Bushels of crisp apples, quarts of plump tomatoes, and plenty of the juicy berries line farmers market stands ready to be taken home by eager moms, dads, chefs and bakers alike. Not only is a farmers market the perfect place to stock up on the season’s finest produce, but it’s also a great time to grab some extra produce that can last even after the farmers market has closed for the season.

Freezing easily preserves vegetables such as asparagus, broccoli, peas, peppers, and spinach. They can be thawed to use in simple weeknight meals or prepared and frozen ahead of time for easy grab and go staples. The following techniques and recipes are perfect “make now, eat later” options!

{For more tips on how to store fresh produce, read this post.}

Tomatoes

Purchased an abundance of tomatoes? Not to worry! This Homemade Tomato Sauce by She Knows is the perfect way to preserve them for later.

Homemade Tomato Sauce. Recipe and photo source: sheknows.com

Homemade Tomato Sauce. Recipe and photo source: sheknows.com

Peaches

Michigan peaches are hard to resist, but if not eaten within a few days these beauties can unfortunately go to waste. Here are some expert tips for freezing peaches. When you’re ready, thaw, and use to make this Classic Peach Crisp recipe!

Cherries

Growing up, every summer canning cherries was a tradition in my home. My mom would get out the Ball Jars and we’d spend the day canning away and seeing who could flick the cherry pits the farthest. Canning cherries is fairly easy and makes for a great winter dessert.

Zucchini

On chilly mornings or as an afternoon snack this zucchini bread will be a sure crowd-pleaser. Bread that incorporates fruits or veggies is especially kid-friendly and good to take on the go!

Herbs

Basil, parsley, oregano and cilantro are the flavor superstars of savory fall and winter meals. In order to capture their freshness and harvest it for months to come, you can preserve your herbs by using this method.  Pesto is also a flavorful addition to pasta, pizzas, and sandwiches and is easy to make with excess basil. Freeze it now and use accordingly later!

Asparagus and Spinach Pesto

Asparagus and Spinach Pesto

Make-Ahead Meals

If you really want to get-ahead of the game, use your fresh produce to make meals, then freeze them to enjoy another day. Here are some great options to try.

What are some of your ways to preserve produce?



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