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Can You Freeze Yams?

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By Ross Young

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Unfortunately, yams aren’t widely available all year round. This is why they’re much loved around Thanksgiving and Christmas time when they’re fresh out of the garden and bursting with flavour. So, if you’ve got your hands on a batch of yams, what’s the best way to preserve them?

Can You Freeze Yams?

Yes, you can freeze yams for up to 6 months. You can either parboil them or cook them before freezing; it’s up to you. Just make sure they’re tightly wrapped and protected from freezer burn before you place them in the freezer.

Do Yams Freeze Well? Yes

Can You Refreeze Yams? No

How to Freeze Yams

Yams are a delicious carbohydrate that really comes to the fore around Christmas time. Just like potatoes, they can be enjoyed in lots of different ways.

But to ensure you have a supply of delicious yams throughout the year, you can freeze them by following the simple steps listed below: 

  1. Parboil
    Peel and prepare your yams as you ordinarily would, and parboil them for around ten minutes. This is an important step as it will keep your yams taste and texture intact in the freezer. Your yams should be tender and not cooked entirely at this stage.
  2. Cool
    Leave your yams sitting at room temperature for at least an hour until they have cooled completely. You should never put warm yams in the freezer for obvious reasons! 
  3. Slice
    Once your yams have cooled, slice or dice them and add them to suitably sized freezer-safe bags. You should be mindful of how you plan to use your yams in the future and split them into appropriate portion sizes. 
  4. Label and Freeze
    Once you’ve added your yams to a freezer-safe bag, press as much air out as possible before sealing it. Then, write today’s date and the use-by date on the front of the bag and place your yams in the freezer.

3 Tips for Freezing Yams

Now you know how to freeze them, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing yams to have the best results:

Reheat From Frozen
When it’s time to reheat your yams, you can reheat them from frozen. Because you’ve already parboiled them, you don’t need to reheat them for as long as you ordinarily would. You can boil, fry, or even grill frozen yams, depending on the recipe that you’re following.

Freeze Just Once
You should only ever freeze yams once, as they won’t respond well to refreezing. This is because the ice crystals that form during the freezing process can cause yams to soften and take on additional moisture.

More often than not, this results in soggy yams that are far from appetising and won’t be suitable for use in your chosen recipe!

Freeze Sweet Potatoes too!
Depending on where in the world you live, yams and sweet potatoes are pretty much the same thing and are often confused with one another. So, if you live in a country where they’re called sweet potatoes, you can freeze this delicious veggie by following the steps listed above!

How Long Can You Freeze Yams?

You can freeze yams for around six months. We wouldn’t recommend keeping them in the freezer for any longer than this, as you may find that their taste and texture will begin to change.

Yams typically last for several weeks at room temperature or in the fridge before they start to turn, so make sure you check their condition before you set about freezing them.

After all, you don’t want to freeze yams that have started to go bad!

You Can Freeze Yams for up to 6 Months

How Do You Defrost Yams?

As mentioned, you don’t need to defrost yams before reheating them, and you can cook them in various ways to save you time and effort in the kitchen.

However, if you want to thaw them before cooking them in the future, transfer them from the freezer to the fridge and leave them in their packaging.

They will take several hours to thaw, so it’s best to do this the night before you plan to reheat them.

Can You Refreeze Yams?

No, you should only freeze yams once. This is due to the ice crystals that form during the freezing process.

Yams have a potato-like consistency, and the crystals can cause yams to soften and even go soggy if you freeze and thaw them more than once. As such, to ensure your yams taste as delicious as you would have hoped, you should only freeze them once.

Do Yams Freeze Well?

Overall, yams freeze reasonably well. You need to make sure that you parboil and package them correctly, or they will suffer from freezer burn and may even go soggy if you’re not careful.

But that being said, freezing yams is a great way to preserve them throughout the year when they’re not widely available.

If you’ve still got questions about freezing yams or yams in general, then these may help:

Can You Freeze Yams Without Blanching?

We would recommend blanching them all the time as this will prevent them from going mushy when frozen and then cooked.

Do You Need to Peel Yams to Freeze Them?

No, you do not need to peel yams when freezing them. You just need to consider how you use them. If you normally peel them, then peel them before freezing, for example.

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