Quick Answer : Can You Freeze Cucumber?
Yes. You can freeze cucumbers, even though they have up to 95% water content. While many experts do not recommend freezing recipes containing cucumbers, there should not be any problems with freezing cucumbers. But, the freezing process requires you to prepare the cucumbers well. So, let us understand how to prepare the cucumbers for freezing and also how to freeze them for later consumption.
How Do You Freeze Cucumbers?
You can freeze cucumbers in various ways. Generally, we do not recommend freezing cucumbers whole because the water content in them can make the vegetables soggy while defrosting. You end up with a mushy mess. However, slicing cucumbers before freezing allows you to freeze them properly. Here are some methods of freezing cucumbers.
Freezing Cucumbers Using The Brine Method
Peeling the cucumbers is an individual choice. If you love to have the cucumbers with their skin, you can freeze them without peeling. However, slicing them is crucial.
- Put the sliced cucumber pieces in a large bowl. Add some sliced onions and two tablespoons of salt. Mix them well.
- Let the sliced cucumbers remain for about two hours before washing them with cold water.
- Drain the water and transfer the cucumber slices to another container.
- Add sugar (2/3 cup), celery seeds (one teaspoon), oil, and vinegar (white vinegar or apple cedar vinegar).
- Place the cucumbers and the brine solution in airtight plastic containers, glass jars, or freezer-safe ziplock bags. Leave space at the top, allowing the liquids to expand during freezing.
- Seal the bags and note the freezing date.
- Place the ziplock bags inside the freezer, allowing the cucumber slices to freeze.
Freezing Cucumbers In The Cookie Sheet Mode
Wash the cucumbers well before slicing them.
- Line a cookie sheet with greaseproof or parchment paper and place the cucumber slices on them, ensuring they do not touch each other.
- Push the cookie sheet into the freezer and allow the slices to freeze for two to three hours. The cucumber slices should solidify.
- Once they solidify, transferring them from the freezer to a freezer-safe plastic ziplock bag or container is easy.
- Vacuum seal the bags or containers before returning them to the freezer and continue freezing the cucumber slices.
Freezing Cucumbers Using The Ice Cube Tray Method
- Wash the cucumbers well and cut them into small pieces. Alternatively, you grate the cucumbers and separate the liquids from the pulp.
- Add mint, lemon slices, and rosemary if required. Mix well and scoop the mixture into ice cube trays.
- Add the separated liquids to the cube compartments. Please ensure maintaining sufficient space for the juices to expand during freezing.
Once frozen, you can use the cucumber cubes to enhance the flavors of cocktails and beverages.
Freezing Cucumber Puree
- Wash the cucumbers and slice them. Blend the cucumber slices with water in a food processor. Ensure to have a smooth paste.
- You can add lemon juice to the cucumber puree before scooping them into ice cube trays.
- Place the trays into the freezer allowing the cucumber puree to freeze well.
You can add these cubes directly to enhance the cold drink’s flavor or to the gazpacho soup as you serve it chilled.
How Long Do The Frozen Cucumber Slices Last In The Freezer?
Cucumbers can last six to nine months in the freezer, provided you prepare them well for freezing.
How Do You Defrost Frozen Cucumbers?
Ideally, you thaw the frozen cucumbers inside the refrigerator. Then, transfer the slices from the freezer and place them in a large bowl inside the fridge overnight. The process takes around six hours, but the thawing is thorough.
Once thawed, you can drain the cucumber slices of all the condensed water and use them for cucumber salads, soups, and other recipes. The thawed cucumbers will be soft and mushy, not crisp like when fresh.
Please refrain from defrosting the frozen cucumber at room temperature or in the microwave. The sudden change in the temperature levels can make the cucumbers mushy and lose their texture. Besides, it allows bacterial contamination.
Can You Refreeze Cucumbers?
No. It is not advisable to refreeze cucumbers. The texture can change drastically, leaving an unpalatable messy mixture at the end. Therefore, we do not recommend refreezing cucumbers.
Can You Freeze Cucumbers And Tomatoes?
Both cucumbers and tomatoes contain a lot of water content. However, you can freeze the cucumber and tomato slices together. Though you can freeze tomatoes whole, we do not recommend the same with cucumbers because the water condensation can make them a mushy mess after defrosting.
Can You Freeze Cucumbers For Smoothies?
You can freeze the cucumbers by pureeing or juicing them with water. The ice cube tray mode is the ideal way to freeze cucumbers for smoothies. You can directly add the cucumber to the smoothies and defrost them during the blending activity.
Can You Freeze Cucumber Salad?
It is possible to freeze cucumber slices for salads. However, we do not recommend adding other salad ingredients to the cucumber before the freezing process. The freezing cucumbers can spoil the other vegetables because of their excessive water content.
Can You Freeze Cucumber Juice?
It is possible to freeze cucumber juice in an airtight container inside the freezer for some days. However, we recommend finishing the frozen cucumber juice soon to enjoy its optimal taste.
Can You Freeze Cucumbers Before Pickling?
Yes. It is possible to freeze cucumbers before pickling using the brine method. We have discussed the process in detail.
Can You Freeze Cucumber Soup?
You can freeze cucumber soup and consume it later. However, we do not recommend freezing other soups with cucumber slices because the cucumbers can become a bit mushy after freezing.
Can You Freeze Cucumbers For Water?
Yes. It is possible to freeze cucumbers for water. But we do not recommend freezing whole cucumbers. It is better to slice them before freezing.
Can You Freeze Cucumber Sticks?
We do not advise cucumber sticks whole because they can become mushy after freezing and defrosting. A better way is slicing the cucumber sticks and freezing them.
Can You Freeze Cucumber Slices For Drinks?
Yes. You can freeze cucumber slices for drinks in various ways, as described here.
Usually, we do not recommend freezing salads and soups that have cucumber because they can become soggy after freezing. However, freezing cucumbers is not an issue because you can freeze them sliced, cubed, grated, or pureed. So, you can freeze cucumber.