Can You Freeze Oranges?
Quick Answer : Can You Freeze Oranges?
Oranges freeze well. So, there should not be a problem freezing them. However, oranges can be frozen in various ways. Each method requires different preparation. So, learning how to freeze them in different ways is crucial. We shall discuss these aspects in this article. So, shall we know how to freeze oranges and get the best out of this delicious fruit?
How Do You Freeze Oranges?
Generally, we consume oranges as soon as we purchase them. However, if we buy them by the crate or in dozens, there can be questions regarding their preservation. Thankfully, oranges do not go sour immediately. They can last for four to five days at room temperature and a couple more days when refrigerated. So, you have time to think about how to store them. Freezing oranges is an excellent option as it increases their shelf life.
The freezing method depends on how you plan to use the oranges after defrosting. Usually, fruits become soft after defrosting. So, it is best to use them in smoothies, milkshakes, etc.
We can freeze oranges in various ways. The easiest method is to freeze them whole. You can also peel them and freeze the individual segments. Orange juice is also a good candidate for freezing.
Freezing Whole Oranges
Freezing whole oranges is simple, but we suggest preparing them for freezing.
- Washing the oranges is crucial because they can contain fertilizer residue that is harmful to health. Secondly, you can dewax the oranges if that is what you usually do. Waxing the oranges is essential if you plan to zest them. Now comes the peeling part. If you have a citrus juicer, we advise leaving the peel on. But, a masticating or a centrifugal juicer requires you to peel the orange. It saves the trouble of doing it after defrosting.
- You can cut the oranges in half with the peel intact. It saves the trouble of cutting the orange for juicing after defrosting.
- Put the oranges in a ziplock bag. Squeeze the air out completely before sealing it airtight.
- Please stick the date label and place the bag inside the freezer allowing the oranges to freeze.
We advise zesting the orange when it is frozen. However, holding the frozen orange in your hands can be uncomfortably cold. Frozen oranges can be thawed and juiced. You can also add them to various dishes.
Freezing Unpeeled Orange Slices
Here is an alternative method of freezing oranges with the peel intact. However, this method takes time because it involves slicing the oranges thin with the peel on.
- Slice the oranges into full circles or semi-circles according to individual preferences.
- Place the orange slices neatly on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Please ensure that the pieces do not touch each other because they can stick together during freezing.
- Push the sheet inside the freezer, allowing the orange slices to solidify. It takes around four hours for the pieces to freeze.
- Remove the frozen slices and place them inside a freezer-safe ziplock bag for freezing.
- Remove excess air before sealing the bag securely. Label it and place it inside the freezer.
Freezing The Individual Segments
Generally, the most recommended freezing method is the dry pack method. It consumes the least time and is hence the most convenient. Alternate methods like pectin syrup packing or sugar syrup packing are available. But, these methods are ideal for people who like to spend more time freezing oranges. So, the dry pack method is the best if you are looking for a quick fix to freezing oranges.
- Peel the oranges and remove as much pitch as you generally do.
- Remove the individual segments. You can remove the membranes and seeds if you wish to. But, that should not be necessary now. But, if you have the time, you can do so.
- Pack the individual orange segments in a freezer-safe ziplock bag. Press the bag without squishing the fruits to remove excess air.
- Seal the freezer bag tightly and label it with the freezing date. Next, push the bag into the freezer and let the segments freeze.
However, there are chances of the fruit segments sticking to each other. Though it is not challenging to tear them off, we have a solution that can prevent these segments from sticking together.
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. A silicone mat should also be sufficient because the fruits do not stick to it.
- Place the orange segments on the sheet in a straight line without touching each other.
- Push the sheet into the freezer for a couple of hours. Alternatively, you can place the sheet inside the freezer overnight. The orange segments should solidify the following morning.
- Transfer the frozen orange segments from the sheet to a freezer bag. Remove excess air as usual before sealing the bag.
- Stick the date label and freeze the oranges inside the freezer.
The orange segments should be perfect for smoothies after thawing.
How Long Can Oranges Remain Frozen Fresh In The Freezer?
Unpeeled oranges can remain fresh for three to six months in the freezer. Orange slices and segments can remain frozen in the freezer for ten to twelve months without compromising taste.
How Do You Defrost The Frozen Oranges?
Defrosting oranges is a straightforward process.
- The best method for defrosting the frozen oranges is the slow thawing process in the refrigerator. Transfer the frozen oranges from the freezer to the fridge and allow them to thaw overnight. The process is gradual but perfect for defrosting oranges.
- Alternatively, you can defrost the frozen oranges on the counter. This method is ideal for thawing the orange slices and segments. However, we do not recommend it for defrosting whole oranges. The process should take around 30 to 40 minutes. But, you must consume the oranges straight away.
- Suppose you wish to juice the oranges. You can directly blend the frozen segments by transferring them from the freezer to the blender without defrosting.
Can You Refreeze Oranges?
We do not recommend refreezing oranges because the fruit can become mushy and lose its texture.
Can You Freeze Orange Juice?
You can freeze orange juice and consume it later without compromising its taste.
Can You Freeze Orange Zest?
It is possible to freeze orange zest for three months.
Can You Freeze Orange Peels?
You can freeze orange peels and use them later in various recipes.
Can You Freeze The Orange Juice In A Carton?
It is possible to freeze orange juice in a carton. But, we recommend opening it and removing some fluid before freezing it. It provides space for the liquid to expand during freezing.
Can You Freeze Navel Oranges?
We do not recommend freezing navel oranges.
Oranges are ideal fruits to consume throughout the year. Besides being delicious, oranges are a vital source of Vitamin C. So, if you wish to preserve oranges, freezing them is an excellent option. We have discussed multiple ways of freezing oranges in this article.