Freezing and Dehydrating Zucchini

This time of year, is the time of year that you might go to leave your home and find a long green vegetable at your door step. Zucchini plants seem to produce quite prolifically so chances are you are going to be offered some if you have a gardening friend or neighbor. Today I’m sharing how to store up the bounty you may grow or receive for the winter.

Zucchini Preserving

Freezing Zucchini

Zucchini for Freezer

Freezing zucchini is really quite easy. I prefer to shred the zucchini so it is ready for recipes after it thaws. This is great for those oh so big zucchini you might find in your garden or be given. If the zucchini is especially large, I like to cut it in half and then scoop out the seeds out of the middle and shred the rest. I leave the skin on but if you have any green-a-phobics at your house it might be best to peel them first. It’s easier to sneak it into a recipe that way. 🙂

Packing Zucchini for Freezer

Once shredded I package the zucchini up into 1 cup portions into sandwich sized bags, then place those bags into a gallon sized bag to help protect them from freezer burn. I find the 1 cup portions work the best for the recipes. It’s also a small enough amount so it will defrost more quickly too.

To use in a recipe just thaw and then drain off and extra liquid and proceed with the recipe just as you would use freshly grated zucchini.

Dehydrated Zucchini

Sliced Zucchini

To save on freezer space I have started dehydrating zucchini so I can store it in my pantry. I prepare the zucchini a couple of ways before I dry it. For soups and stews, I like to slice the smaller sized zucchini and dry. These work great to throw into the soup to add to the variety of vegetables that are in my winter soups. They plump up and usually stay in tact.

Zucchini slices dried

You can also add some garlic powder or garlic salt to the zucchini circles before you dehydrate them to make zucchini chips. I made these once, my family ate them but they weren’t a big hit like the kale chips. So I haven’t made them again. If your family loves zucchini you might give making zucchini chips a try. If they don’t like them you can always add them to soups or stews.

Dried Shredded Zucchini

For breads, muffins and generally adding zucchini into a recipe to pump up the nutrition value, I like to use dried shredded zucchini. To prepare the zucchini for the dehydrator I just shred and then measure out 4 cups onto each tray and dry. The shredded zucchini shrinks down so much after drying it can be hard to know how much to add to a recipe if you didn’t measure before hand.

Once its dried I place it into a bag and label with the amount of zucchini that is in each bag before it was dehydrated. So I know if my recipe calls for 2 cups of shredded zucchini and my dried zucchini bags says 4 cups, I know I need to use half the bag to have the correct amount. I don’t rehydrate the zucchini before adding it to baking recipes. I just add it dry and make sure to add a little extra liquid to the recipe. The zucchini will rehydrate while baking.

If you need shredded zucchini and all you have are dried zucchini coins, just break them up and use them instead.

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Looking for more gardening ideas? Head on over to the gardening page for more gardening ideas and inspiration. 

Zucchini Recipes

If you need a few zucchini recipes to use all the zucchini you are getting out of your garden or on your door step in here’s a few to try,

Vegan Zucchini Bread-From Vegan Homeschool

Zucchini Cupcakes

 

Zucchini Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting-From Hoosier Homemade

 

 

 

Chocolate-Zucchini-Cake Hoosier Homemade

 

 

Chocolate Zucchini Cake-From Hoosier Homemade

 

 

carrot-zucchini-bars-Fabulessly Frugal

 

 

Carrot Zucchini Bars with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting– From Fabulessly Frugal

 

 

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

 

 

Chocolate Zucchini Bread-From Frugal Family Home

 

 

Blueberry Zucchini Bread-Fabulessly Frugal

 

 

Blueberry Zucchini Bread-From Fabulessly Frugal

 

 

Zucchini-and-Garbanzo-Bean-Ragout-Recipe

Zucchini and Garbanzo Bean Ragout-From Living a Frugal Life

 

 

 

Zucchini-Pizza-Bites

Zucchini Pizza Bites-From Living a Frugal Life

 

 

 

 

This post is linked up at An Oregon Cottage

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8 thoughts on “Freezing and Dehydrating Zucchini”

  1. Good tip on measuring before dehydrating. I just put my first batch in the dehydrator and didn’t measure it first. Oops. I’ll know for next time!

  2. I made zucchini chips with spices, but also an infused oil and dried in dehydrator very slowly (under 115•), how long is that food viable, would you think?

    1. If the dried zucchini is vacuumed sealed it should last for a while. I’ve read up to 10 years if it is stored correctly and has a low moisture content. I have a little zucchini I’ve had in the cupboard for a year vacuum sealed and it still looks good. I hope that helps.

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