Freeze Drying · Preserving

Freeze-drying Frozen Vegetables

One of the simplest things we can preserve in our Harvest Right Freeze-dryer is frozen vegetables. A couple of times a year, we run batches to preserve and tuck away. Where we live power outages are a real issue in winter months, and I don’t like keeping a lot in the freezer. I have lost too much food over the years to 3-4 day outages. Once we have freeze-dried the food and sealed it up, we have 1o to 25 years time. Which is quite a long time.

We shop at a restaurant supply store and pick up 5-pound bags of frozen vegetables: pes, petite peas, sweet corn, mixed chopped vegetables, green beans, sliced carrots, and such. The prices at restaurant supply stores are extremely affordable compared to grocery store prices. Here in Western Washington, a 16-ounce bag of frozen vegetables ranges from nearly $3 for store brand to well over $6. The store brand quality is rarely good. In the restaurant supply store, I have found the quality is far better, and the prices range from around $1 a pound to under $2. Which makes it very affordable.

Watching sales is also one way to do it. Buy when it is affordable, and stock up. Then freeze-dry when you have time.

Harvest Right freeze-dryer in use

In a large-size unit, I can put 2 to 2½ pounds on each tray. This is tightly packed, but you can always add fewer vegetables.

It’s as simple as spreading the vegetables on the trays and turning on the dryer. It is automatic now. Then pack up and seal.

Why buy frozen vegetables?

  • Frozen vegetables are blanched beforehand, meaning they are cooked. When you freeze-dry them, they are now “instant” vegetables. Just pour them into soups, rice dishes, and more; they just need to rehydrate. No cooking is needed. And best? You didn’t have to do any of the extra work of blanching (which is a pain to do in the heat of summer).
  • The vegetables are also already frozen, so just pour them on the freeze-dryer trays and pop them in to dry.

Freeze-dried peas


Freeze-dried corn


Freeze-dried mixed vegetables

Mixed vegetables. The tiny carrot dice are very sweet and great for prepper meals. See here for Pantry Staple Recipes to get a lot of ideas! During those power outages we eat really well.

Harvest Right is having its May Sale from now through May 21st, 2014. This is the equivalent of their annual Black Friday Sale, so if you have been wondering if a freeze-dryer might be for you, take a look. If you are a single person, a Small or Medium will work best. The Large is great for families, and those doing a lot of prepping work.