What is more Canadian than saskatoon berries?
If you don’t know, they are a type of berry that is native to the Prairies and is related to the blueberry.
They are often used in pies, jams, and syrups, and can be eaten fresh off the bush.
If you have never had them before, you are in for a treat!
And if you are lucky enough to live in an area where they grow, you might be wondering if you can freeze them so you can enjoy them all year round.
The short answer is yes, you can freeze saskatoon berries!
In this post, we will give you all the tips and tricks you need to know about freezing saskatoon berries so you can enjoy them long after the season is over.
Can You Freeze Saskatoon Berries?
Yes, you can freeze saskatoon berries. First, wash the berries and remove any stems. Next, spread the berries out on a baking sheet and place them in the freezer. Once frozen, transfer the berries to an airtight container or freezer bag.
How to Freeze Saskatoon Berries
To get the best results, we recommend using the ‘open freeze’ method for freezing saskatoon berries. This will help to retain the original flavour and appearance of the berries.
Here are some step-by-step instructions that you can follow to freeze your saskatoon berries easily:
- Spread Berries Out on Trays: Grab a couple of baking trays and line them with parchment paper (or just use non-stick trays). Then, spread out your fresh saskatoon berries over the tray.
- Ensure They’re Spaced Out: Ensure the berries are spaced out well, so they do not touch each other. This will ensure that the berries are individually frozen instead of a single lump if you directly freeze them in a bag.
- Flash Freeze: Put these trays in the freezer for a couple of hours. The recommended time is anywhere from 2-3 hours. Try to keep them as flat as possible.
- Bag Up: Once you feel the covering of the berries is hardened, remove them from the freezer. Then shake the berries into a plastic container or a Ziploc bag.
- Seal and Freeze: Don’t forget to seal the bag or the container tightly. Then just pop the saskatoonberries back in the freezer until you want to use them.
Always remember, the fresher saskatoonberries you freeze, the longer they will last.
This will make sure that you can retain the nutrients and freshness of the berries for a longer period.
4 Tips for Freezing Saskatoon Berries
We all want our saskatoon berries to last as long as possible and freezing them is a great way to do so!
Here are our top tips for freezing saskatoon berries:
1. Pick Them at Their Peak
This one seems like a no-brainer, but it’s worth mentioning!
Saskatoon berries are at their peak ripeness when they’re a deep purple colour and they should be soft to the touch but not squishy.
Picking them at their peak ensures that they’ll taste great even after being frozen.
2. Rinse and Dry Them Thoroughly
When you get your saskatoon berries home from picking (or buying), rinse them off with cold water to get rid of any dirt or debris.
Then, set them out on a clean towel and pat them dry.
It’s important to make sure they’re completely dry before freezing them so that they don’t get freezer burn.
3. Freeze Them in a Single Layer
Once your saskatoon berries are dry, spread them out in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and pop them in the freezer.
Once they’re frozen, you can transfer them to an airtight container or freezer bag.
This method of freezing ensures that the berries don’t stick together and makes it easy to grab just a few at a time if you need them.
4. Use Them Within 6 Months
Frozen saskatoon berries will taste best if used within 6 months, but they’ll still be safe to eat after that.
How Long Can You Freeze Saskatoon Berries?
Assuming you have picked or purchased fresh Saskatoon berries, you can pop them in the freezer as is.
Just make sure to wash them first so they are clean and free of any debris.
Once washed, simply spread them out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and place them in the freezer.
After about an hour or so, the berries will be frozen and you can then transfer them to a freezer-safe container or bag.
Label the container or bag with the date so you know how long they have been in the freezer.
Frozen Saskatoon berries will last for up to 6 months.
How Do You Defrost Saskatoon Berries?
Once you’ve decided to use your frozen saskatoons, there are three recommended methods for thawing:
- The first, and quickest, method is to simply place them in a colander and run cool water over them until they’re no longer frozen.
- If you have more time, you can place the berries in a single layer on a baking sheet and let them sit at room temperature until they’ve thawed.
- For an even slower thaw, place the berries in a zip-top bag and submerge them in a bowl of cool water. Change the water as it warms until the berries have thawed.
Can You Refreeze Saskatoon Berries?
Generally, you can refreeze fruits and vegetables that have been cooked or thawed as long as they were kept cold prior to freezing.
This helps to preserve their color, texture, and flavor.
However, if you are planning on refreezing them, it is best to do so within a few months of initially freezing them.
When thawing and refreezing Saskatoon berries, make sure to do so in a container that will prevent them from getting too mushy.
How to Tell if Frozen Saskatoon Berries Are Bad?
Nobody wants to eat bad berries, least of all when they’ve been painstakingly gathered and frozen for later.
Here are some tips on how to tell if your frozen saskatoon berries are bad:
- Color change. If the berries have changed color from a deep blue to a light purple or red, they have most likely gone bad.
- Berry texture. Another way to tell if berries are bad is by their texture. If the berries are mushy or have black spots, throw them out.
- Mold growth. If you see any mold growing on the berries, it’s best to get rid of them. Even if there is only a small amount of mold present, the rest of the berries may be contaminated.
- Off-odor. If the berries smell sour or otherwise off, don’t eat them.
- Age. Finally, if you’ve had the berries for longer than six months (even in the freezer), it’s probably time to let them go.
How to Make Frozen Saskatoon Berries Taste Better?
Now, if you’re anything like me, then you love saskatoon berries.
But if you’re also anything like me, then you know that sometimes they can taste a little… bland.
Here are five ways to make your frozen saskatoon berries taste better:
- Add a squeeze of lemon juice
- Mix in some chopped fresh mint
- Stir in a tablespoon or two of honey
- Add a splash of balsamic vinegar
- Toss with some toasted almond slices
How To Freeze Saskatoon Berries (With Tips)
- Spread Berries Out on Trays
- Ensure They’re Spaced Out
- Flash Freeze
- Bag Up
- Seal and Freeze