cut kale in the freezer for 3 to 6 months.
If you want to keep it for a longer period of time, I recommend blanching it.
Freeze & Blanch Kale
For storing kale for longer than 3 to 6 months, you can blanch it. To do this, first clean the kale, cut the kale into pieces or zip the leaves from the stem.
Now heat a pan with water on your heat source and put a pan with ice water ready in the sink. If you don’t have ice water, put your colander in the sink.
When the water is boiling, add the kale to the pan and cook the kale for about 3 minutes. Then remove the kale from the pan with a slotted spoon and place it in the pan with ice water or in the colander. In the colander, rinse the kale for a long time with cold water. The cooking process is stopped by cooling.
Now all bacteria have been killed and you can store the kale in the freezer for 12 months. Place in a sealable freezer bag or container. And put the date of freezing on the packaging, because otherwise, you will certainly forget it.
Freeze Kale After Cooking
Not only can you keep kale after blanching, you can also freeze it after cooking. You need to let the kale cool down before putting it in the freezer. Of course, you do that in a freezer container or bag.
The storage time is shorter than with blanching, cooked or prepared kale can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Our blog about preparing kale gives you all the information on how to prepare kale in different ways.
Kale Freeze Smoothie
Kale is very popular today because it is considered a superfood. And you can often use superfoods in a smoothie. Of course you don’t want a whole kale in your smoothie, but luckily you can freeze and store kale as you have read extensively above.
First, clean the raw kale under the tap. Then you can freeze it. I recommend that you pack the kale per portion. That’s easy for later when you need it.