How to Freeze Snap and Snow Peas

by Becky

My favorite way to preserve snap and snow peas is to freeze them. It produces a pea that still has some crunch and maintains its vibrant green color. Below I share a detailed yet concise method of how to freeze snap and snow peas. And yes, for best results blanching is required!

An arrangement of purple snow peas and green snap peas on a wood table.

How To Remove Strings from Peas (The Easy Way)

Both snap and snow peas have a tough part of the pea that resembles a string on the edges. It is difficult to eat so it’s best to remove the strings prior to freezing.

The easiest way to do this is to ditch the kitchen knife and snap off the pea top and remove the strings at the same time using your fingers. 

How to remove the top of a snap pea.

To do this, push your thumb right below where the pea was connected to the plant. With your other hand, grab the top and pull back as you push your thumb forward. The top separates and the thick strings pull off the pea. 

How to remove the strings from a snap pea.

I put the pea tops and string in the compost and the snap peas go into a bowl.

Steps to Freeze Snap and Snow Peas

1. Wash freshly picked peas in cold water.

2. Snap off pea tops and remove strings from peas.

3. Prepare a large bowl of water and fill it with ice.

A large bowl of water filled with ice.

4. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling and vigorous boil over high heat.

A boiling pot of water.

5. Pour peas in the pot and boil for 90 seconds for snap peas. For snow peas, boil for 2 minutes.

Snap peas inside a pot filled with boiling water.

6. If you are making many batches, remove the peas with a sieve or slotted spoon. Otherwise drain peas in a colander.

Transferring blanched peas out of a pot of water with a sieve.

7. Immediately transfer the peas into the ice water bath and let sit for at least 2 minutes. 

A bowl filled with ice water and snap peas.

8. Remove peas from the ice water bath using the sieve or slotted spoon, or drain in a colander if you’re making one batch.

Frozen peas on a baking sheet.

9. Place on a baking sheet in a single layer and freeze for at least 2 hours. 

A plastic vacuum seal bag filled with frozen snow peas being vacuum sealed.

10. Remove peas from the baking sheet and put into plastic freezer bags removing as much air as possible. Alternatively, you can place in vacuum seal bags and seal.

11. Place in the freezer and store for up to one year.

What is blanching?

In case you’re new to freezing food, blanching is the process of using heat to kill enzymes in food. Usually this is done by submerging the food in boiling water for a short period of time but steam can also be used.

Immediately after the food is boiled or steamed it is immersed in ice cold water to stop the food from continuing to cook.

Blanching is often used prior to freezing food because raw foods contain enzymes that over time will break down the food. This results in a negative change in texture, flavor, and color when enough time elapses.

Do I have to Blanch Snap and Snow Peas?

Blanching is not necessary for all fruits and vegetables, however, for snap and snow peas it is absolutely needed! 

You might be able to get away with freezing snap and snow peas without blanching for a few weeks but over time the quality will become unpalatable.

A pile of snow peas and snap peas on a table.

Tips to Freeze Snap and Snow Peas

  1. The time between the harvest and preserving of peas should be as short as possible. Freshly picked peas are more nutritious and crispier even after blanching.
  2. After pouring the peas in the boiling water, if the water doesn’t immediately return to a boil, then wait until it does before starting the timer.
  3. Have lots of ice ready to cool off the peas after boiling. The ice melts quickly when making large batches. You want the ice water bath to stay ice cold!

Equipment

There is no necessary equipment, however, using a vacuum sealer to remove air from the bags can prevent freezer burn.

How Long Do Snap and Snow Peas Last in the Freezer?

Snap and snow peas will last in the freezer for at least one year in ideal conditions. When I say “ideal conditions” I mean that they have been blanched first, and then are vacuum sealed in a bag to remove the air. 

These conditions prevent freezer burn. Also storage in a deep freezer is preferred as it helps prevent temperature fluctuations and therefore extends the time that the snap and snow peas will last. 

How to Freeze Snap and Snow Peas

This method of freezing peas results in a vibrant green pea that maintains some crunch.
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time2 minutes
Cooling in Ice Bath2 minutes
Total Time34 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Keyword: snap pea, snow pea

Ingredients

  • snap or snow peas

Instructions

  • Wash freshly picked peas in cold water.
  • Snap off pea tops and remove strings from peas.
  • Prepare a large bowl of water and fill it with ice.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a rolling and vigorous boil over high heat.
  • Pour peas in the pot and boil for 90 seconds for snap peas. For snow peas, boil for 2 minutes.
  • If you are making many batches, remove the peas with a sieve or slotted spoon. Otherwise drain peas in a colander.
  • Immediately transfer the peas into the ice water bath and let sit for at least 2 minutes.
  • Remove peas from the ice water bath using the sieve or slotted spoon, or drain in a colander if you’re making one batch.
  • Place on a baking sheet in a single layer and freeze for at least 2 hours.
  • Remove peas from the baking sheet and put into plastic freezer bags removing as much air as possible. Alternatively, you can place it in vacuum seal bags and vacuum seal. A vacuum sealer is preferred because it extends the shelf life of the peas and prevents freezer burn.
  • Place in the freezer and store for up to one year.

Notes

Notes: If you’re wanting to keep peas in individual pieces, it helps to have the peas dry off on a towel before placing on the baking sheet and flash freezing.

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4 comments

Laurel M. June 10, 2024 - 2:46 am

Great info! Do you use them in stir fries later? What else?

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Laurel M. June 11, 2024 - 3:00 pm

Also, good job on the emails. you’re going to do great! you’re a fantastic gardener and I’ve seen your paintings–you are very talented. I got married at 19, too! 😉

Reply
Becky June 11, 2024 - 6:06 pm

Thank you!

Reply
Becky June 11, 2024 - 6:09 pm

Yes, stir fry and they are also a great addition to pasta. We chop them up and add them to our lemon chicken pasta or my boys really like alfredo and they add it to that.

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