Ginger, with its spicy taste and scent, has long been used in cooking and medicine. This versatile root is used globally to spice up stir-fries, give depth to soups, and ease sore throats with ginger tea.
Now, suppose you have more ginger than you can use right away. Are there any options for long-term storage?
- Can you freeze ginger?
- Things you need
- How to prep your ginger for freezing
- How to freeze ginger root
- How long can you freeze ginger?
- How do you defrost ginger?
- How to use frozen ginger?
- Can you refreeze ginger?
- Does ginger freeze well?
- Does freezing ginger lose nutrients?
- Does frozen ginger taste good?
- How long does ginger last?
- How to store ginger in the fridge?
- Can ginger be stored at room temperature?
Can you freeze ginger?
Yes, freezing ginger root unlocks a new level of culinary convenience.
On hectic weeknights, frozen ginger saves the day. I can easily add a grated portion to the stir-fry for an immediate burst of flavor.
What’s important is that it can all be done without sacrificing its taste and benefits.
Things you need
This preservation quest requires a few essentials:
- Fresh ginger roots: Start with fresh, firm, undamaged ginger roots. Choose young, smooth-skinned chunks that freeze and defrost well.
- Knife or grater: Use a sharp knife or grater to slice, dice, or grate ginger. The outer skin can be removed with a vegetable peeler too.
- Airtight containers or freezer bags: To avoid freezer burn and moisture loss. Ginger will also retain taste and texture in these freezer-safe containers.
- Labeling materials: Use sticky labels and a marker to mark containers with the freezing date. This lets you monitor ginger’s freshness and use.
That’s all you have to gather to get started.
How to prep your ginger for freezing
Prepping ginger for freezing ensures a ready supply for your cooking. Follow these step-by-step instructions:
- Select high-quality ginger roots. Look for firm, smooth, blemish-free ones. Due to their softness, younger ginger roots freeze better.
- Wash and clean. Under cold running water, carefully clean the ginger with a vegetable brush to remove dirt and residue. This prevents any undesired particles from ending up in your freezer.
- Peeling (optional). Ginger can be frozen without peeling, although some like it for texture consistency. Take a spoon, vegetable peeler or knife and carefully peel the ginger skin.
- Cut or slice. Ginger can be sliced, diced, or chopped to your liking. Remember that smaller chunks defrost faster and more evenly.
- Prep airtight containers or freezer bags. Ginger should be stored in sealed containers or freezer-safe bags. Make sure they’re clean and dry before using.
Now your pieces of ginger and containers are almost ready to go into the freezer.
How to freeze ginger root
Here’s how to go about freezing ginger pieces:
- Portion and pack. Portion ginger according to your recipe requirements to quickly get the proper quantity while cooking. Leave a tiny space at the top of the container or bag for freezing expansion.
- Seal and eliminate air. Press out as much air as possible before closing freezer bags. Keep container lids locked to prevent air from entering.
- Label containers. Label bags and containers with the current date. Trust me, it’s worth the additional effort. It’s saved me from guessing a few times.
- Freeze. Store sealed containers or bags in the freezer. Start with a single layer to freeze quicker and more evenly. Once frozen solid, you can stack them better in the freezer.
Proper packing is essential, as I found out the hard way. The first time I tried to freeze ginger, I didn’t make a good enough seal on the container, and it got freezer burn.
So don’t miss the labeling and sealing steps!
These easy techniques will give you a tasty item on hand to enhance your cuisine whenever inspiration strikes.
How to clean ginger?
- Gently scrape the ginger with your fingers or a soft brush under cold running water, then rinse.
- Use a spoon or knife to peel ginger before using it (optional).
- Remove any dried or damaged ends.
- Dry the ginger by patting it gently with a paper towel to absorb any remaining moisture.
How to peel ginger?
Take a spoon and firmly grasp the ginger with one hand. Scrape the skin off the ginger using the edge of a spoon. Use gentle pressure to peel away the skin without damaging the soft flesh below.
If you’d rather use a knife, you can grasp the ginger and gently slice off the peel by following the root’s natural curves.
Check for any leftover bits of skin and trim them off. You can also rinse the ginger under cold water to remove any remaining skin.
How long can you freeze ginger?
When properly prepared and kept, frozen ginger lasts 6-8 months.
Technically, it can be frozen for longer, although the quality may decrease after this period.
How do you defrost ginger?
Here’s how to defrost ginger easily and effectively:
Partial thawing for slicing or grating
You can slice or grate frozen ginger immediately from its frozen form. Work with solid pieces using a sharp knife or grater. This helps in ginger recipes that demand finely grated or thinly sliced ginger.
I love grating frozen ginger for an immediate taste boost. My cooking (especially my beloved Asian-inspired stir-fries) has been revolutionized thanks to this.
Thawing larger pieces
For bigger ginger pieces like chunks or knobs, a little thawing time can be essential for easy handling. Way to do it:
- Room temperature thawing: Place frozen ginger on a plate or chopping board and defrost for 15-30 minutes. This should soften ginger for slicing, dicing, or grating.
- Under running water: Hold the frozen ginger under cold running water. It can swiftly thaw ginger without affecting its taste. This strategy is great when you’re in a hurry.
- Don’t over-thaw ginger: Too much moisture can ruin its texture and taste.
- Use quickly: Use thawed ginger in your recipe as soon as possible.
- Store for a short period: You can keep extra ginger in an airtight jar in the fridge for a short time. For the finest taste, use it sooner rather than later.
Following these defrosting instructions will preserve the optimal taste and texture for your best gingery recipes.
How to use frozen ginger?
Even when fresh ginger isn’t available, frozen ginger can provide warmth and zest to your dishes. How to use frozen ginger in your favorite recipes:
- Direct incorporation
Add grated or thinly sliced frozen ginger to recipes without thawing. The fact that I can grate frozen ginger into the saucepan and see it melt into my curry, stir-fry, soup, sauce, or marinade is like my secret ingredient hack.
- Quick thawing
If your recipe requires bigger ginger pieces like chunks or slices, quickly defrost them before use. Place the frozen ginger root on a dish at room temperature for 15-30 minutes or use cold water to defrost it.
- Blending into smoothies or juices
Blend a tiny piece of frozen ginger with your favorite fruits and veggies for a spicy boost. It can complement the sweetness and provide depth to your drink.
- Infusing beverages
Infuse beverages by adding a frozen ginger slice to boiling water for a warming and calming drink. Add it to cold water, lemonade, or other drinks for a pleasant twist.
- Homemade ginger paste
Create a ginger paste by blending a big piece of frozen ginger into a smooth paste using a food processor or mortar and pestle. Store it in an airtight jar in the fridge.
- Baking and desserts
For a slightly spicy flavor, grated frozen ginger can be added to baking dishes such as cookies, cakes, and muffins. Desserts like fruit crisps or compotes pair nicely with it too.
- Ingredient substitutions
If you need a bit of spice in your meal, you can use ginger as a substitute for horseradish root, galangal, or white turmeric.
For more info on white turmeric (zedoary), check out my collection of veggies starting with Z.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with both sweet and savory dishes. If you like things on the mild side, start with less ginger and work up from there.
Can you freeze fresh ginger root?
Yes, you can freeze fresh ginger root. It’s a great option for preserving it for a long period of time.
Can I freeze ginger without peeling?
Yes, you can freeze unpeeled ginger root but the skin can impact the texture and taste of your thawed ginger.
So I recommend peeling for a smoother consistency.
Can you freeze ginger root whole?
Yes, you can freeze ginger root whole in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag.
You can grate or slice your thumb of ginger into your meals without thawing when needed.
Can you freeze ginger juice?
Yes, ginger juice can be frozen.
Use fresh ginger juice to freeze in ice cube trays or in tiny portions. Put frozen ginger juice cubes in a freezer bag for storage.
Can you freeze grated ginger?
Yes, you can freeze grated ginger root. Here’s how:
- Grate fresh ginger root.
- Portion it into teaspoon or tablespoon amounts and set them in an ice cube tray.
- Freeze the tray for 3-4 hours.
- Transfer frozen cubes to a freezer bag for further preservation.
Can you freeze chopped ginger?
Yes, chopped ginger can be frozen.
Cut the ginger, set it on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and freeze for about an hour.
Once separately frozen, place your ginger pieces in a ziplock bag or freezer-safe container for storage in the freezer.
Can you freeze ginger paste?
Yes, you can freeze fresh ginger paste.
Blend raw ginger with a little water or oil to make a paste. Freeze the paste in teaspoon amounts in an ice cube tray. Put ginger paste cubes in a freezer bag after they are completely frozen.
How to preserve ginger paste?
Here’s how to preserve fresh ginger paste if you’re not planning to freeze it:
- Acidic medium: Mix the ginger paste with a little lemon juice or vinegar. The natural acidity inhibits bacterial growth.
- Airtight container: Pour it into a clean, dry, and air-tight glass jar.
- Oil coating: Cover the ginger paste with a thin coating of vegetable or olive oil. This barrier prevents air and moisture from accessing the paste.
- Sealing and storage: Seal and keep the jar carefully in the fridge.
- Use: Scoop a dollop of ginger paste from the container based on your recipe. Use a clean spoon to prevent moisture.
How to store ginger tea?
After the tea has cooled, refrigerate it in an airtight, freezer-safe container for up to 3-4 days.
Alternatively, freeze tea in ice cube trays for later use.
How to store ginger bread?
You can store gingerbread effectively either at room temperature or frozen:
- Freshly baked: The shelf life of gingerbread cookies and cake is extended by keeping them in an airtight container at room temperature.
- Extended storage: You can keep baked gingerbread treats fresh in the freezer for up to 3 months. Wrap them individually in plastic wrap or aluminum foil once they’ve cooled. Then transfer them to an airtight container or freezer bag. Defrost frozen gingerbread in the refrigerator overnight.
Can you freeze gingerbread dough?
Yes, you can freeze gingerbread dough for up to 2-3 months wrapped in plastic wrap and stored in an airtight container or bag.
I recently tried it and I have to admit that the gingerbread pancakes turned out well after I defrosted the dough. Really enjoyed them!
Can you freeze gingerbread cookies?
Yes, you can freeze gingerbread cookies. First, place them on a tray and allow them to freeze solid before transferring them to a freezer-safe bag.
You can keep them in the freezer for a couple of months.
Can you freeze ginger cake?
Yes, a ginger cake can be frozen.
Double-wrap the cake in plastic and foil before sealing it. Put it in the freezer, and you have two or three months to enjoy it.
Can you freeze gingerbread cake?
Yes, you can freeze gingerbread cake the same way as ginger cake. Wrap the cake in plastic wrap and foil before placing it in a sealed bag or container in the freezer.
Can you refreeze ginger?
Refreezing thawed ginger is not advised. It affects the ginger’s texture, taste, and quality.
Does ginger freeze well?
Yes, ginger freezes quite well. Its warm flavor, aroma, and nutrients are preserved so that you can use your leftover ginger pieces later.
Does freezing ginger lose nutrients?
Ginger loses certain nutrients when frozen, although the loss is usually minimal. Note this:
- Vitamin C: Freezing retains a good amount of vitamin C in ginger.
- Gingerol: Provides several health advantages, and is mostly unaffected by freezing.
- Fiber: Ginger’s fiber content doesn’t significantly change when frozen.
- Minerals: Potassium, magnesium and other minerals are largely retained in frozen pieces.
- Antioxidants: Ginger remains a source of antioxidants despite a slight reduction.
While freezing ginger may reduce certain nutrients, it preserves most of its nutritional characteristics and anti-inflammatory properties.
Does frozen ginger taste good?
Yes, frozen ginger root tastes good and retains its zesty kick and aromatic warmth.
How long does ginger last?
Properly preserved fresh ginger can last for weeks. In general:
- Room temperature: 1-2 weeks (unpeeled).
- Refrigerator: 3-4 weeks.
- Freezer: 6-8 months.
Ginger’s shelf life depends on its freshness, storage, moisture and air protection. Always inspect it for signs of mold, decay, or changes in texture before using.
How to store ginger in the fridge?
These methods will keep ginger fresh in the fridge:
- Choose firm, undamaged ginger roots with smooth skin.
- Peel the ginger using a spoon or knife. Peeling is optional but helps keep the texture.
- Gently wipe the ginger dry and wrap it in a paper towel. This absorbs moisture and inhibits mold.
- Put the wrapped ginger in a plastic or resealable bag. Squeeze out any excess air before sealing the bag.
- Store it in the vegetable crisper drawer of your refrigerator. Ginger benefits from this area’s greater humidity.
- Regularly inspect ginger for mold or deterioration. If problems arise, remove the affected parts immediately.
These procedures will keep ginger fresh in the fridge for 3-4 weeks, letting you enjoy its unique taste and flexibility in cooking.
Can ginger be stored at room temperature?
Yes, ginger can be stored at room temperature for about 1-2 weeks.
Keep it away from dampness and bright sunshine. Maintain a cool, dry, well-ventilated environment.
I’ve found via my own cooking tests that the distinctive bite of frozen ginger is alive and well in the meals I prepare.
Now that you know how to freeze ginger root, don’t be afraid to give it a try!
If you’d like to know more about preserving staple ingredients, check out my other posts, including: how to freeze Parmesan cheese, freezing tips for asparagus and my how-to guide to freezing broccoli.
How to freeze ginger
- Ginger roots
- Select and Clean: Choose firm, smooth ginger roots. Clean ginger under cold water with a brush.
- Peel (Optional) and Cut: Peel ginger for consistent texture. Slice, dice, or chop as desired.
- Pack and Seal: Portion ginger and pack in airtight containers. Leave space for freezing expansion. Press out air in freezer bags, seal containers tightly.
- Label and Freeze: Label with the date. Freeze in a single layer initially.