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Canned or Frozen?

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Canned or Frozen?
    Posted: 01 January 2014 at 13:07
This topic assumes that fresh and/or organic is better; there is no need to sing the praises of fresh, local garden or market produce, because as I look outside at the sub-zero, snow-drifted wasteland that was my garden earlier this year, it is painfully obvious that such a notion isn't a reality right now.

So, the produce aisle at the grocery aside, which is "better," canned or frozen vegetables (and, to a lesser extent fruits)?

I tend to prefer frozen due to the colour and perceived freshness, but they sure do have a lot of excess moisture, and sometimes have an off-taste or texture. Canned, on the other hand, usually has added salt (or sugar, in the case of fruit) and can in some cases have off-tastes and textures as well.

In the event you can't use fresh, which do you prefer, canned or frozen, and why - or under what circumstances?


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MarkR View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MarkR Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 January 2014 at 15:28
Frozen! Not processed if possible is betta.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 January 2014 at 16:52
Frozen has it all over canned by several orders of magnitude.

As with FAS fish, it has to do with speed of processing. Nowadays, much of the frozen produce is harvested, trimmed, washed, and flash frozen right there in the fields. Elapsed time: less than two hours.

It doesn't get much fresher than that.

You can deal with the excess moisture by defrosting the veggies slowly, in the fridge. Ideally, they're in a strainer with a bowl under it to catch the liquid.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gonefishin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 January 2014 at 17:05
   Frozen for fruits and vegetables in all instances but one...canned peas in chicken pot pie.  Otherwise frozen has it easily over canned!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rod Franklin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 January 2014 at 19:23
Frozen here, mostly. I try to find bags of vegetables that contain completely loose items in the bags. No frozen lumps. No lumps means no moisture loss and that the items remained very cold at all times. I always pick them up last and then put them in a Styrofoam shipping cooler for the ride home. Then they go right in the deep freeze at -18F.

I like some canned vegetables too. Beans, fruits and green beans. I like canned green beans.

The styrofoam shipping box came from a goodwill or someplace like it and it lives in the trunk of the car. I learned about that trick when I lived in Las Vegas. It's a pretty common tactic there where the trunk of a car could easily reach 150F+ in the summer while it sits in a parking lot.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hoser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 January 2014 at 01:07
Absolutely frozen....the only exceptions to this rule are canned tomatoes and sauce, and I will also use canned mushrooms from time to time.

You've got me thinking now....have to pick up some canned and dry goods this morning...we've got a whopper of a snowstorm on the way here in New England.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rod Franklin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 January 2014 at 07:04
I forgot about canned tomatoes and mushrooms.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gonefishin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 January 2014 at 10:04
    I also forgot about canned tomatoes 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Melissa Mead Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 January 2014 at 18:29
Frozen, except for tomatoes. Canned conjures up bad memories of hospital food. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote africanmeat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 January 2014 at 23:47
I prefer frozen .
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Melissa Mead Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 January 2014 at 17:41
There's a restaurant near me that serves some of the best food ever- except that they use canned veggies. Everything else is SO good, and then...canned vegetables?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AK1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 January 2014 at 15:16
I prefer frozen to canned.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AK1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 November 2014 at 17:46
Going back to this topic. I think the important thing to consider is the end use. If I want to saute or perhaps bake something, then IMO frozen is preferable. If I'm going to use the item in a stew or such then canned is good as well. For example, I bought a can of green beans once for a quick dish. Sauteed, the colour & texture weren't right. I think the beans would have been good in a vegetable stew though, just not in a sauteed dish.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2014 at 05:39
Mebbe so, Darko. But I think if you've ever had a bad experience with either form, then you gravitate to the other, no matter the end use.

In the past canned goods (this is before modern liners and coatings) almost always had an off flavor. In a word, they tasted tinny. As a result I avoided them for years. When frozen veggies started to be common I began using them. There were textural differences, brand to brand. But I never had one that tasted off.

Nowadays, as I stated above, flash frozen veggies are the next best thing to fresh. So, party due to long-standing bias, and partly due to real preference, I pretty much stick to frozen.

I would probably use commercial canned tomato products, except that I put up enough every fall to last us until fresh tomatoes are available again.

I realize, too, that the rare times we buy commercially prepared baked beans that I get them in jars rather than cans, likely due to the same bias.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Percebes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2014 at 14:57
My go to-favorite canned vegetable is potatoes.

I use them for my vegetable shish kebobs on the BBQ
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AK1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2014 at 21:09
That's something I've never seen.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Myticriver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 April 2015 at 23:51
Canned foods have chemicals added to the interior of the can. Frozen foods, if fresh when frozen, have a similarity to fresh. Frozen pineapple for instance, tastes great and is very healthy for you. Frozen pizza, not so much.

If you are wanting to eat either canned fruits/veggies or frozen fruits and veggies, frozen is the better choice.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 April 2015 at 07:13
Considering the chemical laden, unripe, so-called fresh produce available in the supermarkets, Myticriver, the last thing I'd be concerned with is the food-safe liners used in cans.

The fact is, however, that your basic point is correct. When it comes to quality and flavor, frozen is the way to go over cans most of the time.

More than 30 years ago, when I was editing Package Enginnering magazine, one of the food-science universities (I want to say Rutgers, but really ain't sure) did a study comparing the total worth of canned vs frozen vs fresh vegetables. Factors included the complete energy footprint, waste disposal, and similar issues, as well as food quality. In the summer, fresh won it hands down, followed by frozen, and then canned. The authors mentioned, semi-tongue in cheek, that they wanted to repeat the study in the winter, but, unfortunately, one of the variables wasn't available.

That was long before the food distribution system was what it is today. I would suggest that, if repeated today, "fresh" veggies would come in last, especially in the winter.
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