Freezing apples and applesauce
When freezing apples, make sure you begin with apples that are firm, crisp and ripe, free of bruises and decay. Avoid apples that have a mealy texture, like Red Delicious. Apple varieties suitable for pie and sauce are good candidates for freezing.
- Wash apples in cold water.
- Cut them in quarters.
- Remove the core portion.
- Cut into pie slices.
Consider making a test batch to see how well the variety freezes. Once the apples are frozen, thaw them and boil the slices for a few minutes. If they stay firm, you have a good freezing apple.
To prevent browning
- To prevent browning, dissolve ½ teaspoon (1500 mg) ascorbic acid in 3 tablespoons water or commercial product according to manufacturer directions. Sprinkle over apple slices. Or, steam blanch apple slices for 1½ to 2 minutes.
- After you have soaked the apples in the ascorbic acid solution, drain them well and freeze using a dry pack or sugar syrup freezing method described below.
Dry pack freezing
This involves freezing individual slices on a cookie sheet. When they're solidly frozen, remove the slices with a spatula and pack in freezer plastic bags or plastic freezer containers. To freeze pie slices, place the sliced apples in a pie, sugar and spice mixture into an aluminum pie plate and wrap with heavy duty foil. When you are ready to bake your pie, pop the frozen apple pie mixture out of the plate and slip directly onto the crust. Bake the completed apple pie at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 375 degrees for 30 to 45 minutes. Finish baking the pie until the crust is golden brown and apple mixture is bubbling.
for pie, applesauce or in other
recipes that call for cooked apples.
Freezing unsweetened apple juice or sugar syrup
Make a syrup using two cups of sugar to four cups of water. Add one-half teaspoon ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) to the sugar syrup mixture to prevent browning. Pour one-half to three-quarters cup of syrup over each pint of apple slices. Leave one-half to one-inch headspace in the freezer container to allow for expansion during freezing. Seal the containers, label and freeze.
Freezing apples whole with the skins on
Wash the whole apples, drain, core and dry. Place them in freezer bags and freeze. When you're ready to use them, run cold water over each frozen apple, just before peeling. Apples frozen whole can be used for pie, applesauce or in other recipes that call for cooked apples.
To freeze applesauce
Cook the peeled and cored apples and mash the pulp into sauce. You can add sugar, but leave out the spices. Spices lose their flavor with freezing, so plan on adding them to the sauce after you thaw it. Cool the sauce in a shallow pan in the refrigerator. When it's completely cool, pack the sauce in rigid freezer containers, leaving one inch of headspace, and freeze. Frozen apples may be stored for a year at 0 degrees Fahrenheit.
Freezing Apples — National Center for Home Food Preservation
Revised by Suzanne Driessen 2016