Looking for ways to use up fresh blueberries?
One of my favorite parts of summer is going to the local U-Pick orchard for fresh blueberries. We love going early in the morning because it’s still fairly cool out. My little ones just run up and down the rows of blueberries and eat as much as they want.
But, when we get those berries home, we always bring home way too much for us to eat! So, what to do with all those extra fresh blueberries?
Well, in this post, I’m going to discuss:
- 19 Ways to use up fresh blueberries before they go bad.
- And I’m going to share some fantastic fresh blueberry recipes with you.
- I’m also going to give some preservation tips, such as freezing blueberries (My Favorite).
- Finally, I’m going to cover the art of growing blueberries and why I don’t grow them on our farmstead.
So, let’s start with the art of creating a yummy sticky jam that will add new spark to your PB & J’s!
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The following few ways are some simple recipes you can make and can with blueberries. You want your blueberries to stay fresh but these are also fine ideas when you’re stuck on what to do with blueberries about to go bad.
For safe, quality canning recipes, I use my trusty Ball Blue Book. Go ahead and purchase the latest one here.
Now, for the jam…
Super sticky but not icky! Very very yummy on toast or even french toast.
Jam is pretty easy to make and also to can.
Blueberry Pie Filling
One of my all-time favorite pies is blueberry and I enjoy canning a blueberry pie filling.
It can also be used for cobblers, crumbles and turnovers as well.
Again, I’m referring you to the Ball Blue Book for an amazing blueberry pie filling recipe.
Syrup & Ice Cream Sauce
My daughter’s favorite. She’s an ice cream junkie.
And blueberry sauce is so delicious on this ice cream. Again, I use Ball for the majority of my safe canning. Including this ice cream sauce recipe.
So, I’ve given you a few canning recipes to try via the Ball Blue book. But maybe you’d rather have some dried blueberries? That’s the next section!
Dehydrate for snacks
Have you every had dried blueberries? They make awesome snacks in mixes, on top of ice cream or just by themselves.
Dehydrating blueberries is really simple. It just takes time until you have a delicious snack that all ages love. All you need to do is get out your dehydrator and follow the directions. I say this because each dehydrator is different.
Also, you can continue to check on them and dry them at just the right consistency that you like.
Dry Freezing Blueberries
Here it is! My favorite way to preserve fresh blueberries to use later. Here are the steps I take for freezing blueberries:
- First of all, wash the blueberries.
- Lay them out to dry on a towel.
- Cover baking sheets with waxed paper.
- Set dry, washed blueberries on the waxed paper. Try not to allow them to touch.
- Stick baking sheets in the freezer for a few hours or until completely frozen.
- Finally, take out the baking sheets and remove blueberries into freezer bags.
- Freeze for up to a year.
This is so easy and takes almost no time to keep blueberries fresh. Later, when you want to use blueberries, pull these bags out. You should be able to take the amount out that you want, thaw and use accordingly.
Or you can simply just eat them frozen! Add them into smoothies for a tasty treat.
Add to ice cubes for pretty drinks.
If you have smaller blueberries or even blueberry juice, add them to our ice cube trays.
Fill ice cube trays with fruit and juice or fruit and water. Stick in the freezer until fully frozen.
Then, add to any drink you’d like. I have another section for infused drinks, so keep reading.
Make Pies & Freeze Unbaked
Remember that blueberry pie filling we canned up above? Well, instead of canning the filling, go ahead and make a pie.
Yes, make pies now and then freeze them unbaked. Then, when you’re ready for a pie, there will be one waiting for you in your freezer.
It’s really kind of like shopping the freezer section of the grocery store. Only it’s in your home. How cool is that?
Craving a fresh dessert? Blueberry cobbler is a delicious idea for dessert or an afternoon snack (Tea if you’re in England).
Blueberry Coffee Cake
Another option for dessert of snack with coffee is a blueberry coffee cake. Yum! Making me hungry.
In need of a healthy cool treat? Add blueberries in to your favorite smoothie recipe.
My kids love these DIY popcycles. There’s lots of different ways to make them so do a Google search to find a recipe you’re kiddos will love.
Blueberry juice is full of natural antioxidants that keep you healthy. So, why not squeeze the juice from the berries and drink the juice straight?
You can either use the rest of the berry blended into a smoothie or feed it to your chickens.
You could also make a blueberry butter.
This is another fun thing that should have gone up with the canning section. It’s pretty new to me, but there is a recipe in the Ball Blue Book for this blueberry butter.
I’m excited to try this recipe and get back to you. Let me know if you try it, too.
Infuse into drinks
Staying hydrated through the summer is extremely important. So, why not add in a few blueberries to hydrating drinks such as water, lemonade & tea?
You can just splash them in directly.
Or you can purchase a cool infuser cup if you don’t want the fruit directly into your drink.
Enjoy in Pancakes
A classic way to enjoy blueberries is to cook them inside pancakes. Simply add them to your pancake batter by the handful. As much or as little as you want.
Then, cook your pancakes all the way through. Your blueberries will be oozing out the ends. Yummy.
Another classic. Again, add blueberries by the handful to your muffin batter and mix thoroughly.
Fill greased muffin tins and bake. Enjoy!
A new idea I will be trying. Have you made blueberry scones before? Leave me a comment with a recipe for me to try!
Additive in Jello
My little girls love this and it makes a great dessert after lunch. Or sometimes I catch them eating it from the bowl in the middle of the day…Oops!
Oh well…better than other things they could be eating!
So, here’s what you need to jello with blueberries. Be careful not to blink or you’ll miss it…
Make the jell-o according to the directions on the box. Pour it into a bowl and quickly mix in blueberries. Set in the fridge overnight.
Finally, top with whipped cream. Keep in the fridge for a quick snack.
Topping for Cereal
In my opinion, the best cereal to top with blueberries is Honey Nut Cheerios or Grape Nuts. You can also mix it in with dry cereal for a snack.
If you love overnight oats or instant oatmeal, add in some blueberries for even more goodness.
Enjoy by the handful
There’s no better or faster way to use up blueberries than to simply enjoy them by the handful! And we do. Blueberries don’t stay around our place long. It’s a wonder we don’t grow them as much as we love them!
Now, here’s why I don’t grow blueberries anywhere on our farmstead.
Why I Don’t Grow Blueberries
The main reason I don’t grow blueberries is because it’s sort of difficult to manage the soil pH in my area. They require a certain type of soil pH in order to grow well. It needs to be acidic (4.8-5.2)
My soil pH is generally in the 6-7 range. Way too high for growing blueberries naturally.
Now, amending the soil properties to make it blueberry-ready would be very possible for me. Adjusting the pH takes time…years…to achieve. I would need to add in sulfur to lower the pH of my soil to hit that 5 range. Along with that, many soil tests would need to happen to ensure that the pH is at the correct range for blueberries.
So, I take the easy way out…At least for right now. Maybe someday I will amend the soil and start growing a blueberry patch. But now, I prefer to visit a local U-Pick Blueberry Patch.
Just because you or I don’t grow blueberries ourselves doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy them fresh!
So, Enjoy this Fresh Fruit of Summer Any Way You Want
I’ve given you 19 ways to use up fresh blueberries. In that list there should be at least one way that jumps out to you.
From Canning to Freezing blueberries to enjoying fresh off the plants, blueberries are a fresh taste of summer that shouldn’t be wasted. Do you have favorite fresh blueberry recipes that I didn’t include? Let me know in the comments what that is!
And I hope you enjoy sweet summertime…and blueberries, too.
~ Much Love ~
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