How to Freeze Zucchini


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If you’ve got an abundance of zucchini in your garden, don’t let it go to waste. Freeze it! Today, I’m showing you how to freeze zucchini so that you can enjoy it all year round.

Frozen zucchini slices on a plate.

Zucchini is one of my go-to ingredients because the recipe variations are endless. You can bake it into bread, spiralize it into noodles, sauté it for a side dish, or stuff it. It’s amazingly versatile. Do you see why I’m such a fan?

Zucchini is a great low-carb, hydrating vegetable which makes it perfect for light summer meals. But if you grow it in your garden, you know that you can sometimes end up more than you can eat. And of course, you don’t want it to go to waste.

That’s when you should freeze it! Let me show you how easy it is.

How to Freeze Zucchini

First, think of how you might use the zucchini in the future. I’m slicing the zucchini, which is perfect for soups, casseroles, sauces and smoothies. If you plan on making zucchini bread or other baked goods, you’ll want to grate it instead of slice it (and steam it rather than blanch it).

Want to see how I freeze zucchini? Watch the video below!

Here’s the step-by-step process for freezing it:

  1. Thoroughly wash the outside of the zucchini to get rid of any dirt and debris.
  2. Prepare and cut the zucchini by washing it and cutting it into 1/4 inch thick slices.
  3. Blanch the zucchini to deactivate the enzymes which prevents it from becoming discolored and mushy. Do this by adding the zucchini to a pot of boiling water for one minute. Side note, do not add salt! Then, use a skimmer or slotted spoon to transfer the zucchini to an ice water bath.
  4. Make an ice water bath by filling a large bowl with water and ice and let the zucchini sit in the bath for about 2 minutes.
  5. Drain the zucchini from the ice water bath and gently pat the zucchini with a paper towel to blot it dry.
  6. Pre-freeze the zucchini by laying the slices out on a tray using a baking sheet. Place it in the freezer for 1-2 hours, or until it’s frozen. This ensure you don’t end up with one big clump of frozen zucchini.Frozen zucchini on a baking tray
  7. Package your zucchini in freezer bags and store it away for up to one year! I like to use Stasher Bags, but you could use any freezer safe storage container.

Using Frozen Zucchini 

Because zucchini is 95% water, it can become quite soft after you freeze and thaw it. A little puddle of water may surround it. Therefore, it’s best used in soups, casseroles, sauces and smoothies.

In fact, it’s a great way to sneak more veggies into a smoothie (it’ll go virtually undetected!). That’s what I do with it most often and it’s a great alternative to bananas, for a low sugar smoothie.

I wouldn’t recommend it as a stand-alone side dish or used in salads or stir-fries as it’ll be too watery.

More Zucchini Recipes to Enjoy

You can’t go wrong with any of these tasty zucchini recipes!

Want to know more ingredients you can freeze? Check out my tips for how to freeze cauliflower and how to freeze bananas.

Frozen zucchini slices on a plate.

How to freeze zucchini

5 from 15 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 2 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


If you've got an abundance of zucchini in your garden, don't let it go to waste. Freeze it! Today, I'm showing you how to freeze zucchini so that you can enjoy it all year round.



  • 2 zucchini
  • 1 large pot boiling water
  • 1 large bowl ice water


  • Wash the zucchini and cut them into 1/4 inch thick slices.
  • Blanch the zucchini by first filling a large pot about 2/3 full with water. Bring the water to a full boil and toss in the zucchini.
  • Let the zucchini cook for just one minute. Side note, do not add any salt as this will cause it to become mushy before freezing!
  • Remove the zucchini from the water with a slotted spoon or skimmer and transfer to an ice water bath.
  • Let the zucchini chill for 2 minutes in the ice water bath, then drain.
  • Blot the zucchini dry with a paper towel and place on a baking sheet and place in the freezer.
  • Freeze the zucchini for 1-2 hours. Once they're frozen, transfer them to a freezer safe storage bag and freeze for several months.

Lisa's Tips

  • To avoid freezer burn, it's best to use your frozen zucchini within 6 months. 


Calories: 17kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 8mg | Potassium: 256mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 196IU | Vitamin C: 18mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: frozen zucchini, How to freeze zucchini
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

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About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating


  1. My daughter grew zuchinni this year and we typically only use it in breads. Most are 3 to 4 inch in diameter. Big. How do I freeze shredded zuchinni and in recipe size containers. Also the smoothie idea is great.

    1. Make sure to remove as much moisture from the zucchini before freezing in a bag or container! Just note that the zucchini won’t hold its shape as well after defrosting.

  2. I have two questions.
    1. Do you follow these same steps with grated zucchini?
    2. Can you use it for baking if it’s too watery because it’s frozen?

    Thank you!

      1. You can freeze grated zucchini for recipes. I have been doing it for 20+ years. Grate zucchini and measure out what is needed for recipes such as zucchini bread. Place in zip locks and freeze. Thaw overnight and drain before using. I have successfully used 2 year old grated zucchini in zucchini bread… no change in taste or texture of bread.

  3. Do you think sliced zucchini would be too water to bake on a sheet pan after freezing? My husband and I love making sheet pan veggies, but I’m not sure how the moisture would do in the baking process.

  4. Have you frozen zucchini noodles? I am hoping to sauté it in olive oil, sprinkle with Italian seasoning, then freeze for use at a later date topped with nomato sauce. What do you think, will it work?

    1. I freeze zucchini noodles!  They take a little less time to cook than fresh zoodles, but are just as tasty.  I spiralize the zucchini, make 1/2 serving sized nests, and freeze them as above on a sheet pan.  Once frozen, I put two or four in a vacuum seal bag and re freeze them.

      I cook my zoodles, in a large skillet with an inch of boiling water, for 4 minutes, flip them around with a pair of tongs and cook for another 3-4 minutes.

  5. Can you use the Instant Pot to blanch Zucchini or would it cook it too much. Mine always overcooks veggies.

    Instructions for using IP?

    1. Hi Joyce – unfortunately, I don’t use an Instant Pot very often, so I’m not much help. Though I hope to use it more this fall!

  6. I will be trying the method, since the zucchini is starting to produce rapidly in my garden.
    However, your description recommends Stasher Bags, and the link takes you to Amazon, where you can buy ONE 1/2-gallon bag for $19.99 (if you have prime and get free shipping). I will stick with ziploc or something similar.5 stars

  7. I don’t boil my zucchini but this recipe encouraged me to slice up fresh zucchini, lay them on a baking sheet with parchment paper, freeze them overnight, and then put a few slices in my smoothie every day. I’m sneaking in just a little bit more veggies every day because of this so I am thankful! Also, my husband is allergic to banana and I make him a smoothie using zucchini and add just a bit more maple syrup and he’s able to enjoy a creamy treat, too. Thank you, Lisa!5 stars

    1. Hi Maribel – I’m glad I can provide a new way to use up your zucchini! It really is such a great addition to smoothies in the morning :)

  8. Hi Lisa. I’m not a vegie lover, so I went for the idea of sneaking vegies into my smoothie. I bought some zucchini and just blanched it per your instructions. I wondered about something though. After I dumped the raw zucchini into the boiling water, the water stopped boiling for almost 5 minutes. Should I let the water come back to a boil before starting to time for one minute?

    1. Hi Teresa- You should just leave the zucchini slices in the boiling water for a minute, then remove. Do not leave it in there for more than one minute!

  9. I bought a vegetable sheet cutter after seeing it on your site. And this weekend I finally find decent sized zucchinis! But can I freeze the sheets to make lasagna, etc.? I just don’t want it to go bad before I get around to using it! Do I blanche it first?

    1. Hi Kim – congrats on your purchase! Unfortunately, you can’t freeze sheets of zucchini. They become a bit mushy when thawed, so are best to make fresh.

  10. I tried this and it is a great hack! Doesn’t taste at all and adds a nice creaminess without adding any sugar. I add a couple of pieces with half a banana since i am cutting down on sugar. Plus they are really easy to make.5 stars

  11. Genius hack!! Never thought of it but now I freeze random veggies all the time (especially when they’re about to go bad). I even started throwing the zucchini into smoothies and you really cannot tell!5 stars

  12. I love delicata squash and it’s really only available at this time. Would I be able to do the same thing with it as you’ve done with the zucchini? And would you blanch it or just freeze?

    1. Hi Debbie – Yes! You can apply the same method. You might not need to blanch it too much since squash isn’t as watery as zucchini.

  13. Thank you for this. Coincidentally this is what I’m doing today. I have so much zucchini from my garden. I’m going to slice them, shred them and pickle them. Do you have a recipe for zuchini cakes?5 stars

  14. Such great information to know – especially if you have a garden! Our zucchini goes crazy but I never think to freeze it! Thanks for this tutorial!5 stars

    1. Hi Lauren – I’m glad you found the helpful! Zucchini season is definitely sprouting so it’s always good to find a way to store leftovers :)

    1. Hi Noelle – I’m so glad you you found this informative! Hope this helps speed up your cooking time and give you ideas on different recipes :)

  15. I love this! Super informative! I’ve been needing to know how to keep zucchini for much longer! Thanks for sharing!5 stars

  16. I never even thought of freezing zucchini before! I didn’t know it could be done! Thanks so much for the tips!5 stars

    1. Hi Michelle – Many vegetables can be frozen, but zucchini is definitely on the top of my list as it can be made into many dishes as well as blended into a smoothie :)