Freezing Green Tomatoes

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July 7, 2006
Green Tomatoes

Selecting High-Quality Tomatoes:

Freezing radically alters the texture of tomatoes, but they can still be used successfully in certain recipes after freezing. Select firm, undamaged green tomatoes.

Preparing for Freezing:

Wash, core, and slice in 1/4 or 1/2 -inch thick slices.

Best Freezing Methods(s):

  • For Frying: To freeze green tomatoes for frying, pack tomato slices into containers and separate them with wax paper or freezer wrap. Leave 1/2-inch headspace. Whole, Peeled or

  • Unpeeled Tomatoes: Wash and core tomatoes. If desired, dip tomatoes into boiling water for 30 seconds and plunge into cold water to easily remove skins. Place tomatoes on cookie sheets in freezer. Once frozen, transfer to plastic bags, seal, label and freeze.

  • Strained Puree or Juice: Wash, core and cut tomatoes into quarters. Puree in food processor or run through hand-cranked strainer. Pack in suitable containers, seal, label and freeze.

Suitable Packaging:

Freezer containers should be moisture and vapor resistant and should not be prone to cracking or breaking at low temperatures. Containers should provide protection against absorbing flavors or odors and should be easy to label. Suitable packaging for freezing green tomatoes includes freezer-grade plastic bags, rigid plastic containers or glass containers and heavy-duty aluminum foil.

Maximum Storage Time:

10 to 12 months at 0ºF.


Thaw tomatoes in the refrigerator or at room temperature in a bag or bowl to contain juices.

Tips & Shortcuts:

Transfer tomatoes for frying directly from the freezer right to the frying pan for cooking. Letting them thaw first results in a loss of quality (and a real mess!).

Refrigerating Green Tomatoes:

Tomatoes should not be stored at temperatures below 50º. Store them at room temperature, stems down, wrapped individually in newspaper or layered in a box with adequate air circulation. Store for 3 to 5 weeks.
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July 23, 2005

Don't waste all the green tomatoes left over at the end of the growing season. Wash and slice the tomatoes. Pour out some yellow cornmeal in a shallow dish.

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November 10, 2019

I have picked the last of my green tomatoes for the season and would like to freeze them to make chow chow later. Can I freeze them and how do I freeze them?

Thank you.


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November 11, 20190 found this helpful
Best Answer

Rinse them, dry off and freeze whole. When you are ready to cook take them out of the freezer and rinse under the faucet. The skins peel off. I just made sauce from tomatoes I froze.

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October 23, 2019

Can you grind up green tomatoes and freeze them to make relish later? I have several and don't have the time right now to make the relish I want to use them in.

I am hoping I can freeze them to use in a few weeks.


Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 140 Posts
October 23, 20190 found this helpful

You can freeze them,but keep in mind that they will longer be crunchy.They will be soft. Make sure when using freezer bags take the access air out of the bag before sealing!

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October 23, 20190 found this helpful

Freeze, absolutely! Remove the "core", slice, lay slices on wax paper on a cookie sheet, pop into the freezer, when frozen, put into a zipper bag (I double) stack in the freezer.


These work good to fry up, but I wouldn't use them in relish, but I have food texture issues and to me, they are not right for the relish. They are not quite as snappy as when fresh. I guess frying gives the snap back to them. Does that make sense?

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Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
October 23, 20190 found this helpful

Rinse the tomatoes and freeze whole. Then when you take them out rinse under the faucet and the skins will slip off. I did that this summer and made sauce when the weather cooled off.

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October 23, 20190 found this helpful

Freezing fruits and vegetables changes the texture because it breaks down the cell structure. If you use previously frozen green tomatoes for relish, the relish won't have a crispy texture.


Not only that, but it might seem watery, because ruptured plant cells release their water.

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October 24, 20191 found this helpful

That will be ok...the relish is cooked so it won't matter if its crunchy or not...thanks!!

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
October 26, 20190 found this helpful

There are several different ways to freeze green tomatoes. First off you can just put them in a zip log bag and freeze them whole. Second, you can cut the core out of them, slice them up, and freeze them on a cookie sheet then put in a zip lock bag. Just keep in mind the tomato has a lot of liquid in them and the texture will change after freezing.


If you want to make a relish with them the texture might not be the same as when they are fresh. Normally when I freeze tomatoes it is for frying or sauces.

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October 17, 2018

I just made a green tomato spice cake and wondered if I could freeze the 4 cups of diced tomatoes in bags to use in the cake later.


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October 17, 20180 found this helpful

Yes, you can do this.

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 196 Feedbacks
October 17, 20180 found this helpful

I only freeze them after blanching them. Freezing them unblanched always made them too watery for sauce. I would think it would mess with your cake batter unless you adjusted the liquid.


Please post your recipe! I adore a good spice cake and never heard of one with green tomatoes! Sounds amazing!!!

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August 9, 2011

Does anyone have experience with freezing green tomatoes? I would appreciate hearing your results. Thanks so much.

By Blanche Elliott S.

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