Can you Freeze Fresh Turmeric Root and for How Long?

Yes, fresh turmeric roots can be safely frozen for 3-7 days. This can help you in storing them for a longer time. Fresh turmeric roots contain more of turmeric oil, antioxidants and nutrients compared to turmeric powder. The freezing process preserves most of its nutritive quality.

Let us now know more about the benefits of fresh turmeric roots, advantages of freezing it and the freezing procedure.

Fresh turmeric root is more beneficial than turmeric powder

You might be wondering why to go extra lengths to buy turmeric roots and freeze them when you can easily find turmeric powder at shops and store them for a longer time.

The answer is that fresh turmeric roots are healthier and contain more nutrients than turmeric powder.

Here are some more benefits of fresh turmeric root:

Contains turmeric oil

The roots hold the essential turmeric oil which can assist in the absorption of turmeric by the body as turmeric is readily soluble in lipids and fats. The oil also provides an increased aroma and flavour.

More antioxidants

Fresh roots have more antioxidant capacity than turmeric powder. In the raw state, turmeric has greater ability to scavenge free radicals and neutralize the toxins from the body.

More nutrients

During the processing of turmeric for manufacturing turmeric powder, many nutrients are lost including oils, proteins, and some other nutrients.

This is because of the various treatment measures that turmeric undergoes. However, the final nutrient content depends on the temperature and method used to make the powder.

Better quality

When consuming fresh roots, one can be sure of its quality compared to the powder where there may be a possibility of adulteration with colours and harmful chemicals. Moreover, it is possible to grow these roots at home, and you can quickly get an organic produce.

However, turmeric powder has more concentration of curcumin than the root and therefore, one may require more quantity of fresh roots than the powder to achieve the same effect.

For more details Read –  Why Raw Turmeric is better than powder

Benefits of freezing the roots

Can you Freeze Fresh Turmeric Root and for How Long

Here are some benefits –

Increases storage time

Frozen turmeric roots can be stored for a more extended period as freezing helps in preservation and prevention of microbial growth for a substantial time. Most of the microbes are unable to thrive at such low temperatures.

Freezing preserves antioxidants

Freezing certain herbs and vegetables has been found to maintain their antioxidant capacity.

Thus, turmeric, whose ability to treat various ailments is the result of its constituent antioxidants, can be frozen without losing the antioxidant effect.

Easier to use

Frozen turmeric root is more comfortable to grate and add into dishes compared to unfrozen turmeric roots.

Always available

One can be sure of the availability of fresh turmeric roots even when they are not commercially available, especially during the off-season by storing sufficient roots by freezing.

Another alternative, if you do not want to use is to make the golden paste from the fresh root or turmeric pickle. Here are the recipes –

Tips for freezing turmeric root

Fresh turmeric roots can be frozen in a variety of ways. One can store small knobs, turmeric slices, grated roots or the roots as a whole. However, storing in small batches is preferred as one can take out only the required amount from the fridge without thawing the whole turmeric stored.

The roots should be washed and cleaned properly to remove residual soil before freezing. They can be frozen with or without peeling.

Turmeric roots can be frozen for 3-7 days.

Packing

It is better to store the roots in freezer-safe bags and boxes to preserve its quality and aroma.

Precaution

Avoid repeated freezing and thawing of the same roots as rapid and frequent temperature changes can damage some tissues and bring about structural changes. This may result in loss of color, aroma, flavor and nutritive value.

Thus, it is better to freeze the roots by cutting into small knobs or slices and taking out only what is required.

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7 Comments

  1. That’s a clever trick. Freezing spices is an unusual concept, one that we often don’t think much about. It seems like it would work well, as long as you planned in advance.

    My one issue would be timing. You say that the roots can be frozen for up to 7 days. It doesn’t seem like that is long enough to make the process worth the effort.

  2. I grow tumeric and have found that it keeps all summer if I leave it in the dirt! I would suggest to anyone who purchases raw roots that they will keep longer in a pot of dirt rather than freezing them

  3. TFH team Posting on behalf of Emily S –

    Another, more long term, method for freezing fresh turmeric root: I buy 2 or 3 pounds of fresh root.

    I crush them, leaving them still mostly attached. (small sledge hammer I have in my kitchen)

    I simmer all the roots in a stainless steel pot on very low heat (back burner, #2 setting on electric stove), pouring off liquid when I see the color. Cool the liquid and pour into ice cube trays, then put the ice cubes into baggies to keep them from drying out.

    You can get eight ice cube trays from 2 pounds of turmeric root.

    Use the ice cubes in rice, beans, stew, soup, smoothies, and in your dog’s dish. know anyone with chickens or hogs? – feed the depleted root to them. You can give the sack of ice cubes to other people.

  4. My ginger and turmeric plants are starting to go dormant. Can I still harvest the roots or should I go back to organic powder? My gingers were starting to send up blooms, I brought them inside and now the blooms are dying, is it just the change from outside to inside?

  5. “Turmeric roots can be frozen for 3-7 days.”
    is “days” a typo? it doesn’t make sense at all to freeze anything for such a short time, i’m shure it’s “months”!