Can you freeze cherry tomatoes? Yes! And it's actually the easiest, low-maintenance way to preserve cherry tomatoes. Learn how to freeze cherry tomatoes below!
If you've ever grown a cherry tomato plant, you know they can be incredibly prolific. And while there are innumerable ways to enjoy your cherry tomatoes (like in Baked Bruschetta Chicken, Tomato Ricotta Pasta, or Burrata Caprese), sometimes you want to preserve them to still enjoy after season's end.
Why You'll Love Freezing Cherry Tomatoes
- Freezing cherry tomatoes is hands down the easiest way to preserve your cherry tomatoes!
- It requires minimal hands on time.
- You can easily use frozen cherry tomatoes in any cooked tomato recipe.
How to Freeze Cherry Tomatoes
The By-the-Book Method
- Prep the cherry tomatoes by washing and drying them. Then place tomatoes in a single layer on a sheet pan or in dish with a lip that's been lined with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
- Flash freeze tomatoes in the freezer for 1-2 hours, until salad.
- Transfer frozen tomatoes into freezer-safe bags or storage containers and place back in freezer.
The No-Fuss Method (aka the lazy way😂)
Okay, so if I'm being honest with you, if I'm processing a ton of cherry tomatoes - I don't always have room to freeze them in flat layers on the sheet pan first!
What I've learned is that you can put cherry tomatoes straight in a bag and then into the freezer - and they won't stick to each other. A couple keys, though:
- You still have to wash and dry your tomatoes.
- Your tomatoes have to be dry. If they're wet, they will stick to each other if you toss them all in the same bag and put them straight into the freezer.
- The tomatoes have to be blemish-free. If they have bruises, splits, or any other kind of blemish, the tomato juices will leak out. Which means they'll leak over all the other tomatoes and you'll have one giant frozen tomato blob, instead of individually frozen cherry tomatoes.
How Long to Store Frozen Tomatoes
Frozen cherry tomatoes can stay in a regular freezer for 6-9 months, or in a deep freezer for up to one year.
Frozen Food Safety Tips
Frozen vegetables are safest when they're cooked post-freezing, to ensure minimal foodborne bacteria risk.
The good news is that frozen tomatoes work best in cooked tomato dishes, so win-win!
You also want to make sure tomatoes are blemish-free before freezing, as blemishes can be an easier way for bacteria to enter the fruit.
Bonus Tips for Freezing Tomatoes
- You don't have to pre-cut cherry tomatoes when freezing (that's the beauty of why they're so low maintenance!) -- but you can if you want to. Especially if you know you need your tomatoes cut a certain way for a recipe, it can be helpful to cut or pre-dice your tomatoes before freezing.
- I generally don't freeze my tomatoes with any seasoning, but if you want to up the flavor, try roasting cherry tomatoes before freezing them. This adds more depth of flavor that can create a richer dish when you use them in a recipe.
- Especially if cut, keep cherry tomatoes in a single layer on the baking sheet when freezing.
- Try using a vacuum sealer to remove excess air and keep frozen cherry tomatoes the freshest and safest longer. You can also try to seal a bag most of the way, insert a straw, and suck out excess air. (Note that vacuum sealers don't work the best if you're not flash freezing tomatoes beforehand.)
How to Thaw Frozen Tomatoes
The easiest way to thaw frozen tomatoes is overnight in the fridge. You can also thaw them at room temperature for a few hours.
And with some recipes you can just toss frozen cherry tomatoes straight in!
Ways to Use Frozen Cherry Tomatoes
Generally, you can use frozen cherry tomatoes in any recipe where the tomatoes are cooked or blended. (Unfortunately their texture changes too much after freezing to still be enjoyed fresh, like on salads.)
Use previously frozen cherry tomatoes in dishes like casseroles, sauces, stews, soup, chili, or on flatbreads or pizzas.
Recipes for Your Thawed Tomatoes
Frozen cherry tomatoes can be used in any recipe involving cooked cherry tomatoes. Try these favorites:
- Pesto Pasta with Balsamic Blistered Tomatoes
- Tomato Ricotta Pasta (pictured above)
- Classic Turkey Chili
- Hearty Vegetable Chili
Recap: Can You Freeze Cherry Tomatoes?
So, can you freeze cherry tomatoes! Absolutely. And it's pretty easy - just wash, dry, flash freeze, and then transfer to your storage container in the freezer. Then get creative with using them in all of your favorite blended and cooked tomato recipes.