Years ago, I was tasked with cleaning out a freezer full of frozen berries that had not been cleaned out in a very long time. The messiest part of the task was the berry juice that had gotten all over the inside due to the bags of berries melting then refreezing. Yes, just picture it for a moment. As a result of this experience, I vowed never to let my frozen berry supply carry over from one year to the next. I was determined to use up each year’s berry harvest by the time the next berry harvest came around. If you need to get some easy and tasty ideas for how to use frozen berries, you’re in the right place. These frozen berries recipes are just what you need!
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Almost Harvest Time
Well now it’s almost berry-harvesting time here in Oregon, and it fills me with joy, anticipation, and a bit of dread. I am very thankful for the raspberries and blueberries we are able to grow in our garden, but I have not yet managed to use up last year’s supply using my stash of frozen berries recipes. We already have a shelf full of jam and preserves in the pantry, so now I’m scrambling to turn the frozen berries into something else that is useful so they don’t go to waste. Have you been wondering what to do with frozen fruit besides smoothies? What can I use frozen berries for? Read on to find out just how easy frozen berries recipes can be!
You may be thinking that I could just give the bags of frozen berries to someone else, and I could, but it’s trickier than it seems to get rid of frozen berries without creating a mess. I would have to hand the frozen berries off to someone who could then put them directly into a freezer. Since we live a few miles out of town, by the time I arrived at the house of the berry-recipient, the berries might have started to melt and make a mess. That’s not the kind of thing I like to hand off to a friend. I’d like to keep the friends I have, so here are a few ideas for using up frozen berries that will (I hope) be of help to you if you need to use up your frozen berry supply. Although our berry supply consists mainly of raspberries and blueberries, any kind of berry will work in these frozen berries recipes. Blackberries, huckleberries, marionberries and any other kind of berry you have around would work!
Cobble Together a Cobbler
I happen to have the best recipe for berry cobbler. I use it most often with frozen blueberries, but any combination of frozen berries will do. To get the details and the fabulous recipe, check out the best easy blueberry cobbler. You’ll be glad you took the time to click on over.
It’s My Jam
Jam or preserves make excellent gifts to give away during the holidays. I already used many of our berries for jam or preserves, as noted above, but maybe you haven’t. Here’s one of my favorite jam recipes, Easy Raspberry Blueberry Jam. I love it because it uses both raspberries and blueberries, which we have in abundance.
Berry smoothies are another delicious way to use frozen berries. Here’s my sister’s favorite recipe for a frozen berry smoothie. Bonus: She adds in some chopped zucchini for even more nutritional value. Not only is it delicious, but it’s a healthy frozen berries recipe. If you’re looking for ways to sneak some extra veggies into your family’s diet, this is an excellent strategy. Delicious, nutritious, and refreshing!
Easy Frozen Berry Smoothie Ingredients
1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries or huckleberries
1 frozen banana
1/2 medium zucchini, chopped
1/2 cup almond milk
Directions for Making an Easy Frozen Berry Smoothie
Chop the zucchini. In a heavy-duty blender, such as a Vitamix, combine all ingredients. Blend until smooth.
You could also add flakes of dried kale, which is another one of my favorite ways to sneak extra vegetables into my family’s diet. If you’re interested in reading about my other sneaky vegetable strategies, have a look at the blog post I wrote.
Stock Up on Scrumptious Syrup
Blueberry syrup is easy to make. I like this easy blueberry syrup recipe because it is simple to can it and store it for future use. Blueberry syrup is delicious on ice cream, cake, and just about anything which could use some sweetness. I also make raspberry syrup and a friend of mine used the same method to make strawberry syrup. Berry syrups are an excellent way to use up a large quantity of frozen berries. Serve the berry syrup over pancakes, waffles, ice cream or cake in a mug.
Make Someone’s Day With a Hand Pie
If you have an air fryer, you could make easy blueberry hand pies. As a bonus, this hand pie recipe also includes a foolproof pie crust recipe. The air fryer makes the pies a snap to make, and won’t heat up the house if you’re making these in the summer.
All-Time Favorite, Berry Gelato
My all-time favorite way to use frozen berries is to make this easy berry gelato recipe, which appeared years ago in the Food Day section of the Oregonian. It was adapted from a recipe used at the now-closed Mio Gelato. I could not find links to it anywhere online, so here’s my version. To make this gelato, I just puree all of the ingredients in my food processor and freeze in my Cuisinart 2 Qt. Ice Cream, Frozen Yogurt & Sorbet Maker.
I received this ice cream maker as a gift from my parents, and it has revolutionized the way I make frozen treats. The recipe below literally takes only five minutes of hands-on time thanks to this machine. The rest of the time, I just let this marvelous creation do its work. The amazing secret to this easy-to-use time-saver is the freezer bowl, which is included with the machine. It may also be purchased separately.
Just keep the freezer bowl in your freezer (we keep ours in there year-round). Whenever you are ready to make a frozen treat, like ice cream or gelato, simply remove the bowl from the freezer and pour in the already mixed ingredients. Put the bowl in the machine, and turn it on. In about 20 minutes, your treat is ready!
Berry Gelato Ingredients
1 pound of fresh berries (I use frozen, 4 cups)
1 ½ cups granulated sugar, or to taste
½ cup cold water
1 tablespoon lemon juice (optional)
½ cup whipping cream (sometimes I use 2% milk and no one seems to notice)
Add all of the ingredients to the food processor, puree until smooth, then take the freezer bowl component of the Cuisinart ice cream maker out of the freezer where it is stored.
Pour the mixture in, then flip a switch to turn on the machine.
About 20 minutes later, check the progress. If peaks are forming and the gelato has gotten quite thick, remove it from the ice cream maker (it will be very soft).
Scrape it into a plastic freezer-safe container and put it in the freezer to solidify. The whole process only takes about 25 minutes, including the time in the ice cream maker. So simple!
Mix in With Your Favorite Pancake Batter
Some like pancake mix that comes in a box. Add water and you’re set! Others like to make pancakes from scratch. Whatever your preference, it’s super easy to add in some frozen berries. Blueberries are what I’ve used most, but other frozen berries would work as well. When the pancakes are cooking on the griddle, sprinkle on a few berries before flipping. Yum!
Add to Your Favorite Muffin Recipe
A few berries in a muffin can add some healthy pizzazz. When you are mixing the batter, just gently fold in the frozen berries, fill the muffin tin and bake. The berries will make the muffins burst with flavor.
Bake Into Your Favorite Quick Bread
Mix in a few frozen berries with your favorite quick bread recipe. This chocolate chip raspberry banana bread would be great with blueberries mixed in instead of raspberries. You choose!
Take Your Scones Up a Notch
My favorite scone recipe lends itself well to variations. Instead of making chocolate chip raspberry scones, you could easily make blueberry scones instead. Frozen, fresh, or dried berries may be used.
What Are Your Favorite Ways to Use Frozen Berries?
There you go, five easy ways to use up your frozen berry supply. So, how about you? What are your favorite berry creations? I’d love to know about them.
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