If you have an abundance of green beans, you can easily freeze them so that you have a constant supply during winter. If you use a FoodSaver to vacuum seal your beans as well before freezing them, you’ll find that you can keep them in the freezer for up to 3 years.
Here’s everything you need to know to freeze a whole batch of green beans using a FoodSaver.
Gather Your Materials
To prepare your green beans for sealing and freezing, you’ll need the following materials:
- A clean paring knife
- Your FoodSaver vacuum sealer
- A selection of food vacuum bags to fit the portion of beans you want to freeze
- Salt and pepper if you want to season your beans so that they can be steamed in the bag
- A waterproof marker to label the bags
How To Prepare Green Beans For Sealing And Freezing
Follow these steps to prepare your green beans ready for sealing and freezing. This method does not involve blanching but just freezes the raw green beans.
- Wash the beans and leave them to dry completely
- Top and tail your beans using a sharp paring knife
- Either leave your beans whole or cut them in half or even in thirds
- Divide your beans into meal-sized portions
It is possible to just freeze your green beans this way without blanching them first. However, if you would prefer to blanch your beans, follow these steps.
- Wash the green beans and let them dry
- Top and tail your beans and cut them to the length you want
- Fill a large pot or saucepan with water
- At the same time, fill a large bowl with ice water
- Place the pot or saucepan onto the stovetop and bring to the boil
- Gently place a batch of the green beans into the boiling water using a slotted spoon
- Boil your green beans for around 3 minutes to blanch them
- Take the blanched beans out of the boiling water and place them immediately into the ice water. This will stop the cooking process.
- Allow the beans to cool completely in the ice water. You might need to add a little more ice during this process.
- Once the green beans are cooled, drain them and leave them to dry. You could use a salad spinner to speed up the drying process.
Vacuum Packing Your Green Beans Using Your FoodSaver
Place a portion of green beans into a vacuum seal bag and make sure that you leave enough space so that you can seal the bag. Add some seasoning to the bags if you intend to steam the beans in the bags after taking them out of the freezer. You can even add a dob of butter if you wish.
It’s a good idea to write on your bags first to label them, as it’s easier to do it this way than trying to write on a filled bag.
Once your bags are filled, vacuum seal them one by one using your FoodSaver. This will remove all the air from the bag and will seal it completely.
Freezing Your Green Beans In Their Vacuum-Sealed Bags
Now all you have to do is place the bags of green bags into the freezer. As the beans are vacuum sealed, they can be stored in the freezer for up to three years.
What Is The Difference Between Blanching Green Beans And Not Blanching Them?
It is common for people to blanch their green beans before freezing them if they’re just going to store them in airtight containers or plain freezer bags. The blanching process helps to protect the flavor, texture, and color of the beans.
However, if you’re going to use a FoodSaver to vacuum seal your green beans, this basically serves the same purpose. So, there is really no need to blanch your green beans before vacuum-sealing and freezing them.
Common Vacuum Sealing Mistakes To Avoid When Using Your FoodSaver
A FoodSaver vacuum sealer is fairly easy to use and is a great way to preserve the quality of your green beans before you place them in the freezer. However, here are some common mistakes to avoid to ensure that you get the best results.
Allow Your Green Beans To Cool Completely Before Vacuum Sealing Them
If you plan to blanch your beans before vacuum sealing, don’t make the mistake of placing them in the bags before they have cooled down completely. If you fail to do this, you’re going to end up with beans that are dry and tasteless.
Don’t Overfill Your Bags
Bags should be filled so that the beans are in a single layer, and there is around an inch of free space at the top of the bag for sealing. Overfilling your bags will not only make them more difficult to seal but could also result in an improper seal. This could cause your beans to suffer freezer burn when stored for a long time in the freezer.
Write And Label Your Bags Before Vacuum Sealing Them
It can be really difficult to write on a bumpy vacuum-sealed bag of green beans. Therefore, it’s a much better idea to write on the bag first before you fill it with green beans and vacuum seal it.
Seal Food In Meal-Sized Portions
Don’t be tempted to scrimp on food-saver bags by filling larger bags with green beans rather than meal-sized portions. Once you take the bag out of the freezer and open it, the contents will need to be used, as you can’t reseal the bag and put it back in the freezer.
How To Cook Your Green Beans In Their Vacuum Sealed Bags
Another advantage of freezing your green beans in vacuum-sealed bags using a FoodSaver is that they can be cooked or steamed in the bag. You don’t even have to defrost them first. This saves you time and ensures that your beans are lovely and fresh.
Here are two ways that you can cook your green beans in vacuum-sealed bags.
Simmer Your Green Beans On The Stove
This is commonly known as sous vide cooking. You place a pot of water on the stove and bring it to the boil. Once it’s boiling, you turn down the heat until it is just gently simmering.
Place a bag of your green beans into the water and allow them to simmer until they are the right consistency that you like. This is perfect if you’ve seasoned your beans first and added butter to them.
Once you open the bag, the beans are ready to serve and will be extra delicious.
Steam Your Green Beans In The Microwave
This is another quick method to cook your green beans in their vacuum-sealed bag. All you have to do is take the bag of beans out of the freezer and just cut off a small corner of the bag so that it can vent.
Place the bag in the microwave and cook for the required amount of time – usually around 4 to 7 minutes, depending on the power of your microwave and the quantity of beans you want to steam. This also works really well with beans that have been seasoned and buttered.
For an interesting change, you might even like to add some garlic butter to the beans before vacuum-sealing and freezing them.