Blueberries need to be stored in low humidity. Do not wash them until you're ready to use them. Fresh blueberries should last for two weeks in your refrigerator. Frozen or dried blueberries will keep for up to a year.
How To Store Blueberries
Blueberries can be kept:
- Fresh for up to two weeks. Do not wash blueberries prior to storing them as this will encourage mold growth.
- Frozen for up to a year. If possible, freeze them flat and store airtight to keep them from freezing in a solid mass.
- Dried blueberries will keep for up to a year.
The primary risk for blueberries in the refrigerator is moisture. Blueberry experts with the North Carolina Blueberry Council recommend keeping them as dry as possible until you're ready to eat them.
When you get them home, check them for stems and remove any soft or cracked blueberries. Don't wash them until you're going to use them, however, as they are prone to rot and mold if kept wet.
Rough handling may crack them, adding more moisture to the mix and increasing the risk of mold.
Can You Freeze Blueberries?
Blueberries are easy to freeze and will keep up to a year once frozen. Sort blueberries and remove any stems. Spread the berries on a cookie sheet and freeze over night, then transfer to an airtight container for long term storage.
Rather than washing berries before freezing, you can rinse them and add them to batters for pancakes or muffins while still frozen.
Blueberries can also be dried at home. Food expert Jackie Lohrey with Live Strong suggests blanching the berries to crack the outer skin, then drying them at 140 degrees Fahrenheit / 60 degrees Celsius for up to four hours.
You will need to monitor them carefully during the drying process as the oven door needs to stay cracked and the berries need to be turned.
Are Blueberries Good For You?
A standard blueberry serving size is one cup. Each serving contains 84 calories, 3.6 grams of fiber, 21 grams of carbohydrates, and 1.1 grams of protein.
Blueberries score in the top 20 fruits and vegetables for antioxidants, as well as providing one quarter of your vitamin C needs.
It should be noted that blueberries are high in vitamin K. If you're taking any form of blood thinner, your doctor can give you advice on how much vitamin K your body can tolerate.
What Are Blueberries Good For?
Fresh blueberries are great as a snack or sprinkled on breakfast cereal. They can also be added to vegetable salads in place of dried cranberries and are very tasty when combined with walnuts or almonds.
If you have more fresh blueberries than you can use in two weeks, you can make a simple blueberry syrup that will be a great addition to pancakes, waffles, or biscuits.
Finally, fresh or frozen blueberries are a great addition to smoothies.
Blueberries require an acidic soil and will take about five years to get established. They need plenty of moisture but can't tolerate standing water.
Blueberries in the wild are often found along pine forests, ideal spots for acid-loving plants.
Be aware that birds love blueberries as much as people, so you'll need to net your plants!
Commercially grown blueberries are most commonly raised and harvested by family farmers. New Jersey is the home of blueberry farming as a cultivated crop.
Blueberries are a burst of summer sunshine, and frozen blueberries make it easy to enjoy this sweet treat any time of the year. Enjoy!