Freezing peas is easy, and a great way to keep them on hand for adding to your favorite recipes all year round.
Whether you have an overabundance of peas from your garden, or you want to stock up from the grocery store or farmer’s market, freezing them is a convenient option.
Below I’ll show you exactly how to freeze fresh peas with or without blanching, with detailed step by step instructions.
Preparing Fresh Peas For Freezing
Before freezing fresh peas, it’s important to wash them to remove any dirt or debris. Whether you should remove them from the pod or leave them whole depends on the variety you have.
You can freeze snow or sugar snap varieties whole without shelling them. However, you should always remove English peas from their pods first.
To shell them, simply pop open the pod with your fingers. Then run a finger down the inside of the pod to remove them, as you guide them into a bowl.
Do You Have To Blanch Peas Before Freezing?
You don’t have to blanch peas before freezing them, but it is ideal. Blanching locks in the flavor, helps to retain the color and texture, and can help to extend their shelf life by a few months.
How To Blanch Peas To Freeze
Blanching peas is simple. All you need to do is flash-cook them in boiling water for 1 to 1 ½ minutes.
Then move them to an ice cold water bath immediately afterwards to stop the cooking process, and allow them to cool completely.
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Methods For Freezing Peas
There are a few methods you could use to freeze peas. The one you choose depends on the variety, how you plan to use them later, and the amount of time you have.
Freezing Peas In Their Pods
If you have snow or sugar snap, you can leave them whole because the pods are edible and have a softer structure to them.
Leaving them whole saves some time compared to shelling. These are great for tossing into stir frys and other recipes, and you don’t even have to thaw them first.
Freezing Shelled Peas
English peas require shelling before you can freeze them because their pods are tough and inedible.
While this is an extra step, it’s still very simple and doesn’t take much time once you get the hang of it. Plus it can actually be kind of relaxing.
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Flash Freezing Peas
Flash freezing is an optional step for both whole or shelled peas. But it will help to prevent them from sticking together in one large clump.
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Tools & Supplies Needed
Below is a list of the tools and equipment you’ll need. But, depending on the process you choose to use, you might not need everything.
- Quart freezer bags OR gallon freezer bags
- Permanent marker
- Kitchen towel OR paper towels
- Large slotted spoon (optional)
- Cooking pot (optional)
- Bowl of ice water (optional)
- Baking sheet (optional)
- Parchment paper (optional)
- Hands free baggie holder (optional)
How To Store Peas In The Freezer
The best way to store frozen peas is using zip-top freezer bags. Once you have filled them, gently press out any excess air before sealing them so they take up less space.
Then you can simply store them flat and stack them in your freezer. Instead of plastic baggies, you could use any type of airtight container you have.
How Long Do Frozen Peas Last?
Blanched frozen peas can last for up to a year in the freezer. If you choose to not blanch them they will only last for about 2-3 months. To extend the life, try using a food vacuum sealer.
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Here are some of the most common questions I get about freezing peas, along with my answers.
Can you freeze fresh peas without blanching?
You can freeze fresh peas without blanching them first. However, blanching locks in the flavor, color, and texture, and helps them last few months longer in the freezer.
Can you freeze peas in their pods?
Whether you can freeze peas in their pods or not depends on the type you have. You can freeze snow and sugar snap varieties whole, since the pods are edible. But it’s best to shell English peas to remove the tough, inedible pods before freezing them.
What is the best way to freeze fresh peas?
The best way to freeze fresh peas is to blanch them first, then spread them out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place them into the freezer for about 1 hour, or until they are firm, before filling your airtight baggies.
Can you freeze raw peas?
Yes you can freeze raw peas. But flash-cooking (aka blanching) them first will help them retain the best texture, flavor, and color, and make them last longer.
How long do you blanch peas before freezing?
Blanch (flash-cook) peas for 1-1 ½ minutes before freezing them. Remove them from the boiling water and immediately place them into a bowl of ice water to cool them and stop the cooking process.
How do I thaw frozen peas?
To thaw frozen peas, you can either leave them in the bag or place them in a strainer, then run cold water over them for a few minutes.
Can you freeze cooked peas?
I don’t recommend freezing cooked peas or they will become mushy once thawed, especially when you add them to a recipe.
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More About Food Preservation
- How To Freeze Cucumbers The Right Way
- How To Freeze Bok Choy The Easy Way
- How To Freeze Kohlrabi (With Or Without Blanching)
- Freezing Green Beans With Or Without Blanching
- Freezing Carrots With Or Without Blanching
- How To Freeze Rhubarb (With Or Without Blanching)
Share your tips for freezing peas in the comments section below.