The Proper Way To Freeze Bok Choy


Bok choy, along with other variations of leafy cabbage, can be found in most grocery stores. If you bought too much or bought the vegetables ahead of time, you’ll want to keep them as long as possible. Therefore, you might ask, can bok choy be frozen?

Bok Choy can be frozen and stored in the freezer up to 12 months. It can be frozen by blanching, without blanching, raw or cooked. The frozen bok choy should be stored in plastic freezer bags with the excess air removed.

This article will explain how to freeze bok choy in whichever method you choose. I’ll detail the proper way using easy step-by-step directions.

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How To Freeze Fresh Bok Choy

This first method is the proper way to freeze fresh Bok Choy using the blanching method. Therefore, how do you freeze fresh Bok Choy?

The best way to freeze fresh Bok Choy:

  1. Trim the Bok Choy by cutting the ends of the stems.
  2. Chop the leaves to the desired size.
  3. Rinse the leaves under cold running water.
  4. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  5. While waiting for the water to boil, fill a large bowl with water and ice cubes.
  6. Add the Bok Choy to the boiling water.
  7. Boil them for 2 minutes.
  8. Immediately remove them from the boiling water and place them into the ice water for 2 minutes.
  9. Drain and place them onto a paper towel and pat them dry.
  10. Place the dried Bok Choy onto a parchment covered baking sheet. Ensure they’re not touching each other.
  11. Place the baking sheet into the freezer until the Bok Choy are fully frozen.
  12. Remove the baking sheet and transfer the frozen leaves into plastic freezer bags.
  13. Remove as much excess air as possible and seal the freezer bag.
  14. Date the bag and store in the freezer up to twelve months.

By spacing them apart on the baking sheet prevents them from sticking together when frozen. This allows you to remove the leaves individually from the freezer bag instead of having them frozen in one large chunk 1.

Sealing

Removing as much air as possible from the freezer bag is important and helps prevent freezer burn.

The best way to remove excess air from the plastic freezer bag is to use a vacuum sealer. They are one of those items making you wonder how you did without one before purchasing it. Amazon has many affordable ones. Check out their current prices here, Vacuum Sealers.

Without a sealer, close the top of the bag leaving a small opening to fit a straw through. Suck the excess air out of the plastic bag and quickly close the top after removing the straw.

What Is Blanching?

Blanching is the process of quickly submerging vegetables in hot water, then chilling them in ice water before freezing. The rapid cooking followed by immediate cooling slows or ceases a specific enzyme activity in the vegetables, making them better suited for the freezer.

Does Bok Choy Need To Be Blanched Before Freezing?

Bok Choy should be blanched before freezing because it reduces enzyme activity and increases the freshness and longevity of the vegetable in the freezer. 

There is contention around whether bok choy ought to be blanched before freezing. However, many established chefs agree it is beneficial at least in extending the longevity of the vegetable 2.

Other home chefs believe freezing bok choy without blanching reduces the risk of the leaves turning soft or decaying during the freeze. Both methods have their pros and cons 3.

Therefore, it’s up to each chef to make the right choice based on their own circumstances and when they plan to use the bok choy next 4.

How about regular cooked cabbage, does it require the same methods as Bok Choy? Find out in my article, How To Freeze Cooked Cabbage.

Bok Choy is an above ground vegetable making them good for a low-carb diet like Keto.

If you’re eating low-carb or want to give keto a try, many of my clients have followed this 28-Day Keto Challenge with great success. Visit their website and check it out.

How Long Does Bok Choy Last in the Freezer?

If unprepared, bok choy has an incredibly short shelf life. Raw bok choy only lasts 3-4 days in a standard refrigerator 5. Therefore, how long does Bok Choy last in the freezer?

Both Choy can last up to 12 months in the freezer when following the proper freezing procedure. The Bok Choy should be blanched and stored in freezer bags without any excess air.

If you’re interested learning about the best way to Store Bok Choy in the refrigerator, check out my article, How To Store Bok Choy.

Freezing Bok Choy Without Blanching

As mentioned earlier, some people would rather freeze Bok Choy without blanching. Therefore, let’s answer the question, how to freeze Bok Choy without blanching?

The best way to freeze Bok Choy without blanching:

  1. Trim the Bok Choy by cutting the ends of the stems.
  2. Chop the leaves to the desired size.
  3. Clean the leaves by wiping them with a moist towel.
  4. Place them onto a paper towel and allow them to dry.
  5. Place the dried Bok Choy onto a parchment covered baking sheet. Ensure they’re not touching each other.
  6. Place the baking sheet into the freezer until the Bok Choy are fully frozen.
  7. Remove the baking sheet and transfer the frozen leaves into plastic freezer bags.
  8. Remove as much excess air as possible and seal the freezer bag.
  9. Date the bag and store in the freezer up to twelve months.

Freezing Individual Servings

Some people like to store individual servings into separate bags. Place a serving amount of Bok Choy in a bag and remove as much air as possible to preserve them better and prevent freezer burn.

If possible, use a smaller package for freezing improving the quality and longevity of storage. Keep the plastic bags as level as possible while they’re freezing. After they’re frozen, they can be moved around and reoriented to fit conveniently in the freezer.

This method allows you to take however many Bok Choy you need without worrying about letting air into the bag. The package-freeze method allows you to portion out your serving sizes ahead of time, so you aren’t defrosting too many leaves that end up going to waste.

Freezing Bok Choy After Cooking

There are times too much Bok Choy was cooked and you don’t want to throw them away or eat them in the next few days. In addition, some people want to cook them first before freezing them. In this situation you’ll ask, can you freeze cooked Bok Choy?

Cooked Bok Choy can be frozen. They don’t require blanching due to the previous cooking process already slowed the enzyme action. Cooked Bok Choy can be stored in plastic freezer bags and frozen up to twelve months.

The best way to freeze cooked Bok Choy:

  1. Allow the Bok Choy to completely cool.
  2. Place the cooled leaves into plastic freezer bags or an airtight container.
  3. Remove as much excess air as possible.
  4. Date the bag and place it into the freezer up to 12 months.

Ensure the Bok Choy are completely cool. Placing them into the bag while warm or hot can cause steam to escape into the bag. This will expose them to a freezer burn or spoilage quicker 6.

If there are sauces or other items involved, you may want to store them separately. If the ingredients can’t be separated, research the storage recommendations for the other items 7.

How To Defrost Frozen Bok Choy?

The best way to defrost frozen Bok Choy is to transfer them from the freezer to the refrigerator until they are defrosted. The amount of time will vary depending if the leaves were frozen separated or bunched together. 

Although they shouldn’t take too long, if you don’t have enough time, they can be placed onto the counter to defrost. Can you cook Bok Choy from frozen?

Bok Choy can be cooked frozen if the leaves were frozen separated. The Bok Choy leaves can be added directly to the dish being cooked.

This method works particularly good when adding the frozen Bok Choy to soups, stews or a stir-fry 8.

FAQs

Should you wash Bok Choy before freezing? Bok Choy should be washed before freezing. If blanching, rinse the Bok Choy under cold running water. If freezing without blanching, wipe the Bok Choy leaves with a moist towel. 

Can I cut and freeze Bok Choy? Bok Choy can be cut to the size desired prior to freezing. The leaves should be cut just prior to the blanching step of the freezing process.

Can you freeze Bok Choy soup? Bok Choy soup can be frozen. Allow the soup to cool down and then transfer it to a freezer safe container leaving an inch of headspace at the top to allow for expansion. Remove as much excess air as possible and seal the container with an airtight lid. Date the container and store in the freezer up to 5 months.

Read Next – More Food Storage Articles!

Your Guide To Freezing Brussels Sprouts

A Guide To Preserve Fresh Cherries – The 5 Best Ways

A Guide To Storing Toasted Bread

The Shelf Life Of Clementines And How To Store Them

 

Article Resources: Foods For Anti-Aging follows strict guidelines to ensure our content is the highest journalistic standard. It's our mission to provide the reader with accurate, honest and unbiased guidance. Our content relies on medical associations, research institutions, government agencies and study resources. Learn more by reading our editorial policy.
  1. New Entry Sustainable Farming Project: Bok Choy[]
  2. University of Purdue: Bok Choy[]
  3. University of Massachusetts Amherst: Bok Choy[]
  4. National Center for Home food Preservation: Freezing Cabbage or Chinese Cabbage[]
  5. Glad: Bok Choy[]
  6. Michigan State University: Michigan Fresh: Using, Storing, and Preserving Cabbage[]
  7. Purdue University Extension: Bok Choy[]
  8. Michigan State University: Cabbage and Chinese cabbage storage and preserving tips[]

Kevin Garce

Kevin Garce is a Certified Health Coach who encourages people by informing them on nutrition and food topics important to them. His years of research and knowledge inspire people to achieve their goals. Read more here About Me

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