If you are a lemonade fiend like myself or use a lot of lemons in your baking/cooking, then you know how important this citrus fruit is to life. Lemons are not always available and because of this, freezing them is one of the best ways to store this citrus fruit for use year-round.
The great thing about freezing lemons is that it is easy to do and you can be guaranteed to always have some around, especially if they are out of season or expensive because of their lack of availability.
This is also beneficial if they are on sale, you could always buy in bulk, freeze them and have them on hand, so you save yourself some money in the process.
Why Freeze Lemons?
Many reasons why many people freeze lemons. The most common is if you have a bunch on hand that you don’t want to spoil and keep to use at a different time.
Instead of having the fruit spoil, you can store them in the freezer, till you are ready to use them.
Lemons are pretty resilient and store well in the freezer Lemon juice, slices, wedges and whole fruit can last up to 12 months in the freezer. If you are planning on freezing lemon zest, you can keep it anywhere from 1-2 months before it dries out.
How to Freeze Lemon Juice?
Freezing lemon juice was my little cheat code to ensure that I was able to enjoy lemonade all year round without paying exorbitant lemon prices when they were out of season.
Convenience is also a really good thing about freezing lemon juice. You can always squeeze out the juice and store it in the freezer till you are ready to use it.
- Cut lemons in two
- Squeeze out the juice into a cup or container.
- Once finished squeezing out all the lemon juice, pour into ice cube trays and place in the freezer.
- Once the lemon juice has been frozen, remove them from the ice cube trays and transfer to a freezer bag or air-tight container.
- It is always a good idea to label the container or freezer bag, so that you can know the date you put them in the freezer and how long they have been sitting there.
- When ready to use, just take out a frozen lemon juice cube and either let it defrost or use it as it (if you are making smoothies or lemonade, etc.)
You Might Be Interested In: How to Freeze Lemon Juice
Freezing Lemon Slices and Wedges: A Step-by-Step Guide
Depending on where you live, lemons might not be available year-round. If you are planning on using lemon wedges or slices for decoration or your cooking, then you can always freeze them. The process of freezing them is quite easy and not overly-complicated.
- Cut your lemons into the slices or wedges.
- Places the cut wedges on a cookie/baking sheet
- Take the baking sheet of wedges/slices and put in the freezer. Allow them to fully freeze.
- Remove the frozen pieces and wrap them with plastic wrap.
- Place the wrapped lemon slices/wedges in an air-tight container or freezer bag.
- If you have to use individual slices/wedges, you can remove them from freezer till you are ready to use them.
- Defrosting is easy, as you will let the wedges/slices sit at room temperature till fully thawed out.
You Might Be Interested In: How to Freeze Limes
Lemon Zest: How to Prepare for Freezing?
If you do a lot of cooking and have use for lemon zest, you can always store some on hand in the freezer till you have use for it. Lemon zest can be frozen, but please be aware that it can dry out pretty quickly. It is a good idea after a month or two after putting it in the freezer.
- Wash the lemons
- Use a zester or grater on the lemon to get the zest that you need.
- One you have your zest, wrap in plastic wrap. Ensure it is wrapped multiple times to maintain its freshness.
- Place the wrapped zest in an air-tight container or freezer bag.
- Use within the month, as lemon zest will dry out in the freezer in about 1-2 months.
Note: Because lemon zest dries out so quickly, it is a good idea to freeze whole lemons if you want to use the zest further in the future.
How to Freeze Whole Lemons?
If you got a great deal on lemons and don’t want to juice them, you could always store them in the freezer whole till you are ready to use them.
If you plan on juicing the lemon, please be aware that after defrosting it, it will be soft and mushy, which makes it easier to juice.
If you are using the frozen whole lemons for zesting, then it is better to zest them when they are frozen as opposed to when defrosted as they will be a lot softer and harder to handle.
How to Thaw Lemons
Thawing lemons is quite easy and should take a couple of minutes, depending on how much time you have available.
If frozen as ice cubes, you can let sit at room temperature till it is fully defrosted. You could also use directly in the dish you are asking.
To defrost a lemon quickly, you can let it sit at room temperature till it is thawed out.
If you are in a rush and have no time for sitting and waiting, you could always run the frozen lime under warm water for a minute or two.
If you do not have access to warm water, you could also put it in the microwave for about 10 seconds, using the defrost setting.