freeze applesauce

Can You Freeze Applesauce?

Sweet or slightly tart, applesauce is used globally in a variety of cuisines. It is generally served as a condiment but can be incorporated into savory dishes and desserts alike which makes it a handy ingredient to have around.

If you have made a large batch of applesauce, the great news is that you can freeze it to prolong its shelf life and prevent food waste. 

Below is a guide to preserving applesauce successfully in the freezer.

Types of Applesauce

As its name suggests, applesauce is made mainly of apples, peeled or unpeeled. The apples are cooked with water, apple juice, or apple cider with the addition of lemon juice, citric acid, or ascorbic acid for color preservation and safe storage.

Sugar and spices such as cinnamon and allspice are occasionally incorporated for spiced applesauce. 

A range of apple varieties is used to make applesauce yielding various flavor profiles from sweet to slightly tart. Acidic apple varieties such as Bramley apples produce a finer puree than sweet apples.

This inexpensive and easy-to-make condiment is also widely available in grocery stores. Commercial applesauce may contain additional preservatives to enhance the shelf life, color, and consistency of the product.

Applesauce is used in soups, or to accompany pork, turkey, or sausage in savory dishes.

Versatile in its use, applesauce can also be added as a cake filling, yogurt topping, baked into cookies, pancakes, or cakes, and added to oatmeal for a breakfast bowl. You can also blend it into a smoothie mix.

Can Applesauce Be Frozen?

Yes, freezing homemade applesauce and store-bought applesauce is a great way to prolong the shelf life of this condiment. Both of them keep well in the freezer.

As with any frozen food, it is important to protect the sauce from contact with air and moisture on freezing to prevent freezer burn. It is also best to freeze the applesauce soon after it has been made to ensure an excellent quality product once thawed.

The older the apple sauce is when freezing, the poorer the quality will be once thawed. Applesauce that is nearing its expiry should not be frozen but rather used or thrown out.


How To Freeze Applesauce

Step 1: Cool

If the applesauce has been heated or freshly made, cool it to room temperature before freezing. 

Freezing homemade applesauce while still warm will cause large ice crystals to form which will cause freezer burn, ruining the texture, and flavor.

Step 2: Portion and Pack

To freeze individual portions of applesauce, pour it into an ice cube tray and place it in the freezer. 

Once fully frozen, pop the cubes out of the tray and place them in a resealable freezer bag, pressing out any air before sealing.

To freeze larger quantities, pour or scoop the desired portion sizes into resealable freezer bags. Carefully lay the bag flat, pressing out as much air as possible before sealing the bag.

Make sure to leave some headspace as the applesauce may expand slightly on freezing. 

Step 3: Label

Label each bag with the date so you can keep track of how long the applesauce has been frozen.

Step 4: Freeze

Cubes: Place the freezer bags with applesauce cubes in a cold part of the freezer which retains a consistent temperature.

Puree: Lie the bags of applesauce puree flat on a baking sheet and place it in the freezer to harden in an even layer. 

Once hard, remove the baking sheet and stack the flat bags back in the freezer. This allows the apple sauce to freeze and defrost evenly and keeps the freezer tidy as you can stack the flat pouches as desired.


How To Thaw Frozen Applesauce

To defrost the applesauce, remove the bag from the freezer and place it on a plate or in a bowl before putting it in the refrigerator. Let it thaw slowly overnight. The plate will catch any water dripping off the bag. Once thawed, give it a stir to ensure a smooth consistency.

If adding the applesauce to a soup, casserole, or sauce, it can be added from frozen. Applesauce ice cubes can be added straight to a smoothie without thawing.


FAQs

Conclusion

Applesauce is deliciously sweet, tart, and way too good to waste. Versatile for use in sweet and savory applications, it is the perfect condiment to have on hand to spruce up breakfast, lunch, tea, or dinner.

Freeze leftover applesauce in individual portions for smoothies or larger portions for use in family meals or baking. Besides having a delicious sauce on hand at the drop of a hat, freezing applesauce will save you time, money, and prevent food waste.

Up next: Can you freeze cranberry sauce?

*Image Dream79/depositphotos

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