How to Freeze Blueberries

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Get our best tips on how to freeze blueberries so they do not clump or get buried under ice crystals. There is a secret to freezing, and this guide will walk you through all the steps.

This homesteading tip will help you fill your freezer with fresh, amazing produce that stays fresh all year long.

how to freeze blueberries

Where we live, blueberry season begins in early July and lasts until August. We have one large pick-your-own blueberry field near by that allows us to eat, pick, and eat our way to a few buckets filled with large juicy fruits.

Blueberries are a great plant to have on your homestead. Just a few bushes can give you lots of berries to enjoy. If you are new to growing berries, you can get access to our guide here: How to Grow Blueberries for Beginners.

If you do not have berry bushes, no worries, you can still stock up when they are in season when the prices are lower and more affordable. A few places to look are:

  1. Grocery store that purchases locally grown food.
  2. Farmer’s Market.
  3. Local produce stands.
  4. An Amish or Mennonite store. (They usually purchase locally)
a midlife woman buying fresh fruit at a farmers market

Do you need to wash blueberries before freezing?

They say it is best not to wash blueberries before freezing because they have a natural coating that protects the berries from drying out as well as mold from growing on the surface.

However, I routinely rinse our berries before freezing, and I have never noticed any difference between rinsing and not rinsing.

Tips for Freezing Berries

#1. Freeze the freshest berries. I like to pick berries the day I plan to freeze, ensuring I am getting them at their freshest. Plan to pick early in the morning so you have enough time, an energy, to clean and freeze your haul.

#2. Be sure they are dry before you freeze because it’s the wetness is what causes clumping. You gently hand dry the berries or allow them to air dry.

If you choose air drying, factor in that extra time when determining how much time you need to pick, clean, and freeze.

a cookie sheet with a layer of fresh blueberries

How to Freeze Blueberries

There are a few things you will want to do so you can freeze berries that do not clump or get hidden under a layer of ice.

Gather your supplies

You will need a few supplies for freezing.

  1. Baking sheets
  2. Parchment paper
  3. Freezer bags
  4. Magic marker

Clean if needed

As mentioned above, you may or may not want to clean your berries. I like to rinse them as I find it helps to remove the stems and other pieces of debris that tends to cling to berries. I do not suggest “washing” them, but rinsing should be fine.

Dry the berries

The most important part of freezing berries is ensuring they are dry. You can do this by gently dabbing the berries with paper towels or letting them air dry for about 15 minutes. If you lay them in a single layer on a paper towel, they will dry more quickly.

Par Freeze

Par freezing will ensure your berries do not clump but instead stay separated making them easier to remove and enjoy.

  1. Line baking sheets with a sheet of foil or parchement paper.
  2. Put a single layer of dry blueberries on each sheet.
  3. Put into the freezer uncovered for about 20 minutes.
  4. Keep the sheets in the freezer until ready to transfer over to freezer bags.
blueberries on cookie sheets on a kitchen counter near to a roll of foil

Put Into Freezer Bags

Final freezing will need to be done quickly as the par frozen berries will thaw out in just a few minutes.

  1. Label 1 quart freezer bags with the date and “Blueberry”
  2. Have the bags opened and ready to fill.
  3. One bag will be enough to hold a cookie sheet of par frozen berries.
  4. Remove the first baking sheet from the freezer and quickly put the berries into a 1-quart freezer bag.
  5. Gently remove as much air as you can and seal.
  6. Put in a flat layer in your freezer until completely frozen.
  7. Continue until all par berries are frozen.
blueberries in freezer bags sitting behind a baking sheet with frozen berries

How long will frozen blueberries last?

Blueberries that are frozen correctly and kept from being exposed to air will last 10-12 months.

How can you use frozen berries?

Once thawed, frozen berries will be mushy so eating them thawed or using as a garnish may not be the best option. However, there are so many other ways you can enjoy berries preserved this way.

  1. Eat frozen as a fun and cool snack.
  2. Use to make pies or muffins.
  3. Use for cobblers or puddings.
  4. Use in smoothies or in breakfast bowls.

More Tips on Freezing and Canning:

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