Spinach salads, smoothies and other dishes are healthy, filling meals that are a common staple in many households and restaurants. Meals with spinach are rich in iron, Vitamin C, potassium and much more, making them a healthy way to get into nutrients you may be missing.
While spinach is a great addition to any diet, it is a hard item to keep fresh in your refrigerator as it wilts rather quickly. Buying frozen spinach or freezing it yourself is a great way to extend its shelf life.
Frozen spinach can be easily thawed for later use. Spinach can be easily and safely thawed in the refrigerator, at room temperature, in the microwave, using warm water, or when being cooked. With so many ways to thaw, it is an ideal dish to keep frozen and throw into meals you are cooking whenever desired.
How soon you need the spinach is a factor to consider when determining which method to use to thaw your spinach. These methods range from taking a couple of hours to just a few minutes.
Methods Of Thawing Frozen Spinach
In the refrigerator
Thawing spinach in the refrigerator is the most time consuming method, but it will yield great results. Spinach that has been thawed in the refrigerator is not too soggy or wet, given that the water does not melt very quickly.
Refrigerator thawing does take about two days to complete, so be sure to plan ahead of time if this is the method you are choosing. When you need to thaw your spinach for a meal you plan to eat immediately, this may not be the best way.
To thaw spinach in the refrigerator, simply move it from the freezer in the same bag into the refrigerator. Allow it to naturally defrost for about one to two days before cooking.
If you do not want to thaw all of the spinach that is in the packaging, break apart your desired amount, place it in a resealable plastic bag and put it into the refrigerator.
At Room Temperature
If you need your spinach thawed faster than in a few days, leaving it out at room temperature is a hassle free way to defrost it quicker. This method requires little effort and will also help keep your spinach from becoming soggy or wet.
Simply pace the desired amount of spinach you want to thaw into a strainer. Put the strainer into the sink so any melting water has somewhere to escape.
Allow spinach to thaw completely, up to five hours. Once it is thawed, consume or refrigerate immediately as leaving it out for too long can cause it to spoil.
With Warm Water
This is one of the quickest methods to thaw spinach when you need it for a quick meal as soon as possible rather than waiting hours or a day. This method will ensure no excess water is retained, keeping your spinach from becoming soggy.
When thawing spinach with warm water, simply place the desired amount straight into a strainer and spread it evenly throughout. Place the strainer of spinach into the sink.
Run warm water over the spinach, ensuring the water pressure is not too high. Move around the spinach with your hands as it thaws, ensuring all blocks of ice are melted and broken up.
Once the spinach has been defrosted completely, cook or serve immediately.
In The Microwave
Thawing in the microwave is another good method for when you need your frozen spinach defrosted quickly and do not have an abundance of time to spend on this task. Be sure to remove excess liquid so that your spinach does not become soggy or wet during cooking.
Take the desired amount of spinach you want to cook and place it in a microwavable dish.
Set your microwave to the defrost option. Microwave the spinach for about two minutes, until defrosted thoroughly. Once finished, move the spinach to a strainer.
Allow the excess water to drain through the strainer until there is none dripping off. Move the spinach to a paper towel and dry it, removing the rest of the liquid and preventing it from being soggy.
Cook The Spinach
Sauteing or adding spinach to soup is an easy way to defrost it. During the process of cooking, the spinach will thaw while being heated very quickly. This method will eliminate the need to thaw separately before preparing it.
If you want to thaw spinach while cooking it, simply add it to the meal you are cooking and allow it to defrost in the process. Don’t worry about the spinach becoming soggy or wet as most of the water will evaporate while cooking.
This method is a great way to preserve vitamins and minerals by not draining the water the spinach is in. If you ever want to combine steps, cooking spinach to defrost it is a great way to do so.
Spinach is one of the best vegetables to keep frozen. It can be stored for a long period of time, up to fourteen months if stored properly and at or under zero degrees fahrenheit.
Freezing spinach also keeps it from wilting or spoiling, as it does rather quickly when refrigerated. If you do not use spinach in the amount of time it takes to wilt in your refrigerator, it will often go to waste. Using frozen spinach instead is a great way to prolong how long it stays good for.
There are a variety of options when it comes to ways to defrost spinach. Under warm water, in the refrigerator, at room temperature, with the microwave and during cooking are all effective, easy ways to do so.
All of these methods will provide you with delicious, fresh spinach to use in your meals. Be sure to follow instructions to avoid having soggy or wet spinach after defrosting, no matter how you choose to do so.