Mint is one of the most versatile ingredients in the kitchen. But most people wonder if they can freeze mint leaves to make them last longer. So, in this article we will show you how to do it.
This herb can be used in cooking, drinks, baking and where else your imagination wants to. Mint gives everything a fresh taste and smell.
And it is very simple to freeze it, in fact, there are more than one way to freeze mint leaves to increase its shelf-life.
Make sure to prepare them correctly, by cleaning with running water and patting it gently with a paper towel to remove the water excess – you can also leave them to dry in the air – but they need to be clean and completely dry to be frozen.
Mint leaves are very delicate and be bruised if you do not handle them with care, and after they are clean and dry, you can start the freezing process.
How to freeze mint leaves
How to freeze mint leaves in water
By freezing the mint leaves in water, you will preserve the green and vibrant color and will extend the fresh taste of it and they will last for several months.
After preparing the mint leaves as mentioned above, you can chop them or leave them whole – or do both, just consider for what you will use the mint leaves for. Grab an ice cube tray, place the mint leaves in each section and repeat until the whole tray is filled with them. Then, pour filtered water into the sections, but do not fill it or the mint leaves will float.
After filling the ice cube tray with the leaves and the water you can take it to the freezer and wait for it to freeze until solid.
After everything is solid you can take the ice cube mints out, store them in a plastic bag or other freezable compartment, squeeze all the air out and move it back to the freezer.
Do not let the mint leaves in the ice cube tray or they will absorb all the freezer tastes and flavors, which will basically ruin your mint leaves, especially if you want to use it to make drinks.
How to flash freeze mint leaves
If you do not intend to store the frozen mint leaves for a long time, flash freezing it can be a great solution.
Follow the steps to clean and dry the mint leaves, spread them on a tray or baking sheet – but make sure to spread the mint leaves very well in a way they do not touch each other, or you will not be able to separate it later without breaking or bruising the leaves – store the baking sheet in the freezer and after two or three hours the mint leaves will be frozen and you can add them in plastic bags or other airtight compartment.
Write down the date you bought and froze the mint leaves to track down the time and avoid any wastes. They will for sure last for several months, but if you see that there was a color or texture change, do not consume it.
How to freeze mint leaves in oil
Freezing the mint leaves in oil will be the best solution if you want to use them later in hot recipes, like soups, sauces, beans, etc. since the taste and freshness will be conserved by the olive oil.
If the help of a food processor, add the clean and dry mint leaves in it and together add ¼ cup of olive oil and blend it until they mix.
Pour the blended mint leaves and olive oil into an ice cube tray and place it in the freezer. After the oil and mint leaves cubes are solid, you can move them to a plastic bag or airtight compartment and store it in the freezer.
Then, whenever you need to add the mint leaves in a recipe you can take them straight out of the ice cube tray and the heat of will melt the ice, leaving the mint leave and the oil.
Tips on the mint leaves freezing
There is no need actually defrost or thaw the mint leaves. If you are going to use them in a drink, you can add them directly in the ice cube shape. If you will add the mint leaves in a recipe, just take them straight from the freezer and mix with the other ingredients.
The frozen fresh mint leaves can be kept in the freezer for around 3 months, but if you clean and dry them as explained above in this article, they can last for around 6 months.
If where you live you cannot find mint leaves all year round and want to make them last longer, it is totally possible to freeze mint leaves. By cleaning and drying them well, you will have this fresh and versatile herb up to 6 months.
Frozen mint leaves freeze very well in any of the methods you choose, and they will keep the normal color, flavor, and nutritional values. So, nothing to worry about it!
You will have to be careful when cleaning and drying it and when adding it to your drinks or recipes, since the mint leaves are very fragile and thin. Which may cause some breaks or bruises.
But the thin leaves are also the reason why it is so easy to freeze and defrost later. Actually, you do not even need to defrost them. The mint leaves can be included in whatever you need them with no need to thaw or defrost.
The article above brought the best tips and recommendations on how to freeze mint leaves and how to better preserve them for many months. If you have any other method of doing it, please let us know! And, if you used any of the tips tell us if they were helpful.