Cabbage is both delicious and nutritious. You can use it in many different dishes, and it is very affordable.
It is a great idea to stockpile cabbage, but it cannot be easy to keep it fresh in the refrigerator.
You can freeze cabbage, but you need to cook it first.
Because cabbage is a leafy vegetable and has fibrous membranes and high water contents, it will not thrive if frozen raw.
You can make mushy, soggy cabbage by freezing it raw and then thawing it.
The cabbage will retain its flavor and texture even if it is cooked before it is frozen.
You can blanch the cabbage beforehand if you don’t want to cook it completely before freezing.
This will make it more resistant to cold temperatures.
Which Types of Cabbage that You Can Freeze
It is important to choose the right type of cabbage to freeze. This will impact the quality and taste.
For freezing, make sure you buy fresh cabbages. These should have dense, solid heads and green leaves.
Avoid freezing cabbages with yellowed or wilted foliage. Also, make sure you check the expiration date on the packaging.
Most cabbages can be picked at their peak freshness and stored in a warehouse before being transported.
You can buy the cabbage at a local farmer’s market if you want to ensure it is fresh.
If you have cabbages in your garden, pick them in the morning to avoid overheating.
To ensure maximum freshness, wait until the frost is almost over before you harvest cabbages from your garden.
Some common types of cabbage that you can freeze include white cabbage, savoy cabbage, and red cabbage.
1 – White Cabbage.
White cabbage is the type that appears in most grocery stores. When eaten raw, it has a slightly sweet flavor to it.
It is good for many dishes like slaws and stir-fries.
You can use it as a garnish or as an accompaniment to cooked dishes.
When you slice white cabbage thinly, it has a crunchy texture. The flavor is mild and mellow.
White cabbages are quite affordable, so you can enjoy the benefits of freezing them for later use.
2 – Savoy Cabbage.
Savoy cabbage has crinkled leaves with blue-green veins. The leaves are tender and flavorful.
When eaten raw, it has a slightly sweet flavor to it that is very appealing.
Savoy cabbage can be kept for long periods without wilting or losing its crispness.
The flavor develops when the vegetable is cooked, so you can just cook it briefly if you want to add this vegetable to your home-cooked meals.
This will also ensure that it is not soggy after you freeze and later thaw it.
3 – Red Cabbage.
While red cabbages are mostly eaten cooked, they can be frozen raw as well.
The leaves are highly colored with a bold crimson hue. Red cabbages have a rich flavor, and their leaves are crunchy.
When you blanch the red cabbage, make sure you immerse it in boiling water for no more than 30 seconds before draining and placing on kitchen towels to dry.
This will ensure that it doesn’t taste soggy after freezing and thawing.
How to Prepare Cabbage for Freezing
There are a variety of methods you can use to prepare cabbage for freezing.
You can choose the one that will work best with your schedule or the method that yields the texture you like most.
1 – Choose a Type of Cabbage and Cut It into Slice or Shreds.
Choose the type of cabbage you want to freeze.
You can cut it into thick slices if you want to stir-fry or steam it after thawing.
Alternatively, you can shred the cabbage if you plan on making coleslaw after thawing.
To cut a cabbage, first, remove the outer leaves of the head. Then, cut off the stem too for easier handling.
Now you can cut across the head to make thick slices or shred it if you want to prepare coleslaw after thawing.
You can also shred it using a food processor if you just want to skip this step when freezing the cabbage.
2 – Cook the Cabbage.
You can cook the cabbage using a variety of freezing methods.
For instance, you can blanch it or just steam it and then let it cool before placing it in storage bags to freeze.
With this method, reheating the frozen cabbage will be faster and easier since most of the preparation work has been done.
3 – Freeze It Raw.
You can also freeze the cabbage raw if you want. Just shred or slice it and then transfer it to airtight plastic freezer bags or containers.
The benefit of doing this is that you won’t have to spend time cooking the cabbage before freezing it, which will allow you to use your time for other things.
However, you have to be careful when reheating the cabbage since it will need a longer time than blanching or steaming it.
How to Freeze Cooked Cabbage?
If you plan to freeze cooked cabbage, you can do this after cooking it in your preferred method.
You should still process it the same way as if you were freezing raw cabbage.
First of all, place the cooked cabbage on an oven sheet or baking pan and transfer it to a freezer for about 4 hours.
This will allow the cabbage to chill, and it will preserve its taste when thawed.
After the cabbage has chilled, you can transfer it to freezer bags or containers.
These should be labeled with the cooking date for easy identification later on.
You can keep cooked cabbage frozen for three months if properly stored in your freezer at 0°F (-18°C).
When the time comes for you to use the cabbage again, thaw it in a refrigerator.
After thawing it, cook the cabbage in your preferred method before eating.
You can freeze your cabbage if you’ve used it in other meals. This process is different from blanching and freezing cabbage.
There are other ingredients. These are some of the most popular dishes that feature cabbage and how to freeze them.
Freezing Cabbage Casserole
If you want to freeze cabbage casserole for later use, you can do this by storing it in the refrigerator after cooking.
This is because there isn’t any need to separate individual servings of this meal.
You just have to label and date your containers with a permanent marker so that you can identify them easily when you’re looking for specific contents in your refrigerator.
You can also prepare coleslaw for freezing and make it a new side dish to use on days when you have limited ingredients.
This will make your meals more interesting after cooking because of the variety in textures and flavors.
One way to freeze coleslaw is by blanching the cabbage before serving.
After blanching the cabbage, please place it in ice water to make it tender again and let it cool.
It will also help remove any remaining chlorine.
You can then transfer the coleslaw into freezer bags or containers and freeze them for later use too.
Label your containers with the date so that you’ll know when they were frozen.
You can reheat frozen coleslaw by thawing it in the refrigerator and then cooking it.
Freezing Cream of Cabbage Soup
You can also freeze cream of cabbage soup or any other soups you’ve made using cabbages as one main ingredient.
This is a good way to utilize leftover cabbage and other ingredients that you don’t want to waste.
Ensure all the ingredients are chopped or shredded before storing them in your freezer because there isn’t any need for chopping when reheating the soup.
You can just transfer everything into a pot and reheat it.
How to Thaw Frozen Cabbage?
Make sure that you thaw the frozen cabbage correctly to avoid contamination with any bacteria.
This is necessary because cabbages are rich in vitamin C, preventing bacteria growth when it’s frozen properly.
Thawing frozen cabbage is easy, but it will take time. There are two ways you can do this.
The first way is to place the frozen cabbage in your refrigerator and wait for it to thaw naturally.
You can put the container in a special area of the fridge where there’s no other food present to avoid having contact with any other food.
This is the safest way to thaw frozen cabbage because it will not contaminate other food items in your refrigerator.
The other way is to put the frozen cabbage into cold water until it’s completely thawed.
Make sure that you change the water every 30 minutes so bacteria won’t grow on the surface of the thawing cabbage.
Now that you know how to thaw frozen cabbage, why not try some of the recipes listed above? You can’t go wrong with these meals because they feature all the health benefits of cabbage for your body.
How to Tell if Cabbage is Bad?
Cabbage is a type of cruciferous vegetable that’s usually prepared as a side dish.
When kept in the correct conditions, cabbages can last for several months without the need to be refrigerated.
If you’re wondering how to tell if cabbage is bad, there are some signs you should look out for.
If any of these signs are present, it’s best to throw cabbage away at once:
1 – A Bad Odor.
This is one of the most obvious signs that your cabbage might be bad.
When you open the bag or container and take a whiff of the cabbage, you’ll know if there’s any odor coming from it.
If there is, you should get rid of it immediately.
2 – Discoloration.
This is one of the most common signs that your cabbage may not be edible anymore.
Like cruciferous vegetables, cabbages are highly susceptible to discoloration when exposed to air and light during storage.
Discoloration can happen quickly if you don’t store them in the right conditions or are exposed to heat during transportation.
Discolored cabbages usually have a slimy appearance and may smell bad, too, due to bacterial growth.
3 – Leaves Are Loose or Falling Off.
If you find that the leaves no longer hold together tightly in a bundle, it’s best to throw them away immediately.
This can be an indication that the center of your cabbage is rotting.
4 – Spongy or Mushy Texture.
One way to tell if your cabbage has gone bad is by checking for a spongy texture.
If it’s soft and sticky, it’s best to throw it away immediately because this can mean that there are bacterial growths on the vegetable.
In conclusion, cabbage is rich in fiber, vitamin C, and many other health benefits that you can’t get from any other food.
It’s also easy to freeze cabbage since it tastes great when cooked or frozen raw.
To freeze cabbage properly and avoid contamination with bacteria during the thawing process, ensure that all your ingredients are chopped before storing them in the freezer.
You can also defrost the cabbage quickly by using cold water to thaw it, but make sure that you change the water frequently to avoid bacterial growths.