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Can You Freeze Cucumbers? yes, you can!

photo of cucumber infused water in glass

I was talking with a gardening friend and lamenting our dismal cucumber harvest this year. We have enough for eating fresh but not enough for freezing. She asked, “Can you freeze cucumbers?” Yes, you can absolutely freeze cucumbers and it’s super easy and useful. By the way, she’s bring me some of her excess cucumbers so I’ll have plenty of frozen cucumbers to last the year. I know you were worried about that.

Here’s the thing with freezing cucumbers, the texture will be different when they’re thawed. If you can accept that fact, you can successfully freeze cucumbers.

I’ve read of people pickling the cucumbers in either vinegar or brine and then freezing them submerged in the liquid. This doesn’t make any sense to me. It seems like a waste of freezer space. If you’re going to pickle cucumbers go ahead and water bath can them to make them shelf stable. If you’re going to use a brine to ferment cucumbers then store them in the refrigerator – they’ll last 6-12 months. Don’t waste valuable freezer space on frozen pickles.

But if you want the flavor of fresh cucumbers and don’t care about the texture, freeze them.

I like to keep track of all the things I preserve with these preservation worksheets. If you’d like a copy emailed to you, just fill out the form below.

photo of cucumber chunks in ice cube trays for freezing

How to freeze cucumbers

I freeze cucumbers two different ways. To prepare the cucumbers, wash and dry them. I use cucumbers that I grow or that I know are grown without pesticides so I don’t ever peel them. However, if you want peeled cucumbers, peel them before freezing them.

One way to freeze cucumbers is to slice them and put the cucumber slices on a baking the sheet lined with parchment paper. Pop the baking sheet into the freezer for a few hours. Put the frozen cucumber slices in a ziplock bag. Label the bag and put it back into the freezer.

Another way to freeze cucumbers is to use ice cube trays. Cube the cucumber and put the cubes into ice cube trays. Cover the cucumbers with water and put them in the freezer until the water is frozen. Once the cucumbers are frozen pop them out of the ice cube trays and put them in a ziplock bag. Label the bag and put it in the freezer.

photo of cucumber slices for freezing

How to use frozen cucumbers

Now that you know how to freeze cucumbers, how do you use frozen cucumbers? You can use frozen cucumbers in anything that you want the fresh cucumber flavor but texture doesn’t matter.

My favorite way to use frozen cucumbers is for infused water. Boring I know, but I love it. If you want a more exciting cucumber drink, you could try this cucumber mint martini.

Companies like the Frozen Garden sell frozen fruit-based water infusers, but those start at $5 per pack. I prefer to just spruce up my water with inexpensive produce from my own garden. 

We’re not really gazpacho people but I’ve only had plain gazpacho. I’ve never had tomato, strawberry, and basil gazpacho or anchovy gazpacho, both sound super interesting.

Tzatziki is a traditional Middle Eastern or Mediterranean dish. Its used on pita, as a dip, and on meat and vegetables. It’s quite expensive at the deli, but tzatziki can be made at home very inexpensively.

How to thaw frozen cucumbers

Cucumbers have high water content which means when they thaw, they’ll release a lot of liquid. If I’m putting cucumbers in water to infuse the water, I just plop the cucumber ice cubes or frozen cucumber slices into the water and let them thaw in the water.

If you’re going to make tzatziki or gazpacho, put the frozen cucumbers in a bowl in the refrigerator or counter to thaw. This will keep all the yummy liquid together so you can use it in your recipe.

So don’t let an abundant harvest overwhelm you, freeze cucumbers to use throughout the year. Do you freeze cucumbers? If so, what do you use them for?

photo of glass with cucumber infused water

Frozen cucumber treats

Another way to freeze cucumbers is to make cucumber lime sorbet. I like to make this when I have overgrown cucumbers that need to be used up.

Thanks for sharing with your friends!

Colette Tiarks

Saturday 28th of August 2021

I just made cucumber bread. A zucchini bread recipe but I used cucumbers instead. Tastes pretty good. Wondering if I used frozen cucumbers if it would change the bread?

Angi Schneider

Monday 13th of September 2021

oh, that sounds tasty!! I would think that you might need to leave out some of the water that gets released when they thaw out. I don't when I use zucchini but cucumbers are more watery.

Rita

Wednesday 25th of August 2021

Went to make my pickle relish and found out my stove was broken! Can I grind cucumbers and onions and peppers and freeze until I’m able to get my stove fixed and then I can cook and water bath?

Angi Schneider

Friday 27th of August 2021

Unfortunately, the cucumbers will be mushy after being frozen. So that really won't work. I'm sorry.

Jeannie

Friday 13th of August 2021

If I a going to use them to make tzatziki could I shred them before freezing? I am worried about trying to shred them after thawing.

Angi Schneider

Saturday 21st of August 2021

Absolutely!

Jen Keith

Saturday 29th of May 2021

Wow, you guys are awesome with all of the cucumber ideas! I’m lazy, I just cut big chunks, freeze em and use them as infusing ice cubes. Great article and so fun to read all of the posts.

Wilma Travaille

Saturday 19th of September 2020

I have used hot jars and brine and warm lids and put rings on and they will seal most of the time. I don’t water bath because I like them crispy. I know they don’t recommend this but really they fermented pickles in vinegar and salt brine right in a crock and nobody got sick. If they don’t seal you may have one that doesn’t put in fridge for a few weeks.. If sealed put on shelf. Always check your seal before eating and smell them. Should be fine.

Angi Schneider

Saturday 19th of September 2020

If that works for you, that's fine but not water bath canning vinegar brined pickles is not a recommended method for making shelf stable pickles. You really can't make a comparison between traditionally fermented pickles and vinegar pickles - they are two totally different methods. With traditionally fermented pickles you create an environment where beneficial bacteria can thrive and other bacteria, such as Clostridium botulinum, cannot. With vinegar pickles the goal is to have no bacteria. Also, fermented pickles are not shelf stable and need to be kept in a cool place (like a refrigerator or root cellar) in order to slow the fermentation process down. If they are kept in a warm environment, they will continue to ferment. While this isn't necessarily a bad thing, the cucumbers will get softer over time. My point is you can't say that because fermented pickles aren't water bath canned, vinegar pickles don't need to be. Of course, in your kitchen you can do whatever you want. But on my site, I only share recommended ways of preserving food.