Spend less time freezing the season’s green beans and have a better texture after freezing by NOT blanching them first – really! This is a case where easier is actually better.
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I’m so glad you’re here! Easy recipes – including easy preserving recipes like this, are my favorites and this recipe for preserving green beans by freezing in a nontraditional way is the definition of easy. Find lots more do-able preserving recipes in our preserving recipe index, including how to freeze snap peas without blanching, an amazing Addictive Tomato Chutney, and our popular Easy Garlic Refrigerator Pickles.
Want to spend less time freezing the season’s green beans and have a better texture after freezing? Then follow these simple steps to freeze green beans – without blanching first.
Yes, I know everything you read says the “proper” way to freeze beans is to blanch first (immerse in boiling water for about 30 seconds, then plunge into an ice bath). Yes, I know there’s supposed to be an enzyme that will make the beans break down in the freezer if you store them without blanching.
However, I did a little test a few years ago. And I’d like to challenge you to do the same test and see what you think.
Our family used to eat canned green beans. That’s how I grew up and so I never liked the rubbery texture of frozen beans. When I started growing beans, I pickled and canned them and even learned to pressure can, just so I could can green beans. But then we had a child – a picky child – who decided she didn’t like canned green beans anymore, but who would eat them if they were frozen or fresh. Since beans were one of only three vegetables she would eat, guess who started freezing beans?
Except I still didn’t like that texture (or the weird squeaking sound they can make as you chew…). So I decided to do some research online and found mostly the recommendation to blanch, of course, but I also found two rebel souls on gardening forums who said they didn’t blanch their beans and they came out “perfect.”
What, really? I had to try it.
I chopped up the beans like I normally did, but then I put them directly into freezer bags.
Update: many people have asked about washing the beans first, so here’s my answer: I don’t. I garden organically and grow pole beans (here’s where I wax poetic about my favorite pole bean, Emerite) so the beans never touch the ground. I trust my cleanliness when picking them. If you are not sure of any of these things, you can choose to wash them – but you will need to dry them thoroughly before freezing to avoid crystals (you can use a trick I mention in this video to help dry them).
And then I used my straw “vacuum sealer” trick to remove as much air as I could from the baggie with a straw before sealing and freezing. I froze the bag for two weeks and then served them for dinner – which wasn’t easy when fresh beans were still available, that’s for sure.