When you purchase any of Tommy’s Superfoods frozen vegetable medleys, we recommend you follow the cooking instructions on the back of each package for the best tasting results. Because each of our products feature unique seasonings and ingredient pairings, some need to cooked in the oven, while others prefer heating in the microwave or stove top – and because we’ve tested (and regularly eat!) all of our offerings, we know the easiest and most flavorful ways to bring each one to the dinner table!
However, there may be times when you have frozen vegetables that don’t offer clear cooking directions. What then?
Here are some quick and easy tips to remember for steaming frozen vegetables:
It is not necessary to defrost frozen vegetables before cooking. If you choose to defrost (some frozen vegetables may have excess water that you do not wish to add to your recipe), allow the frozen vegetables to defrost in your refrigerator until they are no longer frozen.
Do not boil your frozen vegetables as this can reduce the naturally-occurring water-soluble vitamins they contain.
Why You Should Steam Your Frozen Vegetables
Steaming frozen vegetables – especially vegetables such as frozen broccoli, peas, carrots, cauliflower, or spinach – is the most effective way to maintain important nutrients and good flavor. It’s also a very quick and simple process that won’t take more than a few minutes of your time.
Steaming on the Stovetop
When steaming on the stovetop, you want to place just two or three inches of water at the very bottom of your pot or pan. Once the water has come to a boil, place a steaming basket or sieve over the water – making sure that the basket is above the boiling water. If necessary, remove a bit of the water. Once your basket or sieve is in place, add your frozen vegetables and then cover the pot or pan with a lid.
Cooking times will vary depending on the vegetables you are cooking, frozen vegetables such as zucchini or sweet peppers only need 2-4 minutes of steaming, whereas root vegetables such as sliced potatoes may need in excess of 12 minutes. Here’s a chart with some of the delicious veggies you can find in our medleys.
Steaming in the Microwave
When you steam your vegetables correctly you’ll enjoy better tasting and healthier food. But what if cooking by microwave is the only available option? No worries! Using a microwave-safe dish, put just a small amount of water in the bottom (typically, half a tablespoon should suffice) and then place the frozen vegetables on top of the water, and then cover with a lid. The small amount of water you added will create a “steam effect” inside the container and after only a few minutes, your vegetables should be cooked through and ready to serve.
Preparing Frozen Vegetables Without Steam
While we have long recommended steaming your frozen vegetables, recently we are moving away from this recommendation. Instead, we would say try sauteeing or roasting your frozen vegetables to maintain their taste and texture. Click here to read more about how you can prepare your frozen vegetables without steam.
Enjoy Your Frozen Veggies
Frozen vegetables, be they from Tommy’s Superfoods, or vegetables you froze from your own garden are a convenient and delicious way to add healthy choices to your diet and reduce the amount of food waste you generate. Whether it’s following the directions on the side of our package, or using these steaming guidelines, with a little care, you and your family are certain to enjoy a delicious meal that will leave them asking for more.