I used to not be much of a frozen food person until I learned how nutritious and inexpensive this option can be (especially in the winter!). Frozen foods are usually picked and frozen at the peak of freshness, which can even beat out the fresh alternatives when they’re flown in from halfway across the world. So, little by little, I’ve found ways to use those little bags of frozen goodness, and today I’m excited to share how I’ve been doing just that! Plus I’m always looking for new ideas so be sure to share yours with me in the comments.
8 Ways I Use Frozen Produce
- Pomegranate Seeds Mixed into Yogurt (or oatmeal)
I have to credit my daughter for this one. She loves pomegranate seeds, but let’s face it – this isn’t the most convenient fruit to prepare so I’m often hesitant to buy one and presumably watch it sit on my counter and rot. Even if you buy just the seeds (fresh) they don’t last long. Then one day she was shopping with me and noticed you could buy the seeds frozen. This is now our new favorite, and they’re lovely mixed into yogurt (or oatmeal)!
- Berry Mix Added to Cereal
It’s no secret I love a bowl of homemade granola cereal to start my day! But it honestly isn’t complete without berries on top. I of course love fresh berries, but usually opt for frozen when they aren’t in season (i.e. available from my continent). They’re cheaper and – as I stated above – likely more nutritious purchased frozen in the winter. And, in case you didn’t know, it’s super easy to freeze your own so be sure to stock up when you hit the farmers’ market this summer!
- Blueberries or Raspberries Added to Muffin or Waffle Batter (no need to defrost!)
I almost never use fresh berries when I’m making muffins or waffles – almost seems like a waste! And since there’s really no need to defrost frozen produce before adding it to the batter, it doesn’t get much easier than that.
- Peaches and Pineapples in Smoothies (of course!)
Truth be told – you blink and peach season is basically over, and it’s pretty hard to find fresh organic peaches the rest of the year. Pineapple may be easier to come by, but then you have to do all that trimming and cutting. These are just some of the many reasons we almost always go for frozen produce when making smoothies at our house. Not to mention the outcome is refreshingly cold when you go frozen!
- Frozen Peas Added to Mac and Cheese (and it rhymes, too!)
Adding frozen peas to our mac and cheese has basically become routine at our house. This is usually what we give the kids for dinner when we have a babysitter coming over, and it has all sorts of benefits in my mind. It turns this dinner into a more well-rounded “one dish” meal (score for convenience) and also quickly cools off the pasta to the perfect temp.
- Veggie Mix for Stir Fry or Fried Rice
Frozen veggies are sold in all sorts of blends, and I’ve personally become fond of the “stir fry” type options out there. It’s hard to beat NOT having to wash and chop your veggies on a busy weeknight. And just like when I’m adding berries to my muffin or waffle batter, I don’t even take the time to defrost any of them first!
- Bananas for Banana “Ice Cream”
If you haven’t tried this “trick” yet you’re definitely missing out! The consistency of banana ice cream is almost identical to real ice cream, and it’s made by simply blending frozen bananas together with a little bit of milk. My kids absolutely LOVE this one for a fun treat! One tip though – be sure to take the peels off before putting your bananas in the freezer.
- Raspberries and/or Blueberries for a Colorful Cake Decoration
Move over artificially flavored/dyed sprinkles (and frosting)! We’ve got a better way to add color (and flavor) to birthday cakes. I recently added frozen raspberries on top of my daughter’s ice cream cake and it was devoured by all!
What are your best ideas for using frozen produce?
75 thoughts on “8 Ways I Use Frozen Produce”
I don’t like frozen veggies in stir-fry because freezing makes them mushy. Besides soup, I wish I could find more uses for mushy frozen veggies.
One thing that I recently discovered is to put frozen peas and carrots, etc. in a clean baby food jar to take on the road. It is the perfect healthy, on-the-go baby snack. And my baby LoVES then and kicks his legs for them. I thought they were quite tasty myself.
Frozen cherries and mango are easier to use in smoothies because you don’t have to pit or peel. I like frozen peas and baby lima beans to add to my homemade minestrone. Frozen pearl onions are great added to stew. I freeze cranberries & blueberries to add to muffins anytime of the year.
I heat up berries with the juice of 1/2 an orange until soft then let it cool, then refrigerate. I add the compote mixture to my yogurt.
Try heating frozen strawberries in a skillet until they become soft — homemade strawberry syrup! Sometimes we add stevia, but if the strawberries are sweet, it’s fine without. Fresh blueberries work well too, but frozen blueberries tend to be too watery.
Frozen broccoli and frozen spinach both make GREAT soups. “Green soup’ is a fall-winter staple in our house. Just saute onion, carrot, celery, add frozen green veggies and stock and salt or herbs to taste, and use the immersion blender once the veggies are tender. YUM!
I pour some frozen blueberries into a bowl and top with hot oatmeal and some pecans. The oatmeal defrosts the berries and it’s almost like dessert :)
We recently bought a flat of strawberries (local fundraiser) and I ended up freezing a lot. For Sunday breakfast this week, I made protein waffles (basically oatmeal, plain greek yogurt, eggs and vanilla) in my waffle maker and cooked the strawberries with a drizzle of honey and sprinkle of cinnamon and served them over the waffles. Yum!
Good article. I’m experiencing a few of these issues as well..
And another favorite way for my kids to eat frozen fruit is plain – let it thaw a few minutes and it’s a nice cold treat!
I add unsweetened cocoa powder to my frozen bananas and then blend. Makes chocolate “ice cream.” My kids love it!
I freeze raspberries and blackcurrants from the garden. I then use them for fruit crumbles with apples. Also cooked with a little sugar and blended into natural yogurt.
I had not seen frozen pomegranates before, so I was thrilled to find them in a store I don’t normally go to. Yay, frozen pomegranates in my freezer now, love those things!
Good ideas on this post.
Thanks for the healthy food ideas. I had heard about banana ice cream from a friend of mine. She has no blender and descibed banana ice cream as follows; peel all your bananas and put them in a bowl. Using a fork, mash the banas and a little milk. Add chunks of organic peanut butter and some organic honey. Place ingredients into a ziploc bag, and put in your freezer. Two hours later you have a tastey treat.
Thx again and p.s. – yours is the first blog i have ever read. Kinda cool and good for me. Andrew – almost 52
Thanks for the ideas, I use frozen berries for smoothies, and vegetables for soup puree, and you gave me more ideas, need to practice them!