Find out how to freeze fresh blueberries for use in smoothies, baked goods and more.
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Frozen blueberries on a baking sheet
Credit: Ali Redmond

Whether they're from the farmers' market, grocery store or even your backyard, fresh blueberries are a delight to have on hand. Blueberries can be used in a variety of recipes, from salads to cakes, or enjoyed as a quick snack. Plus, these little berries are packed with potential health benefits, including supporting heart health and healthy aging. When you have an excess of blueberries, don't let them go to waste. Instead, learn how to freeze fresh blueberries.

Should You Wash Blueberries Before Freezing?

No, you should not wash blueberries before freezing them. Blueberries have a natural grayish-white coating on them called bloom, or epicuticular wax. The bloom protects the berry from dehydration and extreme temperatures. It also helps prevent mold and bacteria from growing on them. Washing the blueberries will destroy that natural layer of protection, so it's best to wait until the day you plan to use them to give them a quick rinse.

If you do choose to wash blueberries before freezing, be sure they are completely dry before freezing. Excess moisture could lead to bacteria, mold and rot. Dry wet blueberries with a paper towel or tea towel, or let air-dry at room temperature for an hour before freezing.

How to Freeze Blueberries

1. Sort through the blueberries, removing any twigs, leaves or debris. Arrange the blueberries in a single layer on a large rimmed sheet pan. Freeze until solid, one to two hours.

Hands placing blueberries on a metal baking sheet
Credit: Ali Redmond

2. Transfer the frozen blueberries to an airtight container or freezer bag. Label and date the container or bag so you know when the blueberries were originally stored.

a hand placing a blueberry in a glass Tupperware
Credit: Ali Redmond

How Long Can Blueberries Stay in the Freezer?

Frozen blueberries can last up to 10 months in the freezer. However, for the best quality, plan to use frozen blueberries within six months of freezing. The longer the blueberries sit in the freezer, the greater the chance of freezer burn, which can ruin the taste and texture of the berries. 

When you're ready to use the frozen blueberries, be sure to give them a quick rinse if you didn't wash them before freezing. For more on blueberries, learn how to store blueberries in the fridge.