Can You Freeze Jalapenos?

By Charlotte King

Jalapenos can give a spicy and crunchy kick to your meals, but it can be challenging to use all your fresh produce before it goes bad. Luckily, you can quickly freeze jalapenos when you do not have time to prep them immediately. Freeze them whole, cut up, or chopped depending on how you plan to use the jalapenos in the future!

Freezing jalapenos is simple and only takes a few minutes. Start by washing and cutting fresh, high-quality jalapenos. You can even blanch the jalapenos for a few minutes in boiling water to preserve more flavor. After preparing the jalapenos, flash freeze them for a few hours to minimize ice crystal formation. Finally, when frozen solid, transfer them to freezer-safe containers for storage!

Jalapenos can give a spicy and crunchy kick to your meals, but it can be challenging to use all your fresh produce before it goes bad. Luckily, you can quickly freeze jalapenos when you do not have time to prep them immediately. Freeze them whole, cut up, or chopped depending on how you plan to use the jalapenos in the future!
jalapeno pepper on wooden cutting board

Preparing to Freeze Jalapenos

green chopped jalapenos with knife on wooden cutting board

How to Pick Fresh Jalapenos

Picking fresh produce is essential to have better results. Here are a few simple tips to help you buy and pick fresh jalapenos:

Tip #1: Check the jalapenos’ color. Fresh jalapenos should be glossy with a deep green color.

Tip #2: Avoid jalapenos that are small and curved. 

Tip #3: Check the jalapenos by squeezing them slightly with your fingers. Fresh jalapenos will be firm. Avoid any that are soft and limp.

Supplies You Need

Jalapenos

Start with as many or as few jalapenos as you would like. The more freezer space you have, the more jalapenos you can freeze!

Safety Gloves

You may find safety gloves helpful, especially if you want to avoid contamination and accidental pains. Use kitchen gloves to make this task easier and save your hands or eyes from unnecessary pain!

Freezer Containers

You can have whole, half, or diced pieces when storing frozen jalapenos. You can use freezer-safe jars or freezer-safe bags for storage, depending on jalapeno sizes. Whichever you choose to use, make sure you use safe products for freezer storage!

How to Freeze Jalapenos

Freezing jalapenos is easy to preserve extra peppers, but you will lose some of their crunchy texture. Still, they will not lose their spicy flavor for at least six months when frozen properly!

Prepare the Jalapenos

Wash the Jalapenos

Before freezing jalapenos, you should wash and disinfect them with these easy steps:

  1. Start by washing the jalapenos in water.
  2. Mix water and vinegar in a 3:1 ratio and soak the jalapenos for a few minutes in it. Since there is no peeling involved with jalapenos, you should disinfect them with a vinegar solution. 
  3. Rinse the jalapenos with freshwater before draining them into a colander.

Cut the Jalapenos

After washing the jalapenos, you should cut them with these simple steps:

  1. Trim off the stems from all the jalapenos and scoop out the seeds using a spoon. 
  2. Depending on your preference, you can cut the jalapenos into halves, dice them, or leave the jalapenos whole.

Blanch the Jalapenos

While unnecessary, you can blanch the jalapenos before freezing them to preserve more flavor and texture. To blanch jalapenos, follow these easy steps:

  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil.
  2. Blanch the jalapenos for 2-3 minutes in the boiling water.
  3. Transfer the jalapenos to a bowl of ice-cold water to stop their cooking process.
  4. Drain the jalapenos with paper towels to soak up any extra moisture.

Flash Freeze the Jalapenos

Flash freezing means quickly exposing the jalapenos to very low temperatures. This minimizes the size of any ice crystals formed and the chances of breakage when the jalapenos thaw.

You can repeat these steps in batches if you are freezing many jalapenos. To flash freeze jalapenos, follow these simple steps:

  1. Line a baking tray with parchment paper and spread the jalapenos in a single layer. Ensure no jalapenos overlap to avoid frozen clumps. 
  2. Load your prepared tray into the freezer for 1-2 hours, or until the jalapenos have frozen solid.

Store the Jalapenos

After freezing the jalapenos, you can store them in freezer-safe containers with these easy steps:

  1. Transfer the jalapenos from the trays and into freezer containers. If you have whole pieces, store them in freezer jars. Alternatively, if you have diced bits, store them in freezer-safe bags.
  2. Use a vacuum sealer to keep the container air-tight. You can also use a straw if you do not have a vacuum sealer. Leave just enough space for a straw to pass through and suck out as much air as possible. Then, remove the straw and completely seal the container.
  3. Label and date your containers before moving them to the freezer for storage.

How to Thaw Frozen Jalapenos

red and green jalapeno peppers on plate

If you use diced frozen jalapenos, cooking with them will thaw them. However, if you use whole or halved frozen jalapenos, you should thaw them beforehand. You can lay out the jalapenos on a paper towel and let them warm to room temperature. It should take a few minutes to be thawed and ready for use. Alternatively, you can defrost the jalapenos using cold water, a fridge, or a microwave!

Defrost Using Cold Water

If you want to thaw the jalapenos quickly, you can soak them in a bowl of cold water for a few minutes. Drain the jalapenos well before you use them.

Defrost in the Fridge

A common way to defrost frozen food is by moving it from the freezer to the fridge. Transfer your freezer bag of jalapenos from the freezer to the refrigerator and let it thaw overnight. In the morning, your jalapenos will be ready for use.

Defrost in the Microwave

Most microwaves have a defrost setting that can thaw your jalapenos. Place your jalapenos in a microwave-safe bowl or dish and set the timer for 3-5 minutes. Jalapenos are small, so oversee them as they thaw.

How to Use Frozen Jalapenos

jalapenos on salsa

You can use frozen jalapenos to add a bit of spice to your dishes, such as stir-fry and salsa. You can even use them to make jalapeno poppers! All you need to do is substitute the fresh jalapenos for frozen jalapenos in your favorite jalapeno popper recipe.

Frequently Asked Questions

group of jalapeno peppers

How Long Do Frozen Jalapenos Last?

Frozen jalapenos will maintain their quality for up to six months in the freezer. However, they remain edible for a year in the freezer.

Do You Have to Blanch Jalapenos Before Freezing?

Blanching is not a necessary step when it comes to freezing jalapenos. However, jalapenos blanched beforehand maintain their color and texture better.

Does Freezing Jalapenos Make Them Hotter?

Freezing jalapenos does not affect their spice level and does not make them any hotter than they already are at freezing.

Can You Freeze Whole Jalapenos?

You can freeze whole jalapenos, but you should still trim their tops and scoop their seeds out with a spoon. Ensure that you flash freeze them for a few hours before freezing them for the long term!

Can You Freeze Pickled Jalapenos?

You can store sealed pickled jalapenos for 3-4 months in the freezer. However, if it is unsealed and not immediately placed in the freezer, you risk food poisoning.

Conclusion

jalapeno peppers in wooden bowl

Freezing jalapenos is a quick and easy way of preserving your spicy jalapeno haul. So, the next time you are at the grocery and see fresh jalapenos, do not hesitate to pick up an extra batch for freezing!

If you enjoyed this guide on freezing jalapenos, you can also learn many other ways to preserve habanero peppers!

jalapeno pepper on wooden cutting board

Frozen Jalapeno Peppers

Jalapenos can give a spicy and crunchy kick to your meals, but it can be challenging to use all your fresh produce before it goes bad. Luckily, you can quickly freeze jalapenos when you do not have time to prep them immediately. Freeze them whole, cut up, or chopped depending on how you plan to use the jalapenos in the future!
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Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 3 hrs
Course Preparation
Servings 4
Calories 16 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 8 oz jalapeno peppers

Instructions
 

  • Start by washing your jalapenos in a vinegar solution. Prepare the solution by mixing three parts water and 1 part vinegar. Soak the jalapenos for a few minutes and then rinse them using freshwater.
  • Cut the top off your jalapenos and scoop out their seeds using a spoon.
  • Cut the jalapenos into the form you want to freeze them. You can keep them whole, halve them or even dice them.
  • Next, you can blanch them for a few minutes in some boiling water. While this step is not compulsory, it will give you a better result.
  • Flash freeze the jalapenos by spreading them out in a single layer on a parchment paper-lined baking tray for a few hours until they have frozen solid.
  • Lastly, transfer the frozen jalapenos to freezer-safe jars/containers and store them in the freezer until you are ready to use them!

Nutrition

Sodium: 2mgCalcium: 7mgVitamin C: 67mgVitamin A: 611IUSugar: 2gFiber: 2gPotassium: 141mgCalories: 16kcalMonounsaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gFat: 1gProtein: 1gCarbohydrates: 4gIron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
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