Pick Your Own Strawberries

Our haul this morning: 21lbs of strawberries.  Some of these will be:

::: eaten in the next few days

::: turned into a yummy dessert ( wanna share your favorite recipe using strawberries?)

::: frozen to be enjoyed through the next few months in delicious strawberry/banana smoothies

I would try to make preserves but after three failed tries in the past years, I have given up on that.

I love going to pick your own farms not only to get fruit cheaper but also because it is free family entertainment and free food sometimes! haha!

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Comments

  • Elizabeth

    We’ve made three batches of a version of this recipe in the last two days.

    http://www.eatingoutloud.com/2009/06/strawberry-cornmeal-muffins.html#more-2955

    My changes were replacing half of the AP flour with WW flour and replacing the oil with applesauce. Absolutely fantastic!!

  • Would you mind sharing how much the 21 lbs ended up costing?

    • Hi Julia,

      we ended up paying $1.25 per lb. That’s about the going rate for pick your own frams around here. I know some people will say that you could get strawberries cheaper than that when on sale but I would have to say they just don’t taste the same. Also, like I mentioned it serves as family entertainment.

      Mercedes

  • Mary

    What kinds of fruits or vegetables you freeze for the winter months and how do you go about doing this?

    • Hi Mary,

      I have frozen blueberries, strawberries, Brussels sprouts, green peppers, onions and spinach.
      For everything I use the vacuum sealer. It’s awesome and I follow the guidelines in the Ball Blue Book of Preserving.

      For tomatoes form my garden I usually make tomato sauce and freeze that way. When there’s so much zucchini to go around I cubed and froze and used to make soup in the winter. same can be applied to any squash.

      Mercedes

  • Delores

    Freezer jam is pretty easy. Just crush instead of use the blender. Otherwise it is just too runny for it to really set well. It’s freezer jam and won’t be exactly like regular jam, but still good. We put it in our oatmeal. We made this strawberry brownie trifle: http://www.recipezaar.com/Brownie-Strawberry-Trifle-94475 with our leftover berries. Awesome. Especially because with all the deals I actually had the ingredients on hand! I love stockpiling. 🙂 Enjoy your yummy berries!

  • Angie

    We can check this off our list for this year too. My parents went and picked 36lbs. The next day they went back so they could take my son (3) to get a few more and ended up picking 53lbs. more for a total of 90lbs. Yes! 90 lbs!!!!

    Our freezers are stocked.

  • Conni

    How fun! I remember doing this with my kids when they were young. They would eat their way through the berry fields!! Always figured they (the kids) should be weighed before and after they entered the field for the final U-pick price!! LOL!!! Enjoy those berries!

  • I was just thinking this week that we should look for a berry farm around here and go do that. I know my kids would have fun. My daughter LOVES strawberries.

    As for freezing, I freeze all kinds of soft fruits to use in smoothies. And I freeze peppers when I get a real good sale on them. I used to throw everything in a ziplock, which made it kind of a pain when it came to using it…especially the fruit. I’d pound on it with a knife handle until I get a chunk off. Then I read on someone else’s blog to spread it out on a cookie sheet and freeze for 2-3 hrs before putting in the bag. (duh!) MUCH better. It doesn’t stick together, so much easier to grab a few pieces and throw it in a smoothie.

  • Mary

    How do you prepare the strawberries for freezing? I would assume you hull them and wash them off. Do you cut them up or freeze them whole?

    • Hi Mary,

      I washed them and hulled them. then I waited for them to dry out. Then I put them in cookie sheets and out in the freezer overnight. I just finished bagging them using my foodsaver. I didn’t cut them in pieces because I was afraid the juice would make the strawberries stick to the cookie tray and also because I feel there could be more risk of freezer burn.

      Mercedes

  • maria

    I do freezer jellies/jams too. I had never done it before and did it with my blueberries recently and was shocked how easy it was compared to regular jarring. Plus there is no extra expense with speical jars/lids etc.

    Love it!

  • Laurie

    All-natural, pectin-free preserves!
    I made amazing preserves, perfect consistency and taste, and my 1st time ever! I learned you do not have to can them, and web sources say they’ll be good in the fridge for 6 mos. Here’s what I did:
    -6 c. strawberries, washed, hulled (a few berries should be only partially ripe as those unripe berries contain the most pectin, helping to set the preserves)
    -2 c. sugar (or less, to taste)
    -1 T. grated lemon zest (helps to set the preserves if you don’t have enough unripened berries)
    Put all in a pan (of at least 3 times the volume), bring to a boil while mashing berry mixture. Boil 5 min. then strain fruit from the syrup using a seive (really press it into the seive to get all the juice out) and then set fruit aside. Return syrup to pan and add 2 T lemon juice, and boil about 22-25 min (full boil) stirring constantly. Then return fruit to pan and bring just to a boil. Remove from heat and pour into jars. Can it or just enjoy out of the fridge, but this stuff is AWESOME! Enjoy 🙂

  • Michelle

    Where are you picking strawberries? What town?

  • Kathy

    You can visit http://www.pickyourown.org/ to find pick-your-own farms in your area. Select your state and then your local area, and off you go. This includes all fruits and vegetables and not just strawberries.

  • Make some Strawberry Bread. I found this recipe online somewhere and its become a huge hit around here. The bread also freezes very well.

    Strawberry Bread

    2 c. Strawberries (sliced)
    3 1/8 c. Flour
    2 c. Sugar
    1 Tbsp. Cinnamon
    1 Tsp. Salt
    1 Tsp. Baking Soda
    1 ¼ c. Oil
    4 Eggs

    Slice strawberries and set aside with little bit of sugar on top.
    Mix flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt, and baking soda.
    Beat eggs, then combine oil and strawberries.
    Combine flour mixture into strawberry mixture (don’t use a beater).
    Split mixture in between 2 bread pans.
    Bake at 350 degrees approx. 45-50 minutes.

  • This strawberry pretzel dessert is an absolute favorite at our house! http://amysfinerthings.com/dessert-for-salad

  • Grace

    We have a strawberry pretzel dessert much like Amy’s it is WONDERFUL! I also enjoy canning but I was told my Mom a few days ago that she likes my freezer jam better than the canned. Laurie’s recipe is basically the same as the one I used. You can do this with about any fruit! They’re great! So much better for you that the stuff out of the stores! I freeze mine in the square freezer containers they last forever. We just pull what ever flavor we want at the time out of the freezer when we empty a container.

    We have a lady just out of town that runs a business out of her home. Well it’s her garage, she sends out emails to let you know what shipments she has coming, you order what you want and go pick it up the day it arrives! It’s fresh and cheaper than the grocery store. It comes in BULK which is great for our family, (I’m the oldest of 5 kids.) (and you don’t have to spend the time picking when you’re just to busy.) We just love it when Mom and Dad bring home a big box of Binge Cherries!

    We also freeze our peppers out of the garden, we clean them up, chop them and then put them in muffin pans, this way they freeze in clumps that are about 1/2 cup chopped peppers! Perfect for most recipes!

  • Thanks a lot for sharing

  • Pilar @ ScoringDeals

    Hi Mercedes,

    Seems like your little one had a lot of fun! He looks super cute! Thanks for sharing!

  • Ashley

    I have been a loyal reader for quite a few months now. I found your wonderful website through Money Saving Mom. I’ve never commented, but today I thought I’d help you out (if I can) since you’ve helped me out so much. My suggestion is trying freezer jam. That’s what we do with our strawberries and raspberries when we get a smoking deal on them. It’s really quite simple and affordable. The recipe I use is in the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook, but I’m sure you could Google it, or find a good one on All Recipes. The recipe I use is something like 4 cups strawberries, 4 (yes, FOUR!!!) cups sugar, 1 package pectin, and 1 tsp. lemon zest. (Last time I was out of lemons so I omitted the zest and it was just fine.) Let me know if you want the rest of the recipe, and I can scan it and e-mail it to you. Best of luck, and thanks for all your helpful money-saving hints!