Whether you are growing your own or found a great deal at the market, it’s easy to learn how to freeze raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and more! Save these simple tips for fresh berries all winter long.
If you love berries, don’t miss this blackberry and apple crumble! It has that classic homespun flavor and comes together quickly. These Blueberry Crumble Bars are a perfect treat for your summer BBQs!
There are so many reasons why someone would want to know how to freeze raspberries.
- You have some extra fruit from the farmers market you don’t want to waste (this is a great tip for a zero waste kitchen)!
- Your grocery store had a wild sale on berries and you stocked up.
- You harvest berries on a farm, at a u-pick, or your own garden and need an easy way to preserve the harvest.
However you ended up with these berries, learn everything you need to know about freezing raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and more!
Between strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and marionberries, I generally need to store berries in some way, shape, or form. When you work on a berry farm, you need to know how to freeze berries!
Different Ways to Preserve Excess Berries
- Canning – I do love to can and make jams, like this golden raspberry jam. Canning is hot and after a long day of harvesting, I generally do not want to stand over a boiling pot for a long time.
- Dehydrating – I don’t have a dehydrator, but you can certainly dry berries for natural fruit candy. Lots of folks like to make fruit leather, too!
- Freezing – Personally, I prefer to freeze berries because it is an excellent way to store berries long-term, stores the frozen raspberries perfectly for however long I need, and doesn’t require a water bath canner, jars, lids, etc.
Can you freeze raspberries?
Absolutely! You can very easily freeze fresh raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, cranberries, and more! It is so easy and you’ll have plenty of berries for later!
You’ll need a strainer, some kitchen towels, a baking tray, parchment paper or wax paper, and freezer bags.
Fresh raspberries – This technique works for any type of fresh raspberry or other berries. The fresher, the better.
How to Freeze Raspberries
- Rinse your fresh berries under cold water in a strainer. Gently shake to remove excess water.
- Place raspberries out on clean kitchen towels on your kitchen counter until they are fully dry. Turn partway through to remove excess moisture.
- Put a piece of parchment paper on a half sheet tray and pour the berries into a single layer on the pan.
- Place the entire tray in the freezer and freeze until completely frozen (a few hours or just leave overnight).
- Pour into your favorite freezer-safe containers and return to freezer for freezer storage.
Thawing & Using
- Thaw overnight – Place the berries you want to use in a small bowl in the fridge overnight. This will soften them up and make them easy to use.
- Add to smoothies – Add your frozen berries directly to the blender for a delicious smoothie any time of the year.
- Bake from frozen – Baking with frozen berries will likely require you to add 10-15 minutes to your bake time.
Tips & Variations
- Sheet trays are a must! If you don’t already have half sheet trays in your house, I highly recommend that you get some! I use them for everything and they are the perfect size for standard ovens and last forever. Use parchment paper or silicone tray liners for zero waste baking.
- Fold the parchment paper to make a funnel – This will make it easy to add the frozen berries to your bag.
- The right-sized pan – One half sheet pan can generally fit one half-flat of berry boxes, or 6 half-pint cups, with space for the berries to freeze well.
- Zero-waste berry freezing – Use a silpat mat or silicone baking sheet to avoid parchment paper. Store your berries in mason jars or silicone bags.
- Use imperfect or seconds berries – It’s a great way to preserve imperfect berries because the freezer will kill off any bugs. Only freeze slightly overripe berries for making sauces or crumbles.
Eco Friendly Ways to Store Frozen Berries
If you’re trying to move away from ziploc bags, you still have plenty of options to store these berries without waste.
- Mason jars – Add your frozen berries to the jar and place it in the freezer.
- Reuse plastic clamshells – Put the whole clamshell in the freezer and your berries will freeze perfectly. Eat them within a month or move them to a closed container to avoid absorbing freezer smells.
- Freeze in cardboard boxes – On the farm, we harvest berries into half pint cups in cardboard boxes. My farmer friend says she puts the entire cardboard box of berry cups in the freezer and they froze great that way, too!
How long can you freeze raspberries?
The answer to this question depends on your storage container.
- Gallon freezer bag ~ 1 year – In a gallon freezer bag, I tend to find berries store well for about a year. Around that point, I start to notice ice crystals forming inside the bags.
- Mason jars & plastic tubs ~ 1 year – Although I have not tried this solution for freezing berries, I anticipate they’d last around the same amount of time as the gallon bags. The mason jars should last a little longer as they lock the air out. Plastic tubs are not sealed in the same way and will likely start to get ice crystals sooner.
- Vacuum seal bags ~ 2-3 years – For longer storage, use vacuum seal bags. If you use vacuum bags, freeze the berries first or they will be crushed. Notice how these marionberries from last year show no sign of ice crystals forming in the bag. Recently, I used a bag of vacuum-sealed blackberries from over 5 years ago! They were still delicious and made a wonderful blackberry and apple crumble.
- Reusable silicone bags ~ 1-2 years – Although we haven’t tried this method yet, we will for this year’s harvest. These thick bags are great at keeping foods fresh in the freezer and should last a long time.
How long can you freeze berries?
Here’s the thing: you can freeze most berries for years. The only issue is the freezer burn and taste.
I’ve frozen so many different types of fruits usually in plastic gallon bags. They store for about a year in those before they get ice crystals forming from freezer burn. But, I’ve gone back and used up those old bags of frozen fruits even 5-6 years later. Yes, they have a slight freezer taste, but they were totally fine for baking!
They might not be ideal for fresh eating, but they are just fine for making a berry crisp or whipping up a jar of jam.
Do you need to wash raspberries before freezing?
Technically, you should wash your fruit before freezing. Without even considering germs, there’s dust, pollen, and other things on berries just from growing outside.
However, if you wash berries before freezing, they will generally just stick to the parchment paper instead of rolling off smoothly unless you allow them to dry all the way. This is easy for freezing blueberries, but can take a little longer for blackberries and raspberries.
If you want to wash your berries before freezing, lay them out on kitchen towels to dry before putting them on the freezer tray. This will reduce how much they stick to each other and the parchment paper.
Can you freeze golden raspberries?
If you are lucky enough to have excess golden raspberries, they can store well in the freezer or make a batch of Golden Raspberry Jam!
Can you freeze black raspberries?
Absolutely! All berries can be frozen using the strategies above. You can also freeze huckleberry, thimbleberry, salmon berry, dew berry, and more.
Do I need to thaw raspberries before baking?
You can typically bake with raspberries even when they’re totally frozen! The same goes for baking with frozen cranberries. We’ve also baked with frozen blueberries and had success.
Other berries, like blackberries and strawberries, should be thawed before using. Simply place your container in a bowl or dish in the fridge. Allow to thaw completely. Drain the fruit from the juice for your recipe.
Feel freeze to save the juice for something else. We like to mix powdered sugar into the extra juice to make a berry glaze to put on top of our breads, cakes, and bars.
There are so many ways to use these delicate berries! Here are some of my favorite uses:
- Raspberry sauce to pour over pancakes or ice cream
- Whip up a batch of raspberry muffins
- Turn these into a delicious raspberry ganache
- Bake a raspberry coffee cake
- Make a tray of raspberry oatmeal bars
- Bake my favorite white chocolate raspberry cookies
- Mix up some raspberry white chocolate blondies
How to Freeze Blackberries, Strawberries, and More
This technique also works great for other fresh fruit like cherries, apricots, plums, and even peaches!
- Berries without pits or stems (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, currants, etc): freeze directly on sheet tray
- Strawberries: remove stems before freezing for easier use
- Cherries: pit and freeze whole
- Medium-sized stone fruits (apricots, plums, etc.): pit and slice in half. Freeze with the cut side up for easy removal
- Large stone fruits (peaches, nectarines): pit, and slice at least in half, if not more
You can even use this tip for other fruits like pineapple! I had a pineapple ripening too quickly recently so I cut it into small pieces, frozen them on a tray, and had a bag of frozen pineapple for whenever I wanted. It was perfect for making water kefir!
Use this same technique to freeze excess cherry tomatoes, too!
Canning made easy
If you’re dreaming of a pantry with jars of homemade sauces, pickles, and jams, you’ll want my Canning Bundle! Get organized & start canning today!
Like I said, this is an incredibly easy process! Now that you know how to freeze berries, I hope you freeze a bag or two!
How to Freeze Raspberries
- 1 Half sheet tray
- 1 tray liner (parchment paper or silicone mat)
- 1 towel (for drying your berries)
- 1 freezer bag (see post for a variety of storage containers)
- 1 flat fresh raspberries (you can freeze any amount & type of berries)
- Rinse berries and allow to dry fully on kitchen towels.
- Place clean berries on a sheet tray lined with parchment paper. Allow to freeze until solid (several hours to overnight).
- Lift up the edges of the parchment paper or liner to funnel your berries directly into your freezer bags or other containers.
- Store in the freezer for approximately one year.
Have you tried freezing raspberries?
What’s your favorite berry? Do you freeze berries or eat them fresh? How do you store them? Tell us below!
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Pinning this for later! Thanks for the tutorial. We have new blueberry bushes this year, and I’m hoping they’ll produce enough to freeze some in the next year or 2!
Oh, that sounds so fun! We bought new ones this year and our friendly neighborhood birds devoured them. We’ll cover them next year, but then I’m hoping we both get a nice harvest! Thanks so much for your visit. 🙂
Such a helpful post! Thank you for linking up at Embracing Home and Family!
This is great advice! In June we picked 17 pounds of strawberries from a local patch. In July, I brought home 40 pounds of Georgia Peaches from a farm stand, and recently, 10 pounds of Michigan Blueberries. I have them all nicely tucked away in our deep-freeze now, and love being able to pull them out all year long for smoothies, desserts, cocktails and more!
Thanks for sharing at my new Sundays on Silverado Link Party, Rachael!
-Niky @ The House on Silverado
Amazing! You’re a powerhouse! Honestly, I don’t think I could handle preserving so much food if it wasn’t for the freezer. And I love that you’ll be able to pull out that produce in the winter and still bake cobblers or make jams, etc! The deep freezer is THE BEST. Thanks so much for visiting! Glad to have you, Niky!
Such fabulous tips! I never thought about keeping the clam shell to freeze in. I just wish my strawberries had come on this year but they were so wimpy! Next year for sure! I would love to have you come and link up to Centerpiece Wednesday Linky Party and share this post! https://karinskottage.com/2020/08/its-time-to-link-up-to-centerpiece-wednesday.html
Hi, Karin! Thanks for your message! I hadn’t heard about your party until now and just shuffled over to join. Added you to my linky party page so I can be sure to join weekly. Good luck with those strawberries! Crossing my fingers for next year!
I have never tried to freeze berries because I didn’t know how to do it. Thanks for sharing a great tutorial with us this week. #HomeMattersParty
Thanks so much, Donna! Glad this was useful. I found lots of great new blogs at the party so thank you for hosting!
Thank you so much for sharing!