Can You Freeze Jalapenos: Preserving Your Harvest

Jalapenos, those vibrant little firecrackers of flavor, can transform a dish from bland to bold with just a few slices.

Jalapenos are popular and versatile cooking chili peppers, perfect for spicing up salsas, guacamoles, nachos, tacos, and more.

But what if you have more jalapenos than you need? Can they be frozen for use later on? Here, we’ll explore the ins and outs of preserving these spicy gems. This freezing jalapenos guide is not restricted to just jalapenos, you can use this guide to freeze banana peppers, bell peppers, poblano peppers, and more.

I. Can you freeze jalapenos?

Yes, freezing jalapeno peppers is a great idea. Fortunately, jalapenos are excellent for freezing due to their sturdy texture and robust flavor that can stay intact even after being put in the freezer. This makes them a great choice for anyone who wants to store them for future use.

The science behind freezing these hot peppers is that when the water inside pepper cells is frozen, it expands, leading to a breakdown of cell walls – this can affect both the peppers’ texture and flavor and cause them to become soft or watery.

II. How to freeze jalapeno peppers?

Freezing peppers is incredibly simple. To freeze fresh jalapenos peppers properly, follow these simple steps:

  1. Wash the fresh jalapeno peppers thoroughly under running water.
  2. Dry them completely using a paper towel or a clean kitchen towel.
  3. Cut off the stems using a sharp knife.
  4. Slice them into small pieces, discs, or halves as per your preference. 
  5. You can also leave them whole if you need them for dishes like stuffed peppers, poppers, and so on.
  6. Remove the seeds and membranes from the jalapenos if you want to reduce the spiciness level.
  7. Spread the sliced jalapeños or whole jalapenos on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, making sure they are not touching each other.
  8. Place the baking sheet in the freezer and flash freeze the jalapenos whole or sliced for 1-2 hours or until they are completely frozen.
  9. Once the jalapenos are frozen, transfer them to a ziplock bag or an airtight container.
  10. Prevent the freezer burn by squeezing all air out of the freezer bag. Label the container with the date of freezing.
  11. Place the jalapeño peppers back in the freezer and use them within 6-8 months for best results.

III. How to thaw frozen Jalapeno peppers?

To thaw the frozen peppers, you should first take them out of the box or the bag. Now, place the frozen peppers on a paper towel or in a fine mesh sieve. This will let the excess moisture wick away and reduce the sogginess of the Jalapenos. Now, your thawed peppers are ready to use.

IV. How to use frozen Jalapeños peppers?

Frozen peppers can be used directly in a variety of dishes, including soups, stews, sauces, and casseroles. Here are a few ideas for using frozen jalapenos:

  • Add them to chili or taco soup or marinades for grilled meats or vegetables for an extra kick of flavor.
  • Mix frozen jalapenos with diced tomatoes, onions, and cilantro for a quick and easy salsa.
  • Top them over pizzas and nachos for added flavor.
  • Add them to enchiladas, quesadillas, or fajitas for a spicy twist.

Note: When cooking with frozen jalapeños, it’s best to add them directly to the dish without thawing them first. This helps them retain their texture and flavor better. If you want to thaw them first, make sure to drain any excess water before using them in your recipe.


1. Do you need to blanch jalapenos before freezing?

You can blanch jalapenos briefly before freezing them. Blanching can help preserve their color and flavor, especially if they will be stored for a longer period of time.

2. Do frozen jalapeno pepeers get mushy?

Frozen jalapenos can get mushy if they are not frozen and stored properly. To prevent this, it’s important to freeze them in a single layer on a baking sheet before transferring them to an airtight container or ziplock bag. 

You can try to use them directly in recipes without thawing them first. This works well for cooked dishes and helps retain their texture and flavor.

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