Mangoes are a tropical fruit that tastes amazing, but their fresh season only lasts a few months. Many people wonder if you can freeze mangoes to enjoy their sweet flavor all year. The answer is yes! Freezing mango is easy to do at home.
How to Choose Mangoes for Freezing
When selecting fresh mangoes to freeze, look for fruits that are ripe but still firm. Mangoes will continue to ripen after they are picked, so choose fruits that yield slightly to gentle pressure but are not soft or mushy. Overripe, soft mangoes will turn to mush when frozen.
The best varieties of mango for freezing include:
- Tommy Atkins
Avoid mangoes with bruised, shriveled, or moldy spots. The fresher the mango, the better the frozen product will taste.
Steps to Freeze Mangoes
Freezing mango is simple with these easy steps:
1. Wash and peel
Rinse mangoes under cool running water and gently scrub the skin to remove any dirt or debris. Peel the mangoes with a vegetable peeler or sharp knife. Be sure to remove all of the skin and the large pit in the center.
2. Slice or dice
Cut the mango flesh away from the pit. Then slice or dice the fruit into bite-sized pieces or the desired shape.
3. Prepare for Freezing
There are two ways to prepare mango for the freezer:
- Arrange the slices or chunks in a single layer on a baking sheet. This prevents pieces from freezing together in a solid clump.
- Mix diced mango with a bit of sugar or syrup. The sweetener helps maintain flavor and texture.
Place mangoes in the freezer uncovered for 1-2 hours or until completely frozen. Then transfer to zip-top freezer bags or airtight containers, removing as much air as possible.
Label bags with the contents and date. Frozen mango will keep for 6–12 months at 0°F.
To use frozen mango, simply rinse under cool water to thaw or add directly to smoothies, yogurt, oatmeal, desserts, and more—no thawing is needed!
Other Ways to Use Frozen Mango
Frozen mango can be used in many delicious recipes beyond smoothies and desserts. Try adding it to:
- Yogurt parfaits: Layer frozen mango chunks with Greek yogurt and granola for a quick breakfast parfait.
- Overnight oats: Mix diced frozen mango into overnight oats for a boost of sweetness and texture.
- Fruit salads: Thaw frozen mango to use in fruit salads along with pineapple, berries, kiwi, and more.
- Chutneys or relishes: Blend frozen mango into chutneys as a complementary flavor to spices and herbs.
- Curries: mangoes pair wonderfully with curries. Use frozen diced mango or puree in curry dishes.
- Salsas: Add thawed mango chunks to salsa for a tropical twist. Great with fish or chicken.
- Ceviche: The sweetness balances the citrus in ceviche. Add thawed mango to shrimp, fish, or vegetable ceviche.
- Smoothie bowls: Blend frozen mango into a thick smoothie and pour into a bowl. Top with granola, berries, and nuts.
- Ice pops: puree frozen mango and mix with yogurt or citrus juice. Pour into popsicle molds for healthy frozen treats.
So don’t limit frozen mango to just smoothies! Explore all the savory and sweet ways to enjoy this tropical fruit.
Tips for Selecting Fresh Mangoes
Picking out the perfect fresh mangoes to freeze can make all the difference. Follow these expert tips:
- Choose mangoes that are slightly firm but yield to gentle pressure. Avoid hard, underripe, or extremely soft mangoes.
- Look for a strong mango scent at the stem end. This indicates ripeness.
- Check the color. Ripe mangoes will have more yellow, orange, and red hues.
- Size matters. Choose larger mangoes, which have higher flesh-to-seed ratios.
- Inspect the skin. It should be taut and smooth, without bruises or blemishes.
- Consider the variety. Ataulfo, Kent, and Keitt mangoes freeze especially well.
- Ask for a taste. Most grocery stores will provide mango samples if requested.
Following these mango selection tips will ensure you start with high-quality, ripe fruit worthy of freezing and enjoying for months to come.
Tips for Freezing Mangoes
Follow these tips for the best-quality frozen mango:
- Use ripe, unbruised fruit for maximum flavor.
- Avoid overcrowding mangoes in the freezer. Lay them in a single layer on trays before transferring to bags.
- Prevent freezer burn by using airtight packaging. Squeeze out excess air from bags.
- Add lemon or orange juice to prevent browning. The acidity preserves color.
- Blend frozen mango into smoothies for a thick, icy texture.
- Thaw in the refrigerator overnight for use in desserts or salsa.
- Enjoy frozen mango within one year for optimal freshness and taste.
What Not to Do When Freezing Mangoes
There are a few things to avoid when freezing mangoes:
- Do not freeze overripe, extremely soft mangoes. They will become mushy when thawed.
- Avoid freezing large chunks or whole mangoes. Opt for diced pieces instead.
- Do not allow frozen mango pieces to thaw and refreeze. This affects texture.
- Do not store frozen mango for over a year. Flavor and quality deteriorate over time.
- Never freeze mangoes in airtight containers. They need ventilation to prevent off-flavoring.
Following the proper methods for selecting, preparing, freezing, and storing mangoes will result in delicious fruit that retains its flavor and nutrition when thawed.
Storing frozen mangoes
Proper storage is key to preserving the flavor and texture of frozen mangoes. Here are some tips:
- Place freezer bags or containers in the coldest part of the freezer, which is at 0°F or below.
- Avoid storing frozen mangoes in the fridge freezer, which runs warmer and can cause iciness.
- Arrange bags or containers in a single layer with space between to allow air circulation. This prevents freezing into a solid block.
- When taking mangoes in and out of the freezer, limit the time with the door open to prevent temperature fluctuations.
- Do not overstuff freezer bags, which can damage the produce. Leave 1 inch of headspace.
- Before resealing a freezer bag, squeeze out excess air and re-flatten the bag.
- Use rigid plastic containers or glass jars for firm, cube-shaped frozen mango pieces.
- Place older frozen mangoes towards the front of the freezer to ensure first-in, first-out use.
Following proper frozen food storage guidelines helps retain the flavor, texture, color, and nutrition of frozen mangoes.
Thawing frozen mangoes
Frozen mango can be thawed in several ways:
- In the refrigerator overnight, it works well for many uses, like baking or yogurt.
- On the countertop at room temperature for 1-2 hours.
- In a bowl of cool water for 30 minutes to an hour.
- In the microwave at 30-second intervals, stirring between.
- Under running, cool water for 10–20 minutes.
- Stir frozen mango directly into oatmeal, smoothies, or batters.
- Bake frozen mango chunks into muffins or cakes for up to 10 extra minutes.
No matter the method, thawed mangoes should be used immediately instead of refrozen for food safety and texture. With proper thawing, frozen mangoes retain their sweet flavor and juicy quality.
Frequently Asked Freezing Mango Questions
Freezing mango is easy, but there are some common questions about the proper methods:
How do you freeze mango chunks?
To freeze mango chunks, start by peeling and cutting the flesh into 1-inch pieces. Arrange in a single layer on a tray and freeze until solid. Transfer to airtight freezer bags or containers, removing excess air. Be sure to label and date the mangoes.
Can you freeze mango slices?
Yes, it is possible to freeze mango slices. Cut the cheeks off the pit into wedges or slices. Freeze in a single layer, then pack into freezer bags, squeezing out excess air. Seal tightly. Slices may stick together a bit when thawed.
Can you freeze mango puree?
You can freeze mango puree. Peel, pit, and slice mangoes. Blend in a food processor or blender until smooth. Pour into ice cube trays, muffin tins, or freezer bags. This makes it easy to pop out a single serving of mango puree at a time.
Is it better to freeze mangos peeled or unpeeled?
It is best to peel mangoes before freezing. The skins become tough and unpleasantly bitter when frozen. Peel eliminates this while also reducing the space needed for storage. Just be sure to fully cut away all of the fibrous peel and pit.
How long does frozen mango last?
In airtight freezer packaging, frozen mango will maintain optimal flavor and texture for 6–12 months. Frozen mango should not be kept for longer than one year, as quality deteriorates over time. Eat within a few days after thawing.
Freezing lets you enjoy delicious, ripe mangoes anytime. Follow the proper methods for preparing and storing cut fruit.
Use frozen mango in smoothies, desserts, salsas, chutneys, and more. With these freezing tips, you can savor tropical mango flavor all year round.
Hi, I’m Julie, the passionate foodie and founder of Juliesfamilykitchen.com. I created this blog out of a drive to prove someone wrong, and then I realized how much I truly enjoy cooking and trying new recipes. In my free time, when I’m not running around after my kids or spending quality time with my partner, you can usually find me in the kitchen experimenting with new dishes.