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How to Blanch Squash for Freezing

by
author image Natalie Smith
Natalie Smith is a technical writing professor specializing in medical writing localization and food writing. Her work has been published in technical journals, on several prominent cooking and nutrition websites, as well as books and conference proceedings. Smith has won two international research awards for her scholarship in intercultural medical writing, and holds a PhD in technical communication and rhetoric.
How to Blanch Squash for Freezing
Squash Photo Credit los_angela/iStock/Getty Images

The word "squash" comes from the Narragansett word that means "to eat raw or green." You certainly won't be eating your squash raw or green, and you must cook it even before you freeze it to make sure that the squash retains its color and texture once it is thawed. The process of cooking squash is called blanching. When you blanch squash, you boil it just long enough to stop the enzymes that cause squash to deteriorate. Summer squash contains only 38 calories, but 3 cups of fiber in a 1-cup serving, and the same serving of winter squash contains 94 calories, 3 grams of fiber and is rich in vitamin A. The process for preparing and blanching squash for freezing depends on whether you are freezing summer or winter squash.

Summer Squash

Step 1

Rinse the summer squash thoroughly to remove any dirt from the surface. Cut off the stem, then cut the squash into 1/2-inch slices or cubes. You do not need to peel the squash.

Step 2

Bring 8 cups of water to a boil over high heat in a stockpot. Add the squash slices or cubes and blanch them in the boiling water for 3 minutes.

Step 3

Pour the blanched squash into a colander to drain. The squash will still be hard.

Step 4

Pour the drained squash into a large bowl filled with ice and water. The ice will stop the cooking process. Allow the squash to cool completely in the ice.

Step 5

Pour the squash back into the colander and allow it to drain. Place the squash in resealable freezer bags. The squash will be good for up to six months in your freezer.

Winter Squash

Step 1

Rinse the winter squash thoroughly to remove any dirt from the surface. Cut off the stem. Peel the squash with a knife. The skin on a winter squash is not edible. Scoop out and discard the seeds and pulp. Cut the squash into 1/2-inch slices or cubes.

Step 2

Bring 8 cups of water to a boil over high heat in a stockpot. Add the squash slices or cubes and blanch them in the boiling water for 3 minutes.

Step 3

Pour the blanched squash into a colander to drain. The squash will still be hard.

Step 4

Pour the drained squash into a large bowl filled with ice and water. Allow the squash to cool completely in the ice.

Step 5

Pour the squash back into the colander and allow it to drain. Place the squash in resealable freezer bags. The squash will be good for up to six months in your freezer.

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