With our crazy busy schedule, deadlines to meet, and responsibilities to achieve, we’re spending less and less time cooking our food or even going to the grocery store. But still, it’s important and crucial to eat the best healthy diet to keep up with the demands of our everyday lifestyle.
Thanks to frozen vegetables, you need not go and buy fresh vegetables at the market every day to sustain our healthy diet. With these frozen veggies, we can easily thaw and cook them in no time amid our busy schedule. So the question is, how do you perfectly thaw frozen veggies, especially frozen spinach?
Different Ways to Thaw Frozen Spinach
In this article, we will show you simple methods of perfectly thawing your frozen spinach real quick.
1. Thawing in the Fridge
- You will need to thaw the frozen spinach at least two days prior. Transfer the spinach from the freezer into the fridge. Have it thaw naturally without going through different steps on perfectly defrosting it.
- The frozen spinach will not be soggy or too soaked with water because its temperature drops slowly and not drastically.
- Note that this method might not be the best choice if you’re planning a last-minute meal. To use this method, it’s best to plan ahead since it would take you a day or two to do this method.
2. Thaw in Room Temperature
- If you’re going to work or need to do chores outside the house no longer than 5 hours, you can take out your frozen spinach and let it thaw on the sink.
- Ensure that the package of frozen spinach was placed in a good size strainer so the water can easily drip down the drain. It’s best to put it in the sink instead of in the counter so it won’t get too wet.
- Cook or consume the frozen spinach immediately after thawing at room temperature.
3. Thaw with Warm Water
- If you’re really in a hurry, you can easily do this trick and use up some warm water and have it thawed without waiting for hours or even a day.
- Take out a strainer and open the package of the frozen spinach. Transfer the spinach onto the strainer and spread it evenly.
- Then run warm water from the sink onto the frozen spinach. Make sure the pressure of the water is not that strong.
- Use your hands to slightly flip the frozen spinach and get rid of the blocks of ice away from it so it thaws perfectly.
- The drainer as well will help to drain the excess liquid when it’s defrosting only retaining well-thawed spinach.
4. Using a Microwave Oven
- This is another fast method to thaw frozen spinach on a busy day. Just take out the frozen spinach from the package and transfer it in a microwavable bowl or container.
- Microwave the spinach for about 2 minutes using the defrost option.
- Take out a strainer and have the excess liquid drip from the spinach.
- Then, transfer the spinach on a paper towel to dry and get rid of the rest of the liquid.
- You can squeeze out the liquid and let it drain down the sink.
5. Just Cook It
Frozen greens especially spinach defrosts very fast overheat. You don’t even have to wait for so many hours to enjoy it over a meal. Although, that will depend on what recipe you’re making. When you need to cook it, just simply cook the frozen spinach directly to the pan.
I like doing this especially when I don’t have enough time to spare and need to cook. This also retains most of its liquid that has vitamins and minerals instead of draining some of it while it’s thawing. So I just get a few blocks of spinach and let it thaw while it’s cooking. It’s simple and easy to do.
More Tips on Thawing Frozen Spinach
- When thawing frozen spinach, never run it with hot water, always run it with just warm water so it won’t cook during the process. Also, it’s going to lose most of its juices if you run it with hot water.
- Do not leave frozen spinach too long outside room temperature. If it’s more than 8 hours that it’s been sitting outside, it needs to be consumed immediately. If it was out more than the time frame, you will have to discard the spinach since it’s no longer safe to consume it.
- When thawing it in the microwave, do not use the highest temperature or the spinach will definitely burn. It’s best to use the defrost option to ensure that you’re only melting the blocks of ice. If your microwave oven doesn’t have this option, it’s best to use the lowest temperature and check it every minute so it won’t cook or burn inside.
- Never eat frozen spinach when it’s not properly thawed. It could be unsafe for your health because of the chemicals from the freezer. Make sure to thaw it and wash it properly before eating especially if you want it raw for your salads.
- Do not freeze a package of thawed spinach or any greens back to the freezer. Changing temperatures in the food could result in health risks and unsafe consumption. It’s best to consume it directly once it’s thawed.
- I suggest defrosting small batches of frozen spinach so you can store the leftover back to the freezer. This way you’ll only consume what you will need instead of keeping leftovers.
- When you have leftover spinach, you can keep it in the fridge to store for just two days and should just be reheated at least once. Remember that constant changes in the food’s temperature could result in contamination by developing harmful bacteria.
- When storing frozen spinach or any frozen greens, always monitor the expiration date so you won’t accidentally eat expired food. Especially with frozen vegetables, it’s good to note that these only have a shorter shelf time because they have to be consumed as fresh as possible.
Is it safe to eat thawed frozen spinach?
Yes, it is safe, as long as it’s thawed the right way. Just like what I mentioned, if it was thawed and exposed at room temperature for more than 8 hours, it has likely developed bacteria that might be harmful to your health. It’s safe to heat if thawed and washed properly and consumed immediately after thawing.
Can you fry frozen spinach?
Yes, you may fry the frozen spinach. What you need to do is to set a frying pan onto the stove and grease it with some lard or oil. Let it heat up for a little bit then place your frozen spinach on top over medium-low heat.
You will notice that the spinach will release some steam since it’s cooking while also defrosting. This technique can be useful especially if your recipe calls for frying or sauteing the ingredients.
How do I cook frozen spinach?
You can cook it in so many ways actually. You can fry it, saute and even steam it. I personally like mine steamed or pan-fried when frozen. If I need to add the spinach for a salad, I steam my frozen spinach first before adding it.
For sauteed vegetable dishes, I pan fry my spinach before incorporating it with other ingredients just to get rid of the excess frost.
There you have it. I hope you have learned a lot about properly thawing frozen spinach on your next meal plan. It’s good to practice proper food safety, especially with frozen goods since it has some sensitivity to temperature.
You should be good with any methods you plan to choose above as long as you follow it right. Don’t forget to take note of our tips as well and try to share it with others. Happy cooking!