Do you freeze fresh basil leaves before using them in recipes?
If so, then you might want to think twice!
Fresh basil leaves are a delicious addition to salads, pasta dishes, soups, pesto, and other Italian dishes.
However, freezing basil leaves can cause them to become bitter.
I’m going to explain you how to freeze fresh basil leaves without losing their flavor.
Various Ways to Freeze Basil
You can freeze basil leaves in ice cube trays and then transfer them into freezer bags. This way you can store your basil leaves for months. Another option is to freeze basil leaves in a single layer on a baking sheet. Once frozen, place the basil sheets into a zipper bag and store them in the freezer. You can also freeze basil leaves in a glass jar. Put the basil leaves into the jar and fill it with water. Cover the top tightly and put the jar in the refrigerator. After 24 hours, remove the basil leaves from the jar and dry them thoroughly. Place the dried basil leaves into a zip-top bag and store them in a cool, dark location.
Freezing Whole Basil Leaves (with blanching)
To freeze whole basil leaves, simply wash them well and pat them dry. Then, cut off the stems and chop the leaves finely. Transfer the chopped basil leaves into a bowl and pour enough vegetable broth over them until they are covered. Let the basil sit for about 10 minutes, then drain the liquid. Add the basil leaves back into the bowl and pack them into ice cube trays. Once frozen, transfer the basil cubes into a freezer bag and label them accordingly.
Freezing Whole Basil Leaves (without blanching)
To freeze whole basil leaves, wash them well and pat dry. Cut off the stems and chop them finely. Transfer the chopped leaves into a bowl and cover them with enough vegetable broth until they are covered. Leave the basil leaves sitting for about 10 minutes, drain the liquid and place the basil leaves back into a bowl. Pack the basil leaves into ice cube trays and freeze them. Once frozen, transfer them into a freezer bag and write down what type of basil you used.
Freezing Chopped Basil in Ice Cubes Tray
Wash the basil leaves and pat them dry. Chop the leaves finely. Place the chopped basil leaves into a bowl and pour enough vegetable broth until they’re covered. Cover the bowl and leave the basil leaves sitting for 10 minutes. Drain the liquid from the basil leaves and place them back into the bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour the basil leaves into ice cubes tray and freeze them. Once they’re frozen, transfer them into freezer bags and write down what type you used.
Freezing Basil Puree
Wash the basil leaves and pat dry. Remove the stems and chop the leaves finely. Put the chopped basil leaves into the blender and blend them together. Pour the blended basil leaves into a bowl. Add enough vegetable broth until they are covered. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the basil leaves sit for 10 minutes. Drain off the liquid from the basil and put them back into the bowl again. Add salt and pepper. Pour the basil leaves back into the blender and blend again. Pour the basil puree into a bowl and freeze it. Once it’s frozen, transfer it into freezer bags and write what type you used.
Thawing and Using Frozen Basil
To thaw frozen basil, place the bag in the refrigerator overnight. To use the basil, remove the bag from the fridge and take the basil out of the bag. Place the basil into a bowl and pour hot water over it. Let the basil sit for about 5 minutes. Then drain the basil and use it immediately.
How Long Can You Freeze Basil?
You can freeze basil for up to 3 months. To store basil, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and put it into a freezer bag. Make sure to label the bag and write down what type of basil it is.
Is it better to freeze or dry basil?
To freeze fresh basil, place the bunch of basil in a zip-top freezer bag. Squeeze out any excess air from the bag, seal it, and lay it flat in a freezer bag. Place the whole thing in the freezer. After two hours, remove the basil from the freezer and move it to a zipper-lock bag. Store the bag in the freezer until ready to use.
Can I freeze fresh basil without blanching?
You can freeze fresh basil leaves in a sealed plastic freezer bag. Just take a handful of leaves, put them into a resealable plastic bag, and squeeze out as much air as possible. Seal the bag and lay it flat in the freezer. After about 2 hours, transfer the bag to a zipper-lock freezer bag. This way, the leaves won’t stick together. Once frozen, store the bags in the freezer until needed.
How do you freeze fresh basil leaves?
Yes, but not if you want to preserve the bright green color. Blanching basil stops enzymatic activity, which turns the leaves dark. To avoid this, place the basil in a bowl, fill with cold water, and swish around to remove any dirt. Remove the leaves from the water, drain well, and pat dry. Freeze the leaves in a sealed plastic bag.
Is it better to dehydrate or freeze basil?
To prevent basil from turning black, simply blanch it briefly in boiling water. This process preserves the color of the leaves while killing off bacteria. After blanching, immediately plunge the basil into ice water to stop the cooking process. Drain well and pat dry. Place the basil in a freezer bag and freeze until ready to use.
What is the best way to freeze basil?
Basil is very easy to freeze. Simply wash the leaves, remove any stems or tough parts, place them in a single layer on trays lined with parchment paper, spread them evenly, and let them dry overnight. Then store them in an airtight container.
What is the best way to freeze basil leaves?
Freezing is the best way to preserve herbs. It keeps them fresh for long periods of time. Dehydration is another good way to preserve herbs. Just follow these steps: Wash the herbs thoroughly Remove any stems or tough parts Place the washed herbs in a single layer on a tray lined with parchment paper Spread the herbs evenly and let them dry overnight Store the herbs in an airtight container
How do you freeze basil without turning it black?
Dried herbs are generally preferred because they retain their flavor longer than frozen herbs. However, freezing can preserve herbs for months if you store them properly. Freezing basil leaves can be done either by placing the leaves into freezer bags or by putting them directly into a freezer bag. To prevent the leaves from sticking together, place a piece of parchment paper between each layer of leaves. Once the leaves are frozen, transfer them to a resealable plastic bag and store them in the freezer until needed. Drying herbs is another option. Simply spread the leaves out on a baking sheet and allow them to air dry. This method takes about 24 hours. Once dried, remove the herbs from the baking sheet and store them in an airtight container.