Freezing whole lemons

beachlily z9aJanuary 9, 2010

We are in the grasp of a strong cold front down here in FL. I picked 25 lb. of lemons off my myers lemon tree so they wouldn't freeze. I read that some people have frozen oranges whole and I wonder how that is done. Can I free whole lemons? Thanks! Stay warm!

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I freeze them all the time. A frozen lemon is much easier to grate for zest. And once they are defrosted they are much easier to juice, as well.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2010 at 10:09PM
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I've heard of it being done when the end use was for juice. Never tried it, though. Wonder if it would work for oranges to be eaten rather than juiced or if the texture would go all weird?

    Bookmark   January 9, 2010 at 10:29PM
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I freeze them all the time. I nuke one at a time in the micro for 1 minute and its perfect (if its a big one, it may have to sit for a few minutes after the 1 minute nuking).

Bean, I have a feeling the texture of an orange would be okay - don't know for sure - but you should try one. I only use the frozen lemons for juicing in recipes and I haven't really sliced one to see what its like, but when I cut it in half to juice it, it looks just perfect, like a lemon should look.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2010 at 11:00PM
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I have 3 in the freezer right now. Don't know if it's necessary, but I just wrap them up in aluminum foil. Lemons, limes and oranges.

I went back to the Harvest forum notes I'd taken. Good info on things that freeze.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2010 at 11:22PM
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beachlily z9a

Thanks for the information, everyone! My bigger lemons are weighing in at about 3/4 lb. so I know I can't freeze bunches. Guess at least make a lemon loaf today. Maybe a couple of them!

    Bookmark   January 10, 2010 at 8:32AM
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Thanks all, I never thought of freezing lemons. I thought they would go all mushy. We do not live anywhere near where citrus is grown, but when Costco has a great price on a bag of lemons or limes, I never buy them as I would never be able to use them up. Now I will.


    Bookmark   January 10, 2010 at 1:37PM
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I agree this is great to hear... Does the juice have the same freshness when you eventually juice them? As long is it doesn't come out tasting like that lemon juice from concentrate, I'm definitely going to give this a try the next time I see a sale on a bag of lemons!

    Bookmark   January 10, 2010 at 4:57PM
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dale, they do get softer. That's what makes them so easy to juice after they've been frozen. And you get much more juice out of them, that way too.

fearless, I think the juice is a little bit more mellow after being frozen but it doesn't taste anything like the stuff in a bottle.

I wash them really well, let dry, and drop them whole into a freezer bag.

beachlily, if you have lots you could always juice the lemons fresh and just freeze the juice.

I'm really craving a nice glass of lemonaide right now. I think I'll go defrost a couple.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2010 at 5:38PM
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beachlily z9a

Boy, I really need more juice! I've got 20 lb. of these lemons! Thanks everyone! I am going to bag and freeze some of the smaller ones. I also have an older bag of lemon in the frig. Meyers lemon trees do produce! It hasn't been damaged in the freezing temperatures we had either! Can't say it too loudly, tonight will be plenty cold!

    Bookmark   January 10, 2010 at 8:37PM
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This is great to know. I never knew you could freeze whole citrus. I'll be doing that from now on. I always have a couple of limes and lemons in the fruit bowl that I end up having to throw away -


    Bookmark   January 10, 2010 at 9:25PM
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I've never frozen whole ones but I always buy a lot at time, lemons or limes, then juice them and freeze the juice in ice cube trays. It's a lot of work at once but then when I need juice it's there waiting for me.

I've also started zesting them first and freezing the zest. Works great. Both the frozen juice and zest are pretty much as good as fresh IMO.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2010 at 1:45PM
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I don't have room in my freezer to freeze them whole. I always buy Meyer Lemons when they're in season though, and freeze the zest; the juice in ice cube trays. (One cube is 2 tablespoons. My electric citrus juicer comes out during lemon season and is my saving grace.) I vacuum seal and freeze the cubes in Foodsaver bags and take out what I need when I need it. I'm still working on last year's lemons, so I think I should go bake something! With Lemon Curd!

    Bookmark   January 12, 2010 at 3:18PM
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