Watermelon is a delicious and popular fruit to eat throughout the year, especially the summer months. In addition to going to the beach and firing up the barbecue grill, snacking on some watermelon on a hot, sunny day can be a great idea. Watermelon can be used on its own or it can be added as part of a fruit salad or with a dessert. If you see a big sale on watermelons at your local supermarket, and you would like to buy more than one to save some money, is it a good idea? How long can you store watermelon for without it going bad on you? The question remains, can you freeze watermelon?
Can You Freeze Watermelon?
The answer to this question is a resounding yes. Watermelon can be frozen quite easily especially due to the fact that this particular fruit is made up of over 90% water content. However, there are certain things that you should be aware of before you get ready to freeze your watermelon. The texture, will likely a change a little bit after the freezing and thawing processes. The taste and flavor of the watermelon after freezing may become less sweet and sugary when you bite into it so if that’s important to you, be aware that the fruit may change over time for better or worse.
Still though, freezing the freshest watermelons you can buy will limit these changes from happening substantially. Before you freeze the watermelons, check to see if its’ core is hollow, and if its’ shape is round like an oval. The actual fruit of the watermelon should be colorful, juicy, and firm. The exterior of the watermelon should not have any off-colored spots or discoloration visible. Lastly, it’s important for these fresh watermelons to have solid rinds, which would help to indicate just how ripe they are. Keeping a small checklist of these physical characteristics would help to ensure that the watermelons are fresh and ripe, which would guarantee a smoother freezing process overall.
The Freezing Process
Before you begin the freezing process for the watermelon, it is very important to remember to remove the seeds or get a seedless kind of watermelon ahead of time. With that accomplished, here are the important steps to adhere to when it comes to freezing your watermelon successfully:
- First, cut the watermelon open to remove the seeds. You can use the watermelon then as a large cube, divide it into big chunks, or use a melon baller to create small balls of watermelon with a scooper.
- Next, you will want to place your pieces or chunks of watermelon on a baking sheet or tray. To ensure best quality, remember to place some wax paper or plastic wrap over the pieces of melon on the tray before you put them into the freezer.
- The baking sheet or tray should then be put into the freezer until the point where the watermelon pieces have become completely frozen. Then, you’re going to want to move the watermelon pieces from the tray to freezer-safe bags or containers for an individual serving or multiple servings depending on how you plan to use the watermelon.
- After placing the watermelon pieces into the freezer bag(s), remember to remove all excess air and seal them tightly to limit exposure to outside elements.
- Make sure to label with a permanent marker the date of first freezing for all bags and containers that have been frozen with the watermelon.
- It is best to freeze watermelon for up to ten to twelve months and no longer than that period of time for tasty results.
The Thawing Process
After removing the frozen watermelon from the freezer, you are going to want to let it thaw out in the refrigerator for a few hours or up to a couple of days depending on when you planning on using or consuming the fruit. Letting it thaw in the refrigerator directly after its’ been in the freezer is the best way to maintain its’ flavor, consistency, and texture. Just be aware that thawed watermelon after freezing must be used within four days after being put in the refrigerator.
Also, it’s highly inadvisable to refreeze those watermelon chunks or pieces after they have already been frozen and thawed out once before. You may also want to add a little bit of sugar and water to your watermelon to replace the liquid and nutrient content that was lost during the freezing and thawing processes.
Watermelon, whether its’ served whole or in chunks and pieces is a consistently popular snack that contains Vitamin C and other vital nutrients. After its’ frozen, you can also use it as a healthy dessert for the kids by putting the watermelon on a Popsicle stick. Now that you know that watermelon is both safe and easy to freeze, you won’t hesitate to buy a few of them in bulk next time you see a big sale at the local supermarket. Enjoy!