If you are wondering how to freeze summer squash so you can enjoy it later, this post is for you! I have used this method several summers in a row with great success. Squash can be very prolific when it comes to production, and this is a great way to preserve your harvest. Even if you do not garden, you can buy fresh summer squash in bulk when it is in season. Frozen summer squash is one of my absolute favorite things to have in the freezer!
The best way I have found to freeze summer squash is to bread it first and lay it out on a baking sheet to freeze before bagging it. I do not blanch my squash and still get a delicious result when frying. I tried freezing it without breading, but it got too soft and watery to bread it after defrosting. You could freeze it without breading if you plan to make squash casserole with it.
What You Will Need
- large baking sheet
- freezer ziploc bags
- gallon ziploc bag or large bowl (for breading the squash)
- seasonings of your choice (I use onion powder)
- breading of your choice (I use all purpose flour)
Once you have gathered all of your supplies, the first step is to wash your squash really well. Make sure you are using good quality squash with no blemishes. Next, cut it all up and put it into a gallon ziploc or large bowl. Everyone has a different preference when it comes to how to cut it for frying. I like to cut mine lengthwise into fourths then cut those into small cubes. They fry really well in this shape and I can fit more into my pan without overcrowding it. However you like to do it will be just fine.
Next, lightly salt your squash BEFORE breading it. Let it sit for about 5 minutes. This is a very important step because it will help draw some of the moisture out of the squash. As a result, the flour mixture will stick to the squash well.
While the squash sits, mix your flour with the seasonings of your choice. Remember, you already salted the squash so do not add very much salt, if any at all, to this mixture. It is really easy to salt each batch of squash after you fry it if you find that it isn’t salty enough. However, you cannot fix it if you accidentally add to much salt.
Add the flour mixture to your squash and shake until the squash is completely breaded. I like to do this adding a small amount of flour at a time so I am not left with a lot of leftover flour in the bottom of my bag. It is not as messy when you go to bag it.
Lastly, lay out your breaded squash onto a large baking sheet. Freeze overnight or at least 6 hours. When the squash is completely frozen you can portion it into your freezer bags.
Tips for Cooking Frozen Squash
When you are ready to cook your frozen squash, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, you want to keep the squash in the freezer until your oil is hot. Do not defrost the squash prior to cooking. It will begin to get mushy before it has a chance to brown. Secondly, make sure your oil is very hot before adding your squash. I start mine on high heat, just make sure you to use an oil that is for high heat cooking. I like to use avocado oil or lard. When you add the frozen squash it will significantly cool down your oil so you need to start with it very hot.
Follow my tips and you can enjoy delicious summer squash year ’round!