Tips and Recommendations to Freeze Broccoli

22 October, 2020
Today's article will tell you about the best way to freeze broccoli in order to preserve it for as long as possible without affecting its quality. 

Brassicaceae, also known as Cruciferae is one of the healthiest vegetables in the world. This is because this group has a high content of fiber, antioxidants, and flavonoids that are essential to human health. Today we’d like to tell you about one of them – broccoli – and answer a common question: Can you freeze it?

Broccoli is equally loved and hated. That is, some find it tasty and others unappetizing. It contains essential nutrients for the human being, but its strong flavor isn’t for everyone. The ease of conservation is one of its qualities. Not to mention it being available most of the year in most grocery stores.

How long does fresh broccoli last?

You may not know it yet, but regular intake of broccoli is commonly associated with a lower risk of developing inflammation in the lungs. At least according to a study published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. The good news is you can buy it fresh and keep it in the fridge for a while.

In fact, you can refrigerate it for a period of 14 days if you store it raw. Its shelf life is reduced to 9 days if it’s cooked. In any case, the storage must be adequate, covered if possible.

A broccoli salad.
Broccoli has many health properties but not everyone finds it tasty.

Make this Baked Broccoli and Ham Casserole

How to properly preserve broccoli

To maximize the duration of this vegetable it’s important to exercise simple care when refrigerating it. Usually, most markets wrap cruciferous vegetables in plastic or film. We advise not removing it until you’re about to use it, otherwise you’ll reduce its useful life.

Similarly, store the excess broccoli in a container and cover it to limit its contact with the air if the package has already been opened. Then, put it back in the fridge so its flavonoids won’t oxidize.

This is because these nutrients are effective in the prevention of several complex pathologies. They’ve even been associated with the reduction of cellular damage due to aging, and, therefore, the slowing down of oncological development processes.

Can you freeze cooked broccoli?

As we mentioned above, you can definitely store cooked broccoli. To do so, store it in the fridge inside an airtight container. It should last about 9 days, although its organoleptic characteristics deteriorate as time goes by.

It’s for this reason that we recommend consuming it once you cook it within the following 2 or 3 days. Mainly because it’ll only retain its flavor during this period.

How to freeze broccoli?

Follow this procedure to properly blanch and store broccoli:

  • Firstly, remove the leaves that surround it
  • Then, fill a pot with water and add salt
  • Proceed to cut the vegetable in the portions you consider appropriate
  • Then, cook it for 3 minutes once the water reaches a boiling point
  • Don’t overcook it, otherwise, it’ll lose its nutrients and vitamins
  • Transfer the broccoli into a container with cold water to lower its temperature
  • Finally, store it in the freezer, either in airtight containers or in freezer bags

You don’t have to defrost the vegetable and can incorporate it directly into a pot with water or a frying pan to finish cooking it.

In addition, did you know that broccoli lasts from 9 months to 1 year in the freezer? After that its properties begin to dissipate, and it loses its flavor.

A bowl of vegetables.
Frozen broccoli can last up to a year.

Find out why Broccoli Is Amazing for Your Health in These 8 Ways

Freeze broccoli so it’s handy and you can easily include it in your diet

Cruciferae has many nutritional properties that are great for human health. Broccoli stands out from the rest and it’s for this reason that we encourage you to introduce it to your regular diet. There are many different ways to prepare it!

As we said above, you can freeze it even if it’s already cooked. Once you do, you can add it straight to your dishes without having to defrost it.

Finally, keep in mind that you can find fresh broccoli all year round at most grocery stores and can preserve it in the freezer for up to 12 months. As you can see, there’s no excuse not to eat it regularly as part of a well-balanced diet.

  • Sudini K., Diette GB., Breysse PN., McCormack MC., et al., A randomized controlled trial of the effect of broccoli sprouts on antioxidant gene expression and airway inflammation in asthmatics. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract, 2016. 4 (5): 932-40.
  • Vanduchova A., Anzenbacher P., Anzenbacherova E., Isothiocyanate from broccoli, sulforaphane, and its properties. J Med Food, 2019. 22 (2): 121-126.
  • Gonzalo, JC Rivas, and M. García Alonso. “Flavonoides en alimentos vegetales: estructura y actividad antioxidante.” Alimentación Nutrición y Salud 9.2 (2002): 31-38.