It’s strawberry season in Michigan and that means it’s time to stock up on my favorite berry! My local u-pick sells them for $1.75 a pound, so I buy a bunch and then get to work preserving them for use throughout the year. Let me show you how to preserve your u-pick strawberries by freezing or dehydrating them!
My favorite way to preserve fresh strawberries is to freeze them. Frozen berries are perfect for smoothies, baking into cobblers or pies, or making a quick strawberry sauce for gluten-free pancakes or waffles.
There are a few steps to successfully freezing the berries, but once you get going, it’s quick work!
First up, you need to wash your strawberries. I use a 3 to 1 ratio of filtered water to white vinegar. I like to do this in a large bowl, but feel free to use a very clean sink if you are processing a large batch of berries. This ratio is best for destroying mold spores and bacteria. If you choose not to freeze your berries, cleaning them this way will extend their shelf life in your fridge (just make sure they are very dry before storing them).
Dump the berries into the water/vinegar mixture and swish them around, removing dirt, loose leaves, and any little critters that may be hanging on!
Next, place the strawberries in a colander and rinse with cold water. Pat them dry with a towel. Although I haven’t tried using a salad spinner lined with paper towels, I’ve seen this method mentioned several times. I’m going to give it a try this year.
Then you will need to line a baking sheet with parchment paper and make sure you have room in your freezer to fit the baking sheet. Trim the stems from the berries (make sure to check out the posts below on what you can do with strawberry stems) and spread the berries out on the baking sheet. I let them sit for an hour or two to make sure they are really dry and then I place them in the freezer. Once they are frozen, you can place them into freezer bags and they won’t stick together.
This same method works if you would like to cut the berries into smaller pieces for use in pies or cobblers, just make sure they are completely frozen before placing them into the bags. This will keep the berries from clumping together. You can also use this method for blueberries, raspberries, or blackberries.
My second favorite method for preserving strawberries is my dehydrator. I slice the berries about a 1/2 inch think and line the dehydrator trays with them. Set the dehydrator to 135 degrees and let it go for 6-12 hours. I like them when they are still slightly pliable, but pretty dried out. I store them in Mason jars in my pantry. They are perfect for snacking, mixing into homemade trail mix, or topping a gluten-free breakfast porridge.
So now that you have all these beautiful strawberries from your local u-pick, it’s time to try out some new recipes! All of the following are Paleo friendly, although some contain gluten-free grains or raw dairy. Enjoy!!
- Strawberry Paleo Pancakes by Confessions of an Over-worked Mom
- Strawberry Chia Seed Smoothie Bowl by Holistic Health Herbalist
- Strawberry and Cream Muffins (Gluten-free) by Raising Generation Nourished
- Red, White, and Blue Real Food Parfait by The Antidote Life
- Strawberry Coffee Cake (Gluten-free) by Delicious Obsessions
- Strawberry Granola by This is so good at Simply Healthy Home
- Strawberry Rhubarb Chia Parfait by Mind Body Green
- Strawberry Banana Muffins (Gluten-free) by Delicious Obsessions
- Strawberry Breakfast Cookie (Gluten-free, Grain-free Option) by Natural Fertility and Wellness
- Paleo Strawberry Scones (Gluten-free) by Healing, Yoga and Qigong
- Strawberry Vanilla Muffins (Gluten-free) by Au Naturale Nutrition
- Strawberry Coconut Bites by This is so good
- Moroccan Dessert – Strawberries with Cinnamon Lemon Honey Dressing by Yogi Mami
- White Chocolate Strawberry Cups by A Girl Worth Saving
- Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp by Simply Healthy Home
- Paleo Strawberry Rhubarb Shortcake by A Girl Worth Saving
- Strawberry Birthday Cake (Gluten-free) by Raising Generation Nourished
- Strawberry Mousse (Paleo and Vegan) by A Girl Worth Saving
- Easy Strawberry Fruit Snacks by Raia’s Recipes
- Paleo Strawberry Jam Cookies by A Girl Worth Saving
- Super Yummy Strawberry Chia Fruit Leather by Super Healthy Kids
- Paleo Strawberry Cake by A Girl Worth Saving
- Maple Cinnamon Summer Fruit Pizza by Food Your Body Will Thank You For
- Lemon Berry Skillet Cake by Savory Lotus
- Strawberry Clouds Dessert by Delicious Obsessions
- Strawberry Shortcakes (Gluten-free) by Divine Health From the Inside Out
- Strawberry Custard Tart (Gluten-free) by Au Naturale Nutrition
- Strawberry Electrolyte Smoothie by This is so good
- Strawberry Mango Maca Smoothie by This is so good
- How to Make Ruby Juice by Holistic Health Herbalist
- Strawberry Cucumber Lemon Water by Recipes to Nourish
- Homemade Strawberry Milk by Happy Healthnut
- Strawberry Banana Smoothie by Workouts and Wellness
- Strawberry Kombucha by Hollywood Homestead
- Homemade Strawberry Milk (Dairy-free) by Raia’s Recipes
- Strawberry Mango Citrus Smoothie with Kombucha by Recipes to Nourish
- Strawberry Spritzer Drink by A Girl Worth Saving
- Probiotic Strawberry Smoothie by Food Your Body Will Thank You For
- Hibiscus Strawberry Iced Tea Cooler by Recipes to Nourish
- Organic Strawberry Banana Smoothie by The Rising Spoon
- Sugar-free Strawberry Lemonade Slushie by Simply Healthy Home
- Strawberry Hibiscus Tea Frappe by Real Food Forager
- Jalapeno Strawberry Margarita by Food Your Body Will Thank You For
- Strawberry Bellini by Natural Fit Foodie
- Strawberry Rhubarb Ice Cream (Dairy-free) by This is so good
- Strawberry Basil Popsicles (Dairy-free) by This is so good
- Blender Strawberry Ice Cream (Dairy-free Option) by Eat Beautiful
- Homemade Dairy-free Strawberry Ice Cream by Naturally Loriel
- Strawberry Cream Popsicles by A Girl Worth Saving
- Fresh Strawberry Ice Cream by Raising Generation Nourished
- Strawberry Coconut Popsicles by Naturally Loriel
- Strawberry Lemonade Ice Cream (Dairy-free) by Recipes to Nourish
- Strawberry Rhubarb Creamsicles by Raising Generation Nourished
- Dairy-free Strawberry Ice Cream by A Girl Worth Saving
- Paleo Strawberry Ice Cream by Hollywood Homestead
- Strawberry Ice Cream Bon Bons (Dairy-free) by A Girl Worth Saving
- Summertime Strawberry Paleo Spinach Salad by The Paleo Fix
- Baby Spinach with Bacon Roses and Strawberry Hearts by Oh, The Things We’ll Make
- Spinach Salad with Grilled Strawberries, Asparagus, and Walnuts by Simple Bites
- Strawberry and Radish Antioxidant Salad by A Happy Healthnut
- Greens with Watermelon and Strawberries by The Organic Kitchen
- Blueberry, Strawberry and Jicama Salsa by Two Peas and Their Pod
- Strawberry Melon Gazpacho by Oh, The Things We’ll Make
- Chilled Mixed Berry Soup by A Happy Healthnut
Jams and Jellies
- Berry Cherry Chia Seed Jam by Natural Fit Foodie
- Strawberry Rosehips Jam by Delicious Obsessions
- Paleo Strawberry Jam by Paleo Cupboard
Don’t Throw Away Those Strawberry Tops!