Can You Freeze Cabbage – A Comprehensive Guide
Almost every household has fresh cabbage, shredded cabbage, or even red cabbage in their kitchen, especially for Asians. Countless recipes use cabbage as an ingredient.
- cabbage wedges
- stuffed cabbage rolls
- Cabbage parcels – see our instant pot recipe.
- Cabbage Soup
- Fried Cabbage
Can You Freeze Cabbage? The quick answer to “Can You Freeze Cabbage” is “Yes, it freezes well if prepared correctly“. Follow our detailed step-by-step methods and guides below to find your favorite recipe for freezing cabbage.
Freezing different foods certainly is a skill – see how to freeze pasta salad.
It is one of the healthiest leafy vegetables since it is an excellent vitamin K, folate, fiber, calcium, iron, potassium, and vitamins A, B6, and C. It also contains antioxidants such as beta carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, and lycopene.
However, since this is a perishable and versatile vegetable, the storage process should be followed to maximize shelf life and minimize food waste. A lot of people store the cabbage on top of kitchen tops or in the fridge. Some would also place them in the freezer if they knew to do it.
So, in this article, we will be answering several questions about freezing cabbage.
Read more below to see the answers to these questions:
Can You Refrigerate and Freeze Cabbage
Yes! As mentioned above, cabbage is very versatile and can be cooked in many different ways. However, if you want to preserve its nutrients, then freezing is your best bet. This vegetable may be perishable, but it can surely adapt to the freezing or cold temperature in the fridge and freezer. However, there are tips, tricks that you can follow to prevent your cabbage from spoiling quickly inside a cold temperature. Follow the steps and suggestions below:
- Whether you are freezing the veggie or just simply storing it in the fridge, the first step should be cleaning your hands before touching them. Bacteria and germs are the number one contaminants of food.
- Wash the raw cabbage head since it mostly stores insects such as beetles, earwigs, caterpillars, etc. Wash the cabbage leaves by soaking them in a salt solution. Use two tablespoons of salt and pour it in a gallon of clean water.
- Soak the cabbage leaf or raw cabbage for 5 minutes or 20 minutes for a whole cabbage. You can opt to slice into cabbage wedges.
- Rinse and freeze straight away to avoid cross-contamination. Use a ziploc bag or a clean freezer bag.
- You can take out the frozen cabbage after 12 hours.
Can You Freeze Cabbage Without Blanching?
Yes. Blanching the raw cabbage is common for people since it is an essential step for cabbage rolls or other cabbage recipe(s) like egg rolls. You can also blanch a whole cabbage leaf. It is a method wherein the leafy veggie is instantly immersed in boiling water to preserve and maintain the green colors. However, some prefer not to do this.
Here are the steps to freezing the cabbage without blanching it.
- Wash and rinse the fresh cabbage, especially the outer leaves, thoroughly.
- Shred or thinly slice the green leaves to make sure that no insects are remaining in the vegetable.
- Drain the excess water from the leaves by using a colander and pat dry with a paper towel.
- Place the sliced or shredded cabbage on a baking tray or any container.
- Freeze until solid. You can then pack it into a plastic bag or ziploc bag.
How to Freeze Whole A Cabbage?
If you want to freeze your cabbage head whole (which is awkward and takes up too much space in the freezer), you might find it hard if you have limited space in your freezer. However, it is still possible to do so. Know that defrosting/thawing your cabbage will be slower with a whole cabbage head. If you only need smaller pieces, you should slice them into quarters. It is never advisable to freeze the same item twice after thawing. With that, here are the things that you need to do in the freezing process:
- You should first soak it in a gallon of water and 3 tablespoons of salt.
- Rinse it well and remove the outer and saggy leaves.
- Choose if you want to blanch it or leave it raw. This may be more challenging with a whole cabbage head, but it is still possible with larger utensils.
- Dry it off and flash freeze it.
- Place it in an airtight container and then freeze.
Can You Freeze Cooked Cabbage?
But, can you freeze cooked cabbage? – yes, you can; here is how.
If you have leftovers from your last night’s dinner with family and friends, you can simply freeze them to further their shelf life. Here’s how to do it:
- Before freezing, let the cabbage dish cool for 8-10 minutes.
- Transfer it into an airtight container. You can also use freezer zip-locks and other containers as long as they cannot let the air and moisture get in.
- Freeze it for a maximum period of five to six months.
- When you plan to consume it again, thaw it first in the fridge overnight.
See our cooked cabbage and corned beef recipe.
How Long Can You Freeze Cabbage
Cabbage can last longer in the freezer if properly stored, without any hint of food contamination. It can remain at its best for more than six months in the freezer and still be safe to eat. At the same time, blanched cabbage remains its good quality longer than those that are not blanched. If you want to blanch your cabbage, follow these steps:
- Boil it in salted water for 2-3 minutes. Take more time if you have a bunch of cabbage wedges.
- Transfer the cabbage leaves to icy water to stop the cooking process.
- Drain and rinse under cold running water (ice water).
- Place the blanched cabbage on a cookie sheet, ensuring enough room for the cold temperature to get in.
- Freeze them for 4-5 hours.
- Move the frozen cabbage to an airtight container or plastic bag if you do not plan to cook it immediately.
Can You Refreeze Frozen Cabbage
It is never good practice to freeze cabbage twice. The two main reasons why you should not freeze raw cabbage or cooked cabbage twice are
- You run the risk of growing bacteria as the cabbage pieces go through the temperature range that can grow bacteria as it thaws and then cools. Plus there is always the risk of cross-contamination.
- Food degradation, even if you do not grow bacteria – the food degrades in taste and texture each time you freeze and then thaw and reheat.
Other key Cabbage Freezer handing steps are
- Keep the frozen cabbage in the freezer until needed.
- Do not defrost the frozen cabbage overnight. Instead, let it sit for about 30 minutes before reheating.
- Cook the frozen cabbage within 3 days maximum.
- Instead of freezing, If you find yourself with leftover cabbage, try making pickles or sauerkraut! They go great together.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can You Freeze Cabbage After Cooking It?
If you already cooked the cabbage, then yes, you can freeze it as well. Just like how you would store uncooked cabbage, you should also place it into an airtight container. Ensure that the container has been well sealed tight so that moisture does not escape. This way, when you open the package later, you won’t end up having soggy cabbage.
Can You Cook With Frozen Cabbage?
Yes, you can cook with frozen cabbage. In fact, many people enjoy eating it straight out of the freezer. But, just like other foods, you must first defrost them before preparing them. For instance, if you were planning to boil the cabbage, wait till it’s fully defrosted before adding salt and pepper. And, if you’re going to add spices such as garlic powder, onion powder, etc., then mix them in while the cabbage before the cabbage is cooked.
How to Thaw Frozen Cabbage?
To thaw frozen cabbage, simply put it in a bowl filled with lukewarm water. Leave it undisturbed for 10-15 minutes or until it becomes soft. Drain off excess liquid and pat dry using paper towels. But the best method is to thaw it in the refrigerator for at least overnight. This step will help the veggie adapt to the temperature change without compromising the quality.
What are the different types of cabbage that can be Frozen
- Chinese cabbage
- savoy cabbage
- Red Cabbage
- green cabbage
Can you freeze shredded cabbage for coleslaw?
The short answer to “Can you freeze shredded cabbage for coleslaw?” is “No, it will not be crisp enough for coleslaw” You should make the coleslaw before freezing.