Freezing fruit is a super easy way to save the great flavors of ripe in-season fruit to enjoy later in the year. Whether you're freezing berries or cherries, peaches or plums, the principle is the same and it's a breeze; just follow the three steps below.
1. Prepare the Fruit
All fruit should be rinsed clean and patted dry before freezing.
- Apples and Pears need to be cored, peeled, and quartered or sliced and then tossed with a bit of lemon juice or cider vinegar to keep them from browning
- Apricots should be halved and pitted, large ones can be quartered, if you like
- Blackberries, blueberries, and raspberries can be left whole
- Cherries will be easier to use later if you pit them now
- Melons can be cut into cubes or slices or scooped into bite-size balls
- Peaches, plums, and nectarines should be pitted and peeled and may be sliced or cut into wedges, if you like
- Strawberries need to be hulled and can be cut in halves or quarters, if you like
2. Freeze the Fruit
Lay the prepared fruit in a single layer on a large baking sheet or pan (make sure it fits flat in your freezer first!). You can line the pan with parchment paper, waxed paper, or aluminum foil, if you like. Make sure the fruit isn't crowded and the pieces are touching as little as possible.
Put the fruit-laden sheet, flat, in the freezer until the fruit is frozen solid. This usually takes an hour or two. You can leave the fruit in the freezer uncovered like this up to overnight.
3. Transfer Fruit for Frozen Storage
Once the fruit is frozen through, transfer it to heavy-duty freezer bags. Press out as much of the air as possible (you can get maniacal about it with a vacuum sealer if you have one, or suck the air out with a straw), seal the bag, and store it in the back or coldest part of the freezer.
Frozen fruit will last up to a year in a stand-alone freezer that isn't opened and closed a lot, and up to 6 months in a frequently opened refrigerator-freezer.