Freezing okra without blanching is easy! I'll show you how to freeze fresh okra either sliced or whole okra pods. This simple technique to freeze okra is a great way to make sure you have a steady supply of this versatile green vegetable all year round.
If you know me, you know I love to grow my own produce in my backyard garden. In fact I did grow and harvest the okra in all the pictures shown below!
Whether it’s one pound or one bushel of okra, the technique is the same on how to prepare okra for freezing. I freeze okra usually without cornmeal and without blanching first.
Do you wash okra before freezing?
Yes, I recommend rinsing okra before you slice it up for freezing. Just rinse the okra pods long enough to remove any dirt, but not longer as you don't want them to take on any excess water. Then, let them dry completely on a kitchen towel.
Can you freeze fresh okra without blanching?
Yes! Freezing okra without blanching is easy. There's no need to blanch okra before flash-freezing it in the freezer if you are freezing it for 6 months or less.
For best results freezing okra without blanching for longer than 6 months, I recommend using a vacuum sealer machine to freeze air-tight.
Scroll down to the bottom for the printable and detailed instructions.
Here's how to freeze okra from garden, farmers market or the grocery store.
- Rinse the fresh okra pods in water to remove dirt.
- Remove the okra to a towel on the counter in a single layer to dry, then slice the okra pods, trimming off the ends.
TIP: Don't let the okra soak too long or it will absorb too much water.
- Place the slices of okra in a single layer on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Freeze about 2 hours or until frozen.
Tip: Ensure you use a baking sheet that will fit easily into your freezer.
- Once frozen, remove the okra from the freezer.
- Place in sealable zip-top bags or freezer containers and return to the freezer until ready to use. (See tip below about using a FoodSaver.)
TIP: Be sure to squeeze out any excess air if using a zip-top freezer bag as this will stop air pockets forming which can result in freezer burn and ice crystals on the okra in the freezer.
I hope this has answered your question "Can I freeze okra?". If you still have questions, you can always comment below or email me!
How to freeze fresh okra whole?
I've chosen to freeze the okra in slices, but you can also freeze okra whole, using exactly the same process. However, during the initial freezing stage when freezing the okra on the baking sheet, increase the time in freezer from 2 hours to 4 hours as whole okra will take longer to freeze.
How to freeze okra with cornmeal?
However, if you wish to bread the okra before freezing, add it just after slicing. I'd suggest using plain cornmeal, not cornbread mix. I don't add flour because it tends to stick to the okra, first, leaving the cornmeal to fall off easier. Do this JUST BEFORE the okra is completely dry on the kitchen towel so the cornmeal will stick to the okra. Then, freeze in a single layer in the freezer before putting in a freezer bag.
I typically freeze okra without cornmeal, this means I can use the frozen okra for a variety of difference dishes.
How long can you freeze okra?
Raw okra can be stored in the freezer for up to 6 months, probably a little longer, although the quality will start to deteriorate.
My favorite way to freeze vegetables is in vacuum sealed bags like FoodSaver. It will last even longer in the freezer this way.
How to freeze okra for frying later?
Use the same method as detailed above for freezing okra coated with cornmeal.
You can take frozen, cornmeal-coated okra straight from the freezer and make my Oven-Fried Okra and just add about 5 minutes to the baking time.
Using these easy freezing methods, I can eat my homegrown okra all year round.
If you make this recipe I'd love to see it! Tag me on social media with #gritsandgouda or @gritsandgouda. Leave a comment below the printable recipe if you have questions or tell me how you liked the recipe. Don't forget to rate it 5 stars if you love it!
Easy recipes with okra
How to Freeze Okra
- FoodSaver vacuum sealer machine (optional)
- 1 pound fresh okra
- Rinse the fresh okra pods in a bowl or tub of water to remove dirt. Do not let to okra soak long.
- Remove the okra to a kitchen towel on the counter in a single layer to dry.
- Cut the okra into 1/2-inch slices and place in a single layer on a parchment or wax paper-lined baking sheet (that will fit in your freezer).
- Freeze about 2 hours or until frozen.
- Once frozen, remove the okra and place in sealable zip-top bags or freezer containers. Squeeze out any excess air if using zip-top bag.
- Label the bag and return to the freezer until you are ready to use.
Nutrition analysis on GritsAndGouda.com recipes are mostly calculated on an online nutrition calculator. I am not a dietitian and nutritional information is an estimate and can vary based on products used.