While you can get green onions any time of the year, like any vegetable it has a particular season where it’s at its best.
These smaller vegetables are at their best in the spring and summer, and when they’re bought in autumn or winter, they can be a little lackluster by comparison.
They are also usually more expensive, too.
Can you freeze them to save their quality, and save some money at the same time?
If you’ve ever grown green onions, you’ll know how easy it is to suddenly have loads of onions, and not many ideas on how to use them all before they go bad.
While you can stagger crops to some extent by starting them off a week or two later, this isn’t always precise or practical to do, and you’ll never get the same amount of vegetables every year, as it’s so dependent on the weather.
The good news is that you can freeze green onions to save them for a later date without any issues.
The texture will change to some extent, as most food goes through a change when you freeze it, but as long as you freeze it correctly, this is not a problem.
The Shelf Life Of Green Onions
If you keep green onions at room temperature, they’ll last a maximum of 4 days.
If you put them into the vegetable crisper in the fridge, they’ll last anywhere from a week to a fortnight, which gives you some breathing room of when to use them.
After that, you’ll find a soggy and mushy mess which no one wants to eat.
Luckily, you can freeze them, and this can extend the shelf life of green onions for up to a year.
While you can freeze them for this long, aim to use them within a few months of freezing, as they will slowly degrade in the freezer.
Using them within a few months will help retain their quality and freshness. For best results, freeze the green onions as soon as possible, when you know you aren’t going to use them for a while.
Should You Freeze Green Onions?
All parts of a green onion can be frozen. You may find that once thawed, the onions will be less crisp, and the flavor will be less fierce, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use them.
Freezing green onions is a great way to preserve the onions and prevent food waste.
This is especially helpful for those who grow their own green onions, and find that they have far too many, and don’t always have someone else to give their surplus crops to.
Those who don’t grow their own green onions may still prefer them when they’re in season, where they are generally much cheaper and tastier than in other months.
Buying and freezing them in season is a great way to make the most out of this versatile vegetable, while also saving some money.
You may be wary about freezing green onions, but if you freeze them correctly, the only caveat is that they will lose some of their crisp texture.
This is not a dealbreaker, it just means you need to use them in cooked dishes, and reserve fresh green onions for salads.
How Do You Freeze Green Onions?
One thing worth mentioning is that green onions have a very strong odor. I’m sure you know this already, but it is worth noting, because if you pack them wrong when you freeze them, you’ll definitely notice!
The smell is also quite difficult to get rid of, so it’s best to prevent it in the first place.
Make sure not to overfill any container with green onions. This could cause bruising, and result in disappointing green onions.
If you do over pack them, divide them as necessary into more containers.
Don’t forget that the smell of green onions will linger if the containers aren’t sealed properly, otherwise your freezer and the food around the onions will always smell like onions.
If you’re worried about this, you can double bag or even triple bag the onions to prevent this from happening altogether.
How To Prepare Green Onions For The Freezer
The first thing you need to do is rinse the onions under running water. Get rid of any soil, debris, or anything else that shouldn’t be there.
Make sure to completely dry the onions. If they aren’t completely dry, and you freeze them, the texture will be completely different once thawed, and you won’t be able to fix it.
Now, there are two methods you can use to freeze green onions. You can either flash freeze them, which helps to preserve their texture, or you can freeze them without this step.
If you don’t have enough time to flash freeze the green onions, simply chop them up, and decant the pieces into an airtight container or a small freezer bag.
Make sure to seal the bag properly, label it, seal it, and freeze it.
How To Flash Freeze Green Onions
To flash freeze green onions, chop the onions as small or as large as you like. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and lay the green onions in a single layer, making sure that the pieces don’t touch each other.
Put the tray into the freezer, and leave it for an hour. Once the onions are frozen, remove the tray from the freezer and decant the onions into a resealable freezer bag.
You don’t have to portion them, as flash freezing prevents things from sticking together. Seal the bag, label it, and freeze it.
Do You Need To Defrost Green Onions?
If you flash freeze the green onions, you won’t have to defrost them when you’re using a smaller portion.
You can simply throw the green onions into whatever dish you’re making, as they’ll defrost as they cook.
If you need more green onions, and you didn’t flash freeze them, it is a better idea to thaw them first, as they will cook quicker, and it will preserve their texture.
The best way of thawing green onions is to transfer them straight into the fridge, and leave them overnight, and they’ll be ready for the next day.
Green onions add a lot of flavor to any dish that you can think of, and while they have a relatively short shelf life compared to other onions, you can extend it by freezing them for a later date.
When you freeze and thaw green onions, it’s best to use them in cooking, as they won’t have such a fierce flavor after the freezing process, but they’ll still add a wealth of flavor into any dish.