Oranges are some of the most versatile and delicious kinds of fruits around. They’re full of flavor, tantalizingly juicy, and can be used to make delicious desserts, or even feature as part of your five a day!
Oranges aren’t always in season so, perhaps you’ve recently purchased them in bulk while at your local grocery store, or maybe you’ve recently got back from a sunshine-fueled trip and purchased some delicious oranges while you were there.
Whatever the reason for wanting to preserve oranges, you’ve landed on the right article! If you’re finding yourself asking the question, ‘Can I freeze them?’ we’re here to lend a helping hand.
There’s a variety of ways you can go about freezing oranges, and this guide will help you choose which method you prefer, as well as providing you with some tips on how to preserve them. So, without further ado, let’s begin!
Our Complete Guide to Freezing Oranges
Though it might seem as though freezing oranges would be a simple process, it requires a little more preparation than simply chucking your oranges into the freezer and leaving them until you need them.
Just like with freezing other kinds of freezable fruits, there are some steps that you’ll want to follow to ensure the best results.
Depending on where you are in the world, oranges vary in size and color. Some kinds of oranges have a more vibrant, red color, while other types are the traditional orange that we all know.
They also aren’t readily available throughout the year, they have their peak growing seasons just like other fruits.
In general, oranges are usually harvested during the winter months (usually beginning towards the end of October) and are usually not ready to be picked until mid-June.
How to Prepare Oranges
Before freezing your oranges, you’ll first need to make sure that they have been correctly prepared!
Before we jump into the preparation process, you’ll first need to decide whether you want to peel your oranges or leave the peel on.
Preparing Oranges Without Peel
Take all of the oranges that you plan on freezing and carefully peel each one until all of the peels have been removed.
Try to make sure that all of the white pith has been removed, and then go ahead and divide each orange into quarters, just like how you usually would while eating them.
Then, take either a freezer-friendly bag or a container and place them inside.
Preparing Oranges with Peel
If you want to freeze your oranges as they are, all you’ll need to do is clean the peel by running it through some tap water and then placing them inside a freezer-friendly bag or plastic container.
After choosing how you would like to freeze your oranges and preparing them accordingly, you’ll now be ready to freeze your oranges!
Freezing oranges is actually pretty easy, and will ensure that they stay fresh for longer. In fact, after freezing your oranges, they’ll be able to last for 6 months to 1 year.
In order to make sure that you have all of the information needed to freeze your oranges correctly, you’ll find a step-by-step guide below that covers all of the different methods you can follow for freezing oranges.
1. How To Freeze Whole Oranges
If you’re in a rush, one of the easiest ways to go about freezing your oranges is by placing them in your freezer ‘whole’ or, in other words, still with their peel intact.
Freezing whole oranges is an ideal choice for anyone that wants to use their frozen oranges to make yummy, orange juice. So, if you love to make juice or regularly drink smoothies, this might be the freezing process for you.
To freeze your oranges whole, just follow these steps below:
- Take your oranges (ideally fresh) and wash each one with some tap water.
- With a freezer-friendly ziplock bag or a large container, place your oranges inside and then zip up the bag, or close the lid (depending on what you’re storing your oranges in).
- Place the oranges in the freezer.
After your whole oranges have been frozen in the freezer, they’ll be able to stay frozen for around 6 months before going bad.
2. How To Freeze Unpeeled Orange Slices
Though this might be a method that doesn’t require the removal of the peel, it does require a little more preparation than if you were to simply freeze your oranges whole.
Unpeeled orange slices are a great addition on top of desserts or can even make the perfect finishing touch in a fruity cocktail.
So, if you often host cocktail parties at your home, we’re sure that you’ll already be familiar with this method!
So, if you want to freeze orange slices with their peel still on, follow this method below:
- Prepare the oranges by slicing them into either quarters or rings, whichever style you prefer.
- Then, place the orange slices onto a baking sheet, making sure that the slices are not touching each other, and place them in the freezer until they have frozen.
- After the slices have frozen, remove the orange slices, and then place them into either a container or a freezer-friendly bag.
- Place the bag or container filled with your orange peels into the freezer.
When frozen in this way, the orange slices will last for up to 1 year!
3. How To Freeze Peeled And Cut Oranges
This next method is ideal for those that want to freeze oranges that can be used as a snack.
Not only does it eliminate the need of peeling and removing the white bits, it means that you can either wait for the oranges to defrost, or enjoy them frozen as a cold, icy treat.
Also, this particular method is able to retain the orange’s flavor and texture much better than the other kinds. Here’s how to do it:
- Carefully prepare your oranges by peeling them and removing the white residue/stringy bits.
- Then, carefully cut the oranges into little pieces.
- After you’ve cut them into smaller pieces, then all you need to do is go ahead and place them inside a sealable freezer-bag, or a container.
- Place in the freezer and allow to freeze.
Just like the other types, your oranges should last for up to one year when frozen in this way.
How To Freeze Oranges With The Peel
This next method will come in handy to those who wish to keep their orange peel intact rather than throwing it away.
Just follow the step-by-step instructions below to make sure you do it correctly:
- Carefully cut your orange into segments, making sure that you do not remove any of the peel.
- Place inside a freezer-safe ziplock bag or a container that can be frozen.
- Place in the freezer and keep for up to one year.
When you’re ready to defrost your oranges, why not put the leftover peel to good use? Here are some ways that you can repurpose it:
- You can place leftover orange peel inside brown sugar packaging to ensure that the sugar won’t go hard, as the natural oils in the peel help to draw moisture from the sugar in order to prevent it from solidifying.
- Place it in your cup of tea. Orange peel will infuse a citrusy, refreshing taste into the tea.
- You can make candied orange peel, which is a popular garnish on top of desserts, or paired with chocolate dip for a luxurious treat.
- You can use your orange peels to make zesty olive oil, perfect for salads.
- Believe it or not, the white side of orange peel can be used to polish wood! Just rub it against the wood that needs perking up for instant shine.
- To make an all-natural cleaning spray, you can toss your orange peel into a spray bottle mixed with white vinegar. Keep it in the fridge for a week and then use it to clean surfaces. It’ll leave a citrusy-fresh scent!
How Long Do Oranges Last In The Fridge?
Now that you’ve learned about the different ways that you can freeze your oranges, next, we’re going to give you the lowdown on how best to preserve them, particularly if you plan on keeping them in the fridge.
After you’ve defrosted your oranges, one of the biggest factors that you need to prepare for is temperature. Generally speaking, temperature plays the biggest role in how long the shelf life of defrosted oranges will be, so it’s important that you make sure that you get it right.
If you are planning on leaving your oranges at room temperature once you have defrosted them, it’s important that you’re aware that they will only stay ripe and fresh for around 1 week before they start to go bad and become inedible. Usually, oranges that need to be thrown away will begin to shrivel in appearance, as well as losing sweetness.
To prevent the decaying process from occurring and to extend the life of your oranges, one way that you can slow the process down is by keeping your oranges in the fridge as soon as they have defrosted. This way, your oranges should last for around 3 weeks.
As soon as you have taken your oranges out of the freezer and they have defrosted, be sure to follow these steps below to prolong their shelf life:
- Allow the oranges to defrost completely by placing them on your kitchen counter in a bowl.
- After they have defrosted, place the oranges into a zip-lock plastic bag.
- Then, place your oranges into the fruit/produce section of your refrigerator.
- Keep your oranges in the fridge and only take them out when you want to eat them, as this will help to ensure that the oranges are exposed to a consistent, cool temperature.
As a slight alternative to freezing oranges, another method you can choose is to dehydrate your oranges.
Just like the name suggests, this particular process involves drying out sliced pieces of orange in the oven, and the best part? It’s super quick and easy.
Dehydrated oranges can last for up to 2 years and make a delicious snack. Here’s how to do it correctly:
- To save time, preheat your oven to 200 degrees
- Slice your oranges and lay them out in a single layer across a piece of baking paper
- Cook for 2.5 hours, allow to cool, and keep inside a jar or fridge
The Nutritional Benefits Of Oranges
Besides being delicious, oranges are also super healthy!
Freezing your oranges won’t take away any of the orange’s nutritional benefits, so let’s take a peek at what types of health benefits oranges can offer you:
You’ll Get Your Daily Dose of Vitamin C
As we’re sure you already know, vitamin C is one of the main nutritional benefits that oranges offer and is one of the most obvious benefits you’ll get from regularly eating oranges.
Oranges are a fantastic source of Vitamin C, which is a vitamin that is essential to our health. Sometimes referred to as ascorbic acid can help our growth, development, and the repair of our body tissues, Vitamin C helps to form collagen and better our body’s ability to absorb iron.
Vitamin C can also help to strengthen our immune system, heal wounds more quickly, and maintain the strength of our cartilage, bones, and teeth.
Lower The Chances of Developing Heart Disease
The next benefit that eating oranges can offer you is a lower chance of developing heart disease. This is because the nutrients found in oranges can help achieve two things, which are keeping your blood pressure at a healthy level as well as helping to lower your cholesterol.
If too high, both of these things are the main factors that can cause heart disease.
In addition to this, oranges are incredibly high in Vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 can help to encourage more efficient hemoglobin production and raise magnesium levels throughout the body, which in turn helps to keep blood pressure at a healthy, stable level.
Not only that, but studies have further shown that citrus fruits, particularly oranges, have a compound inside them which is known as Polymethoxylated Flavones (PMFs).
This particular chemical compound has been shown to help lower cholesterol levels in the human body, which is another way that oranges can reduce the chances of developing heart disease.
Help to Maintain Healthy Blood Sugar Levels
Another way that oranges can help to improve your health is by maintaining healthy blood sugar levels. Oranges are extremely high in fiber, which is able to help promote lower overall blood sugar levels.
This is the main reason that, despite the sweet flavor of oranges, they are often recommended to diabetes sufferers as a tasty yet healthy snack.
Besides being very high in fiber, oranges also contain fructose, which is a naturally occurring kind of sugar that helps to effectively prevent your blood sugar levels from rising.
Help to Maintain Healthy Skin
The antioxidants that are found inside of oranges are able to fight free radicals, which are uncharged molecules, and are able to help slow down the appearance and growth of wrinkles, a lackluster complexion, and all other telltale signs of premature aging.
Oranges also have a very high content of citric acid, which is an acid that is able to effectively aid in the skin’s ability to naturally exfoliate itself, as well as being able to dry out spots and acne to reveal a more glowing and healthy complexion.
Orange peel can also provide your skin with some natural benefits - so make sure that you keep it! Besides throwing it in the trash, why not grind them into a paste and use them as an exfoliator?
Surprisingly, orange peel has a significantly higher amount of Vitamin C than the actual orange itself, so using it as a body scrub as part of your daily beauty routine can help to reveal a healthy, ‘just got back from vacation’ glow.
Vitamin C can help our bodies to make elastin and collagen, which will make sure that your skin looks younger, more supple, and youthful for longer.
Oranges are also enriched with a multitude of natural oils, and these natural oils that are found within oranges can help to keep our skin moisturized, all the while encouraging healthy cell turnover.
Help to Lower The Risk of Cancer
The next health benefit that oranges can offer you is a lower risk of developing cancer. This is because oranges are full of anti-carcinogenic compounds which help to effectively lower your chances of developing cancer.
One of these compounds in particular, which is known as D-limonene, is known for being able to lower the risks of lung and skin cancer.
Helps to Maintain Good Eyesight
Another benefit of regularly snacking on tasty oranges is that they can help you to maintain good eyesight. This is because, besides Vitamin C, oranges have a high level of Vitamin A.
Vitamin A is a crucial vitamin that the body needs to maintain the eye’s mucus membranes for clearer vision.
In addition to this, oranges can also help prevent macular degeneration which is caused by aging, which is a condition that can cause blindness.
So, there you have it. We hope that you enjoyed reading our helpful guide on the different ways that you can go about freezing your oranges.
Remember, before you freeze them make sure that you properly prepare your oranges so that they’ll maintain their flavor and last for longer.
Plus, don’t forget to preserve your peels and make them into a scrub for glowing skin! Why not bookmark this page so you can always come back and brush up on your knowledge if you forget a step?