Got some leftovers from a big batch of pico de gallo you just whipped up? Confused and wondering- can you freeze pico de gallo for later?
Well, here's answering just that and more! Read on to get a quick gist of everything you need to know about freezing pico de gallo, storing it in the refrigerator and tips to thaw and use it again- the right way.
How Do You Keep Pico de Gallo Fresh?
The best way to keep your homemade pico de gallo fresh for a longer time is to make sure it is made with fresh diced ingredients.
Remember to use good quality ingredients to make pico de gallo, and if you have any leftovers, store them carefully. Just like guacamole or any fresh salsa, you'll need to try and minimize its exposure to air, which can cause it to spoil faster.
Salsa and pico de gallo are best stored in an airtight container and refrigerated until they are ready to be served. Refrigeration helps slow down bacterial growth by bringing down the temperature, and helps improve its shelf life.
Another great idea to implement is to squeeze some fresh lime juice into the dish. Doing this not only enhances the flavor, but also ensures that all the ingredients get coated with the lime, which in turn, acts as a kind of a natural preservative.
What Is the Best Way to Store Salsa Fresca?
The best way to store pico de gallo and salsa is to transfer it to a clean jar or a container, and top it with an airtight lid.
The idea is to seal in the freshness and keep the pico de gallo from being exposed to air, which can cause it to deteriorate faster. Using a good quality airtight container to store the pico de gallo will help it last in the fridge for a longer time.
Pico de gallo is a delicious salsa made from fresh ingredients and is super easy to make too. This is why, it is best to make and serve pico de gallo fresh.
How Long Will Pico de Gallo Last in the Fridge?
You can store pico de gallo in the fridge for up to 3 days, if not more. Since it uses fresh ingredients, the exact duration can vary. Unlike jarred salsa, this one won't last weeks in the fridge.
Even if you do end up using the best tomatoes for this recipe, and choose ingredients in their peak freshness and take steps to preserve the ingredients, pico de gallo salsa won't last beyond 7 days in the refrigerator.
Is It Ok to Freeze Pico de Gallo?
While pico de gallo can be frozen to extend its shelf life, it is usually not recommended unless absolutely necessary.
The reason is pretty obvious. Traditional pico de gallo is a type of salsa which uses fresh vegetables, which have high water content. During the freezing process, these vegetables start to release water, lose their texture and become mushy.
You can choose to freeze the pico de gallo in a sealed container or bag, ideally a freezer safe one, and it should last you for about 3 months.
Remember that the consistency of the fresh pico de gallo may be different from that of the frozen version. As long as it smells and tastes great, you don't have to worry about it.
How Do You Defrost Pico de Gallo?
Frozen pico de gallo can be kept in the refrigerator overnight and allowed to thaw completely before serving the next day.
You can also add a bit of salt to make the flavors of this chunky and versatile dip more vibrant.
Although freezing is a good way to ensure the safety of your salsa fresca, you may want to still be sure if the salsa is safe before you go ahead and serve it.
Recommended Read: Jalapeno Pineapple Salsa
What to Do With Frozen Pico de Gallo?
Frozen and thawed pico de gallo can be used as a topping for tacos, or teamed up with some tortilla chips or enchiladas.
The versatility of the pico gallo makes it such a great recipe to try your hands at if you've been looking to experiment with Mexican cuisine.
It's typically made using tomato, onion, cilantro, pepper, chili pepper and other all-natural ingredients, and is actually a delicious and healthy dip that you can put together without cooking!
How Long Is Pico de Gallo Safe to Eat?
Pico de Gallo is usually safe to eat within 3 to 5 days when stored properly in the refrigerator. You can use any good quality storage container to store the salsa.
To make it last longer, you can core and de seed the tomato you're using for the recipe, and use fresh onion and other ingredients. It's important to remove as much moisture as you possibly can- you don't want to freeze the pico de gallo while it still has a lot of liquid.
I would also recommend skipping the lime juice if you're planning to freeze pico de gallo- you can always add it in later.
Another great idea I would recommend is to chop the ingredients in larger bits and pieces.
How Do You Keep Pico de Gallo From Getting Watery?
Any kind of salsa or pico de gallo will start to lose water when frozen, and will end up being much thinner in consistency as compared to its fresh version. Remember that any dish that uses fresh fruits and vegetables is bound to lose its structural integrity and texture when it is stored for long.
That said, you can take a couple of steps to make the pico de gallo hold its shape better, even after it has frozen and thawed.
First, you can choose to use a freezer bag or a freezer safe container to freeze your pico de gallo. Doing this will ensure that there is no freezer burn.
Another important tip to implement is to use fresh tomatoes and make sure all the excess liquid has drained from the tomatoes and the other ingredients before you put everything together.
How Do You Know if Pico de Gallo Has Gone Bad?
The best way to check for the freshness of any type of salsa is to check for its texture, taste, color and smell. If any of these seem off to you, or if you notice the salsa turn mushy, it might be a sign that the pico de gallo has gone bad.
If the taste and the smell seem fine to you, but you're only concerned about the watery texture of the salsa, don't be worried. The Mexican salsa will probably still be safe to eat, and the watery texture is simply the result of natural juices from the salsa releasing all the excess water with time.
Can I Microwave the Salsa?
Well, this one totally depends on your personal preference.
Any salsa made with fresh ingredients will lose its texture and might become extra juicy and watery when frozen or microwaved, or both.
But if you're looking to get it thawed quickly, or want to serve it at room temperature, it can be a great option to consider. Just remember not to overdo it, or you'll ruin the texture of the salsa.