Plums are a favorite treat used in smoothies, and making jam is one of the best ways to extend the pleasure they bring into a year-round treat. The only issue they present is when they are in season, they come on like gangbusters and then just as quickly disappear from the market stalls.
If you are a true plum lover, you have probably asked yourself, how do I freeze plums for jam & smoothies after they go out of season. If you have, then we are here to help.
In this guide, we will explain:
- How to Freeze Plums for Making Jam Later (6 Steps)
- How to Freeze Plums for Smoothies (10 Steps)
- Should You Cook or Blanch Plums Before Freezing?
- Can You Freeze Plums with Pits?
- How Do You Thaw Frozen Plums
How to Freeze Plums for Making Jam Later (6 Easy Steps)
It is best to freeze plums whole if you want to use them for making jam later. Freezing the fruit intact prevents any freezer damage and helps to assure the fullest flavor from your plums after you thaw them.
Freezing Plums Whole
- Buy or gather the most perfectly ripe plums you can find. They must be fully mature because they will not ripen after freezing. If still green, leave them in a bowl on the counter for a few days. It is better for them to be slightly over-ripe than immature.
- Wash each plum individually under running water. Rub them gently with a soft cloth or your fingers to remove any debris or dust.
- Place your plums on a cooling rack or towel and allow them to dry completely.
- Fill freezer bags as full as possible with plums.
- Use a vacuum sealer or straw to remove as much air as possible from the bag and seal.
- Label your bagged plums and place them in the freezer.
How to Freeze Plums for Smoothies (10 Steps)
Most people find it more convenient to freeze sliced plums if they plan to use them in smoothies later. Sliced plums thaw faster or can be blended still frozen if you have a strong blender.
Freezing Sliced Plums
- Pick or buy the ripest plums you can find. It is better if they are slightly over-ripe than green as they will not ripen after freezing. If your plums are not fully mature, allow them to ripen at room temperature for a few days.
- Wash your plums under running water, rubbing them gently with your fingers or a soft cloth to remove any dirt or debris.
- Slice around your plums vertically and give them a gentle twist to separate the halves.
- Remove the pits from plums and slice them into wedges approximately 1 inch thick.
- Place your plum wedges on a baking sheet or shallow tray has been covered with plastic wrap or wax paper to prevent sticking. Be careful to space your wedges so that they do not touch or overlap.
- Place the baking sheet or tray in the freezer for an hour to an hour and a half.
- Remove your plums from the freeze. They should be very firm, if not completely frozen.
- Remove plums from trays and place them in freezer bags, filling the bags as completely as possible.
- Seal with a vacuum sealer or use a straw to remove as much air as possible and seal.
- Label your freezer bags and place them in the freezer.
Should You Cook or Blanch Plums Before Freezing?
You can blanch or cook your plums before freezing if you wish, but it is not mandatory. The exception to this is if you want to freeze peeled plums. Blanching is the easiest way to loosen the skin of the plum, making it easier to peel.
Can You Freeze Plums with Pits?
Yes, you can freeze plums with the pits. It is actually recommended that you freeze your plums whole if you plan to use them for cooking, making jam, or want to enjoy their juiciness later in the year
Plums frozen whole retain their succulent nature when thawed, and a half-frozen plum is a delightful treat during warm days.
How Do You Thaw Frozen Plums?
Thawing frozen plums requires no special steps. Plums that you froze sliced can simply be placed on the counter, and they will typically thaw in an hour or two.
You can do the same with plums frozen whole, or they can be placed in water to speed up the thawing process.