Artichoke hearts are savoury, nutritious, and a household favourite for most. They are perfect for casseroles, salads, dips, and more. However, they are a seasonal vegetable so can’t be enjoyed all year long and, let’s be honest, a bit of a faff to prepare. That is unless you freeze them…
Can You Freeze Artichoke Hearts?
Yes, you can freeze artichoke hearts for up to 7 months. You must blanch artichokes before freezing to lock in their colour, flavour and nutrients.
Do Artichokes Freeze Well? Yes
Can You Refreeze Artichoke Hearts? No
How To Freeze Artichoke Hearts
The first step to freezing artichoke hearts properly is selecting the right artichokes. If your artichokes aren’t fresh when they go into the freezer, they’ll likely lose their taste and firmness quicker.
Pick artichokes which are green in colour all around, with tight leaves and a taut shape.
Unlike most other veggies or fruits, artichoke hearts cannot be frozen in raw form. If you freeze them without cooking or preparing them, they will visibly lose their colour and nutrition rapidly.
That is why we recommend the following approach for freezing artichoke hearts:
- Prep Artichokes: If you aren’t using canned or prepared artichokes, you need to prep them by removing the leaves on the outside and scooping out the choke from the centre leaving you with a delicious artichoke heart.
- Rinse: We suggest you rinse the artichokes in cold water after trimming them. Make sure to drain them well once finished soaking.
- Blanch: Create a blanching mix by filling a pot with water and adding the juice from half a lemon. For small artichokes, blanch for 3 minutes. For medium artichokes, blanch for 5 minutes. Make sure you cut off the stems and trim 1 inch off the top for larger artichokes.
- Cool: Remove the blanched artichokes and place them directly into cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain and dry them thoroughly using a towel.
- Flash Freeze: Place the artichoke hearts onto a baking tray and into the freezer for around 2 hours to flash freeze.
- Final Freeze: After artichokes are fully frozen, you can store them in separate containers or bags in the freezer. Separately placing in plastic bags is convenient because, having flash-frozen them, you can grab as many as you need at a time.
If you have steamed artichokes, these can also be cooked and frozen in foil and plastic bags. These can be frozen whole, but go for freezer-grade plastic bags, durable aluminium foil, or glass and plastic containers.
The packaging you use for freezing should be suitable if you want your artichokes to freeze well. Use freezer containers that keep vapour and moisture out. Additionally, containers should not be susceptible to damage at cold temperatures.
We recommend air-tight containers that prevent foods from absorbing external odours and flavours.
How to Freeze Marinated Artichoke Hearts
You can buy marinated artichoke hearts at the supermarket or marinate them yourself at home. The best part about marinated artichoke hearts isn’t their pickled flavour but their preservative capacity!
Thanks to the marinades used, these artichoke hearts can last up to 2 months in the fridge. If frozen, they will stay fresh for up to a year! To keep them brined, your marinade should include ingredients like lemon juice, oil, and salt.
If the marinated jar isn’t opened, then it will last even longer, which begs the question: Is there any point in freezing marinated artichokes?
3 Tips for Freezing Artichoke Hearts
Now you know how to freeze them, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing artichoke hearts to have the best results:
There is no point in freezing whole artichokes. A lot of an artichoke is inedible so freezing it in this way will make it harder to use in future and will also take up unnecessary room in the freezer.
Blanching is vital when it comes to freezing artichokes. By blanching them beforehand, you ensure there are no dramatic changes to the texture, flavour, colour or taste.
Flashing freezing artichokes makes it far easier to grab one or two hearts at a time. It will prevent them from sticking to one another.
How Long Can You Freeze Artichoke Hearts?
If you prep and blanch your artichoke hearts properly, they can last between 6 and 8 months.
Remember, it’s vital that you label your containers with the contents and when they need to be used to avoid wasting your artichokes further in the future.
When kept in an airtight container, artichoke hearts will keep for around 1 week in the fridge, uncooked. Once cooked, they will last for around 5 days.
How Do You Defrost Artichoke Hearts?
Defrosting artichoke hearts requires you to tightly cover them in aluminium foil after removal from the freezer.
The covered artichokes should then be placed over steaming water. This will thaw them out for you to cook as you please.
We suggest you cook artichokes for 25 more minutes for the best results. You can also steam the hearts thoroughly by covering the artichoke.
Can You Refreeze Artichoke Hearts?
Refreezing is a bit tricky with artichoke hearts. Since they tend to change appearance and consistency after freezing and cooking, refreezing might not give you the desired results.
Artichoke dips and other recipes freeze much better, and you won’t have to worry about a loss of flavour.
Do Artichoke Hearts Freeze Well?
Artichokes can be frozen for functional purposes but are best consumed fresh. How well they freeze will depend on how you wish to use them later.
Marinated artichokes freeze better and retain more flavour. On the other hand, canned or water-packed artichoke hearts have a blander flavour, and their firmness is compromised.
Frozen artichokes will also be a bit mushier than their original form, and lose out on appearance. This means they freeze well if you plan to use them in pureed form.
Ideally, you can use them for dips and recipes that don’t require whole artichoke hearts.
Lastly, the length of storage will also make them more or less firm and nourishing. Either way, artichoke lovers can still enjoy some great recipes that make use of preserved artichoke hearts.
Since they last for close to 8 months, you can get by on frozen artichokes until spring comes around again!
If you’ve still got questions about freezing artichoke hearts or artichokes in general, then these may help:
Stuffed artichokes can be frozen, but it’s essential to consider what they have been loaded with and whether those ingredients freeze well. You can wrap stuffed artichokes in cling film multiple times before placing in the freezer.
Yes, you can freeze cooked artichokes for around 3 months. Bear in mind that when you thaw and reheat them, chances are you’ll under up overcooking them slightly which can ruin the texture.
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