Frozen vs Fresh Vegetables
Vegetables are a required part of our daily diets, but not all vegetables are in season all year. Vegetables can be frozen or canned, but does that mean they are as healthy as fresh vegetables? We’ll go through the twists and turns of which types of vegetables are the best to eat frozen or fresh.
Are Frozen Vegetables Healthy?
Yes, frozen vegetables are healthy. Raw vegetables intended to be frozen are picked in peak season and then frozen. Through this process, vegetables don’t lose much nutritional value.
Shortly after being picked, vegetables are snap frozen, which helps lock in nutrients. Nutrients like vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, folic acid, and fiber do not mind being frozen and therefore do not lose their nutritional value once being reheated.
Fresh vs Frozen Vegetables
All fresh vegetables can be frozen, but not all frozen vegetables will taste fresh. The frozen vegetables you see at the grocery store are there because they are the best vegetables to freeze. Although frozen vegetables may seem limited, there are benefits to purchasing either kind.
Benefits of Frozen Vegetables
Not only will frozen vegetables taste fresh when cooked, but they can also save money in the long-run. Fresh vegetables go bad after a few days in the refrigerator, but frozen vegetables can keep for months in the freezer. Here’s a list of some of the best frozen vegetables to buy:
- Brussels sprouts
- Green beans
Benefits of Fresh Vegetables
Because we can access a wider variety of local or organic vegetables year-round, this means there are additional vegetables with other nutrients for us to choose from. Not all vegetables offer the same vitamins, so one may argue that fresh vegetables are healthier than frozen vegetables, only because of the variety. However, researchers have concluded that there are no nutritional differences between the fresh and frozen versions of a specific vegetable.
Frozen vs Canned Vegetables
The two most common methods of preserving vegetables is to freeze or can them. Now that we know that frozen vegetables retain their nutrients through the freezing process, you might be wondering if vegetables lose their nutrients when they are canned.
Benefits of Canned Vegetables
The amount of nutrients in canned vegetables is also similar to that of fresh vegetables. Much like frozen vegetables, canned vegetables that are available in stores are picked at the height of the growing process and canned shortly after to preserve their freshness. These are the best vegetables to preserve by canning:
- Green beans
Are Canned Vegetables Healthy?
Yes, canned vegetables are just as healthy for us as fresh vegetables. Canned vegetables are cheaper and take far less time to prepare than fresh vegetables. Whether you choose to can vegetables from your own culinary garden or purchase canned vegetables to prepare later, both will cook up relatively similar to fresh veggies.
Vegetables come in fresh, frozen, and canned forms. No matter how you choose to purchase your vegetables and incorporate them into your menu, the nutrients will remain the same. With the variety of frozen and canned vegetables, you can explore creating different menu items and special entrees!