Vacuum sealing is considered as one the best and safest method one can use for extending the shelf life of different fruits & vegetables. Apart from this, it is also a great way to cut down enormously on food waste as you will be capable of storing the produce for a long time. Nothing beats seasonal and fresh produce, whether it is from farmers market, local grocery store or even your own garden, the aroma and sight of fresh produce is always a joyful one.
However, what a huge disappointment when the vegetable & fruit harvest season comes to an end. It is a known fact that every fruit & vegetable has a certain harvest time & after that time it is quite easy to miss the tasty and fresh version. Freezing or canning vegetables and fruits are recommended ways of enjoying them all year long with the help of vacuum sealing. Furthermore, ideologically, vacuum sealing vegetables and fruits & storing them in the freezer would look like a workable enough concept.
But it is perfectly okay if you are planning to consume those fruits and vegetables within 1-2 weeks because the same items when kept in oxygen-reduced settings or low temperatures, release special kinds of gases which badly interfere with the quality of the Ziplock bag’ seal, thus making it permeable.
Apart from this, a more dangerous thing is the presence & slow growth of the anaerobic bacteria once they are vacuum sealed & stored in a freezer without prior preparations. Here, I would like to share that this type of bacteria is present in soil & thus, can be transferred onto vegetables and fruits easily. And, when the same vegetables and fruits are vacuum sealed, it allows enough room for these bacteria to flourish and grow.
Best vacuum sealer for fruits
Preparing Vegetables & Fruits before Vacuum Sealing
It is better to start by peeling or skinning larger vegetables and fruits & cutting them into smaller portions whereas smaller produce such as plums, berries can easily be left whole. Afterwards, clean them carefully under running water. For vegetables, they will have to be fast balanced & placed in the bowl of chilled water right after that. This process of blanching requires you to place the vegie pieces in boiling water for 1-4 minutes to kill living surface bacteria. And, immediately putting the veggies in ice water will surely kill any succeeding cooking process that may take place within the veggies.
Most veggies can do absolutely fine, once vacuum sealed & stored in a freezer, such as green beans can last for around 2-3 years in the freezer after being vacuum sealed as compared to normal storage method.
Few cruciferous vegetables require a bit extra work, including the following:
- Brussels sprouts
Always remember that this group of the savory green veggies emit gases. So, if you are planning to throw these veggies into the bag & seal them then, the bag will fill up with those harmful gases & causing the veggies to spoil within a few days. In order to vacuum seal, the above-listed vegies for long-lasting storage, it is better to blanch them first.
Advantages of Vacuum Sealing
No doubt, vacuum sealing always increases the storage time of fruits & vegetables while maintaining the original flavor & aroma. It also protects the fresh produce from dust, bacteria, humidity, & other life-threatening elements that can impact the preservation, aroma, & taste of the food.
By simply vacuum sealing vegetables & fruits, foodies will surely have complete access to different fresh produce during the whole year around. Furthermore, vacuum sealing will prevent unnecessary wastage of food. As any excess or leftover fruits can be vacuum sealed & enjoyed at the later stage.
How Long Do Fruits and Vegetables Last Once Vacuum Sealed?
Well, on average the process of vacuum sealing will keep fruits & vegetables fresh and tasty 3-5 times longer. However, the exact time usually depends on various factors such as:
- Seal quality
- Proper preparation
- Freshness of the fruits and vegetables before sealing
To increase storage time, it is recommended to firstly flash frozen the vegetables & then vacuum seal them. Few food items will last for around 2 yrs. if preserved in this way.
Some Important Tips to Get Desired Outcomes
- Clean fruits & vegetables thoroughly in order to get rid of insects, debris, and dirt
- Never overfill the vacuum sealing bags
- Always follow instructions mentioned on the vacuum sealer because if you do not use the vacuum sealer exactly as stated by the manufacturer then, never hope for good results.
- Label packages & mention the processing date
- While processing huge batches, do take breaks in order to transfer the sealed bags to refrigerator
- Before vacuum sealing the vegetables, it is necessary to blanch them as the process cleans & soften the veggies thus, making them quite easy to store.
Also find out how vacuum sealer works