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Extension > Food > Food Safety > Preserving and preparing > Vegetables and herbs > Freezing leafy greens for later use

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Vegetables and herbs

Freezing leafy greens for later use


Suzanne Driessen

Spinach, kale, Swiss chard, beet greens, along with mustard and turnip greens freeze well for year-round enjoyment.

Freezing directions

Follow the steps below to safely freeze your leafy greens.

  1. Select young, tender greens with good color and no blemishes.
  2. Remove soil and grit by rinsing several times under cold running water.
  3. Cut or tear large leaves as desired. Small leaves can be frozen whole.
  4. Blanch* greens in small quantities in about four cups packed per gallon of boiling water.
    • **Collard greens for three minutes.
    • **Other greens for two minutes.
    • **Very tender spinach leaves for 90 seconds.
  5. Cool greens in ice water after blanching for the same of amount of time as blanching.
  6. Drain well.
  7. Pack in freezer containers.
  8. Cover with ice water leaving 1/2" headspace.
  9. Label with date and contents.
  10. Store in freezer for 8 to 12 months.

*Steam blanching of greens is not recommended as the leaves mat together and do not blanch properly.

**Start counting blanching time when water returns to boil. If greens are not blanched properly, they will lose their fresh flavor quickly in frozen storage.


Home Food Preservation Newsletter. August 2011. University of Minnesota Extension.

So Easy to Preserve. 2014. The University of Georgia. p. 315.


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