Are you sick of Zucchini yet? After you have baked, sautéed, stuffed, and grilled about as much as you can stand, here are several ways to preserve zucchini so you can enjoy the summer harvest bounty over the winter months.
Zucchini….It’s the crop that keeps on giving. It is easy to become overwhelmed by the harvest bounty collected from even a few plants in the vegetable garden.
By late summer, I stop trying to find new ways to use zucchini and summer squash and focus instead on methods to preserve zucchini to use over the winter months.
Here are three easy ways to preserve zucchini:
Freezing zucchini is one of the easiest ways to preserve an abundant harvest that comes in all at once. Having a supply of zucchini in your freezer will make it easy to grab and use in your favorite meals and baked goods.
Here are 5 ways you can freeze zucchini:
- Zucchini Slices or Pieces: Zucchini slices, cubes, or pieces come in handy for sautés, soups, stir-fry, and casseroles. Keep the zucchini slices frozen until you are ready to use and just toss them in.
- Shredded Zucchini: Shredded zucchini can be used to make frittatas, quiche, and baked goods such as zucchini bread and muffins. Thaw the frozen shredded zucchini first before adding to your recipes. Keep the liquid if you are using the shredded zucchini in baked goods, but drain it if you are making frittatas or quiche.
- Zoodles or Zucchini Noodles: Frozen zucchini noodles are a great addition to soups, stir-fry, and as a substitute for pasta topped with your favorite sauce. Use frozen and cook briefly, only about a minute.
- Zucchini Halves: Blanched and frozen zucchini halves are ready for filling with you favorite stuffing and baking in the oven. Thaw before using in your favorite zucchini boat recipe, or simply drizzle with garlic and roast in the oven until tender.
- Zucchini Purée: Zucchini purée is so handy to have in the freezer for using in smoothies, soups, sauces, and baked goods. Thaw before using and add to your recipes. You can also use zucchini puree in any baked goods recipe that calls for shredded zucchini.
Dried zucchini takes up very little space. Believe it or not, about four pounds of zucchini will shrink enough to fit into one pint sized jar. If you have a food dehydrator, put it to use to preserve zucchini by drying it.
Use dehydrated zucchini in your favorite soup and pasta dishes. For pasta, just add the dehydrated zucchini to the boiling water at the same time you add pasta. By the time the pasta is done, the zucchini will be rehydrated too and ready for your favorite sauce.
Can Zucchini Pickles and Relish
Zucchini can also be pickled and canned using a water bath canner. Preserve your enormous harvest of zucchini from your late-summer garden with these safe canning recipes:
Zucchini Sweet and Sour Pickles
Line your storage shelves with home canned zucchini pickles, featuring zucchini, onions, turmeric, and other spices in the simple pickling brine.
I hope that knowing you can preserve zucchini and summer squash to enjoy during the winter months helps you deal with the abundant crop that just keeps on giving.
This article was originally published September 2, 2014. It has been updated with more information.
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