Can You Freeze Bok Choy?

Bok choy is a delicious variety of Chinese cabbage. It can be eaten raw in salads and slaws and the stems can be used as a crunchy container for dips and spreads. Bok choy can also be used in stir-fries, soups, ramen, and other Chinese dishes. It is a highly nutritious vegetable and contains protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

However, say it’s on sale and you decide to stock up. How do you preserve it so that it doesn’t wilt and become inedible? The answer is simple. Freeze it. It freezes well, and in this article, we will tell you how to freeze bok choy and how to defrost it.

How To Freeze Bok Choy

With most vegetables, it is important to blanch them before freezing as it helps to preserve their color, taste, texture, and nutrients. However, blanching adds moisture and this will make the bok choy leaves soggy, so for once, we are advising you not to blanch a vegetable. Instead, follow these instructions:

1. Wash and dry the bok choy.

It is important to remove any dirt by washing the bok choy in cold water. Throw away any damaged leaves. Pat the leaves dry with paper towels. It is important that they are dry when they go in the freezer, otherwise, they will be soggy when they are defrosted. 

2. Slice the leaves.

This is optional. You can keep them whole if you prefer. It will all depend on what you are going to use the bok choy for.

3. Put the bok choy in freezer bags. 

Divide the bok choy into meal-size servings so that you only defrost as much as you need. This will save on waste. Squeeze out as much air as possible so that freezer burn is avoided. Freezer burn ruins the taste and texture of food and also depletes the nutrients. Put labels on the bags with the date you put them in the freezer.

4. Put the bags in the freezer.

Tips For Freezing Bok Choy

  1. Don’t blanch the bok choy as it will make the leaves soggy even if you have completely dried them after blanching.
  2. Only freeze raw bok choy. If you freeze cooked bok choy, it will end up soggy when you come to defrost it. If you think that you have bought too much bok choy for your meal, put some aside so that you can freeze it while it is still raw. By doing this, it will be crunchy when you come to defrost it.  
  3. Squeeze out the air from the freezer bags so that freezer burn doesn’t occur. One way of doing this is to almost close the bag, put a straw in, and suck the air out. Make sure that you then close the bag quickly so that air doesn’t get back in.
  4. Be careful when storing the bok choy in the freezer as it is delicate, and you don’t want to squash it. If you prefer, you can store it in airtight containers which are sturdier than bags. 

For How Long Can You Freeze Bok Choy?

Bok choy can be frozen for six months so you can enjoy it for some time to come without having to go to the store.

How Do You Defrost Bok Choy?

If you are using the bok choy in a salad or slaw, it is a good idea to defrost it slowly and steadily. Put it in the fridge overnight. This will help to keep its texture. If you are pressed for time, you can put the freezer bag in a bowl of room-temperature water. The bok choy will thaw out within two hours. However, the texture might not be as good as if you defrosted it slowly in the fridge overnight. We don’t advise you to defrost the bok choy in the microwave as this will make it go mushy.

On the other hand, if you want to use your bok choy in a soup, stir fry, or other hot Chinese dish, you can simply add it without defrosting. It won’t take long to defrost once it reaches the hot pan.

Can You Refreeze Bok Choy?

No, it isn’t a good idea to refreeze bok choy. Every time you freeze food, ice crystals are formed which adds moisture. If you freeze twice, the bok choy will become soggy. If you have too much bok choy, freeze it in meal-size portions so that you don’t have any cause to refreeze it. 

Is It a Good Idea To Freeze Bok Choy?

Yes, it is a good idea to freeze bok choy as long as you don’t blanch it. It is also important to freeze raw bok choy as cooked bok choy will become soggy if you freeze it. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Hopefully, you now know all there is to know about freezing bok choy, but if you are still curious, we have answered a few questions here.

How long does bok choy last in the fridge?

Bok choy lasts for between five and six days in the fridge, so if you plan to use it within this time frame, put it in the fridge and don’t bother freezing it. 

What is the difference between bok choy and pak choi?

They are both part of the same cabbage. The main difference is that it is called bok choy in the US and pak choi in the UK.

What can I do with my defrosted bok choy?

If you are looking for a hot dish, coconut chicken with sauteed bok choy is delicious as is pork ramen with carrots, zucchini, and bok choy. If you want a vegetarian dish, try baby bok choy with mushroom sauce or vegetables and bok choy with garlic sauce. Make a wonton soup with bok choy or gingery fried rice with bok choy, mushrooms, and basil.  A delicious salad is bok choy with ramen noodles, green onions, almonds, sunflower kernels, and a dressing made from canola oil, cider vinegar, soy sauce, and sugar. A slaw is delicious as well. In addition to the bok choy, add carrots, and scallions. Make a dressing from rice vinegar, toasted sesame oil, sugar, dijon mustard, and salt.

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