Fresh Ginger: Peel, Freeze, Grate!

One of the tips I learned while cooking at the Culinary Institute in Napa Valley was one that involves fresh ginger.

I love cooking with fresh ginger, and I use a ton of it. But it sure is a pain to peel around the knobs. I’ve also found that if I buy a big root of it, some always goes to waste when I leave it in the vegetable drawer.

-You can peel ginger by scraping it with the back of a spoon, but my favorite way is to use a peeler.

-Here’s the cool thing about a big hunk of peeled fresh ginger. After using the entire root, pop it in a Ziploc bag and place it in the freezer door (or a place of easy access).

-When it’s time to use, pull out and grate (while frozen), and then place it back into the freezer.

I used ginger a lot during my holiday cooking, and this method was awesome!

Do you use fresh ginger and how do you peel and preserve it?

25 comments on “Fresh Ginger: Peel, Freeze, Grate!”

  1. If you happen to enjoy making beverages with vodka and ginger beer, do what I do. Peel and slice the ginger, then place it in a jar, pour vodka over it, and store in the refrigerator. The vodka preserves the ginger forever, and that vodka also tastes perfect in my beverages. (Yes, I keep refilling the ginger jar with new vodka.)

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  3. Fantastic suggestion! I put all my extra fresh herbs in the freezer… I can’t believe I never thought to do it with ginger!

  4. I JUST used fresh ginger today but had to throw most of it out because it had gone bad :( I will peel and freeze as soon as I get it home next time! Thanks for the tip!

  5. Hello! I found you on twitter, and I just wanted to drop you a quick note and say hello, and how much I’ve enjoyed your blog! I’ve been wandering through various pages, reading posts, looking at the recipe for the pears (casserole) and admiring your lovely tables. Thank you for your inspiration.

    BTW I use ginger in teas, for colds and coughs. And try to incorporate it in dishes. I usually cut it into chunks and freeze it, but will try grating. Thanks for the tip.

  6. I love fresh ginger, and it was always drying up before we could finish it. I began freezing it and when we needed it, I took it directly from the freezer and using a rasp, grated just what I needed (the rasp is from Lee Valley – great for garlic too – I love it!) Of course a fine grater works well also. Because it is grated so finely, I don’t even bother to peel it any more. Try it!

  7. I love ginger and it gets used up fast. I peel it with a knife. Aside from ginger tea…I love making Sweet Peanut dipping sauce for Thai Tortilla Spring Rollsa and for Peanut Noodle salad. So yummy. I just throw it in the blender along with the other ingredients. What a great idea to freeze it!

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  8. Thanks for sharing! This is a great tip. My husband is Chinese and has recipes that he likes to use ginger in, but like you, I feel like ours often ends up going bad in the vegetable drawer. I will definitely try out this tip.

  9. We love fresh ginger, especially for my husband’s amazing pumpkin soup. There’s something so invigorating about the fragrance of fresh ginger. I never thought to freeze it – what a great idea!

  10. I love making fresh homemade gingerale with fresh ginger.


  11. I have never used fresh ginger, and I really rarely use ground, mainly because I’ve never cared for it, but I hear so many recipes that use it. I should really give it a try.

  12. I am thankful you shared this! I have been tossing ginger in the freezer for a while, bagless and unpeeled. It felt wrong but I didn’t know what else to do. And I’ve been getting annoyed when I grate however much I need and the peel is all doopy goopy around the outside just looking brown and unhelpful and like it shouldn’t be included. This method sounds WAY better! Yay!

    P.S. Your book was on my Christmas list and my sister bought it for me! It made its way back to South Africa with me, where we enjoyed a delightful Strawberry Salad this evening that put a big smile on our faces. (Sans bacon, plus feta!) Thank you two times!

  13. I love using fresh ginger. I freeze mine too, but I don’t peel it for all recipes. Usually I just grate the peel off and throw it away before grating the rest for my meal. I don’t mind if a few pieces of skin gets in the dish.

  14. Wonderful tip! I NEVER can use my ginger in time. One thing I have done with the dried up root is to just pop the whole thing into the grinder (cut into chunks first). Voila! Freshly ground ginger!

  15. Great tip! I’ll have to start freezing it! I love fresh ginger, but some of it does go bad on me…awesome to know that I can preserve it this way!

  16. Great tip Sandy! Considering the bevy of health benefits ginger has, we love that you are making it easy to have ginger on hand all the time!

  17. I really need to put this technique to use! I love fresh ginger, but always manage to let part of the knob go bad sitting in my fridge. To the freezer it will go :).

  18. I got to be honest. I have never used fresh ginger at all. I’d love some recipe ideas!

  19. I love fresh ginger!
    I have several recipes that call for fresh ginger and recently started do just what you recommended.
    Works like a charm and no more waste!

  20. Oh I’m glad I read this. I did not know about freezing it. Great tip!

  21. I do exactly the same thing you do and it works great! However, whether using a spoon or a peeler, it’s STILL a pain in the butt to peel. Hopefully someone will invent a way to do it better, soon!

  22. Great tip! I feel bad when I waste ginger – no more!!

  23. We use a lot of fresh ginger so storage isn’t usually a problem. Long ago I learned you can store peeled pieces in a jar covered with sherry. While not exactly “authentic” sherry is often called for in older westernized versions of Asian recipes. The freezer idea sounds great and next time I have too much ginger on hand I’m going to try it.


  24. I haven’t used fresh- sad because I use ginger all of the time! Maybe I should try harder to find it!

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