How To Freeze Cauliflower
Want to freeze fresh cauliflower? It’s easy! I’ll show you how to freeze cauliflower so that you can instantly use the florets in cooking (and save time).
Cauliflower is an incredibly versatile vegetable and is a staple ingredient in healthy (and low-carb) recipes. Plus, it’s a superfood loaded with Vitamin C, Vitamin B-6, antioxidants, and fiber. I personally love how the flavor and texture transforms when cooked in different ways, from simply roasting cauliflower with spices or blending it into cauliflower rice.
But if you have a head of cauliflower, either fresh from your garden or sitting in your fridge, you can easily freeze it for future use. I’ll walk you through the process step-by-step.
How to Freeze Cauliflower
Want to see how I freeze zucchini? Watch the video below!
Here’s the step-by-step process for freezing it:
- Prep the cauliflower by washing the head and removing and dirt or debris.
- Cut the head of cauliflower in half, then into quarters. Remove the florets from the core and break them apart by hand or cut into smaller pieces with your knife.
- Begin the blanching process by bringing a large pot of water to a boil and then adding the cauliflower. Blanch for just 1-2 minutes.
- Create an ice bath by adding water and ice into a large bowl. Scoop the cauliflower from the pot with a skimmer and transfer it into the ice bath. Let it chill for about 2 minutes.
- Drain the cauliflower and pat the florets dry to remove any extra moisture.
- Pre-freeze the florets by spreading the cauliflower in a single layer on a baking sheet. Freeze for 1-2 hours.
- Toss the frozen cauliflower into freezer bags and store it for several months! I like to use these reusable silicone bags for storage.
Is Blanching Necessary?
It’s not necessary, but it’s recommended. Blanching not only ensure you’ve killed any lurking bacteria, but it also preserves the quality and flavor. This is particularly important if you plan to freeze longer than a month or two.
How to Use Frozen Cauliflower
Frozen cauliflower makes recipes a breeze, because it doesn’t need to cook for very long. The blanching process makes the frozen cauliflower softer than raw cauliflower (once it’s thawed), but remember that it’s still not cooked through. Just quickly saute, boil or steam it and you’re good to go!
Even better – toss it into a smoothie! Frozen cauliflower is perfect for smoothies. It’s a sneaky vegetable that’s virtually undetectable and adds a bit of creaminess to your favorite smoothie.
More Cauliflower Recipes and Ideas
- Cauliflower Fried Rice
- Roasted Cauliflower Hummus
- Mashed Cauliflower with Garlic and Herbs
- Za’atar Roasted Cauliflower
- Cauliflower Rice Tabbouleh
Plus, there’s more ingredients you can freeze! Here’s my tips for how to freeze cauliflower and how to freeze bananas.
How To Freeze Cauliflower
- 1 head of cauliflower
- 1 large pot boiling water
- 1 large bowl ice water
- Wash the cauliflower and cut it in half, then quarters. Remove the florets and cut them into smaller pieces (if necessary).
- Begin the blanching process. Bring a large pot of water to boil and add the cauliflower. Let it simmer for about 1-2 minutes then remove from the pot using a slotted spoon or skimmer.
- Transfer the cauliflower immediately to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process and let it chill for about 2 minutes.
- Drain the cauliflower and gently pat the florets dry to remove any extra moisture.
- Spread the cauliflower across a baking sheet and freeze for 1-2 hours.
- Transfer the frozen cauliflower to freezer bags or containers and freeze for several months.
- The stand up Stasher Bags (silicone storage bags) are my favorite for storing frozen cauliflower as you can fit more in them than the regular sandwich bags.
Love these tips
Glad they were helpful Chris!
Lisa love your recipes cant wait to try your low fat smoothies
Would it be okay to use the frozen cauliflower from the freezer section at ref grocery store? I want to be sure it’s safe for smoothies
Yep, that’s fine for smoothies!
Thanks for the recipe
as a senior male single I use a lot of frozen vegs
This totally works! Thank you so much Lisa for making our making our lives easier.
I have two questions:
1. After ice bath do you have to dry the cauliflower before freezing it?
2. How to thaw it quickly for baking recipes?
Hi Shanaya- Yes! You must dry the cauliflower so it doesn’t absorb too much moisture as its freezing. And secondly, the best way to thaw is to let it sit in the fridge overnight.
Why bother showing the Nutrition Facts for Cauliflower if you do not show the Serving Size?
Hi Kay – There are 4 servings in this recipe- so however much your cauliflower divides into 4 parts.
Thank you for this method. One quick question, how do you treat the pre-frozen product for making cauliflower rice? I need to teach my mom how to do this especially since she will be restricted from going out to the supermarket. Also I would like to know for myself as well.
Thanks in advance.
Hi Charmaine – Great question! You can actually refer to my Cauliflower Pizza Crust post to see instructions on how to turn frozen florets into cauliflower rice.
My husband doesn’t like most veggies but since I got my new Vitamix over the holidays, I added this cauliflower with a ton of spinach to OUR smoothie this morning and he loves it! I never thought about cauliflower in a smoothie.
I forgot to 5 star the recipe!!
Hi Lisa – I’m so glad your husband loved the idea of cauliflower in his smoothie! It really is the perfect way to sneak in some veggies :)
In my whole life I was not thinking about adding veg in my smoothies!! After being inspired by you, I tried to add cauliflower gradullay and it was awesome!!! It just make the smothie creamy without thinking there is vege there
Hi there – Glad my tips helped, especially with making a smoothie :)
I never quite use cauliflower as quickly as I intend to and I hate to waste it. Freezing it is an excellent idea and your instructions make the process so easy.
Hi Vicky – I’m glad you found this post helpful!
Love this, Lisa! I blanch my cauliflower before freezing it as well – I feel so much better adding it to my dishes and smoothies later!
Hi Sapana – I agree! Blanching it before makes the texture and consistency much smoother.
Yay! Knowing how to freeze cauliflower is so important to make the most of it! Thanks for sharing :)
Hi Traci – freezing cauliflower is beneficial for so many recipes :)
Great tips on freezing cauliflower. I see this would work for other veggies too! :)
Hi Patty – most definitely!
This was such a helpful post. I’ve never had luck with freezing cauliflower because it gets mushy on me when I defrost it but I didn’t realize I had to cook it before hand and the pre-freeze is a great tip! Thank you SO much!
Hi Catherine – I’m glad you found this post helpful!