Eat Home Grown Bell Peppers Year Round – Even In The North

freeze bell peppers

Look at those delicious home grown Bell Peppers! OMG, they taste so ridiculously good!

Sliced frozen peppers in Quart-size Ziploc Freezer bags. We keep sacks of them in one of our chest freezers. Peppers all year long – even in the North!

This year we’re growing more Bell Peppers than last year. In fact if my calculations are right, we’ll be able to consume at least 3 of these Quart-size bags of peppers each of the 52 weeks in the upcoming year! Actually, it may be more than that, given the looks of our pepper plants right now (they’re doing great).

We planted 48 “New Ace” Bell Pepper plants in one of our raised beds (16′ x 4′). We almost lost them due to a frost during the first week of June!

Here’s a picture during early June:

Here’s a picture from today, about one month later:

Here’s how many peppers I hope to harvest, based on last years yield:

Final product (cleaned and sliced)

Each pepper plants will yield (at least) 2 pounds
3 Quart-size bags of sliced peppers per plant (~11 oz each bag on average)

So, 48 plants should yield about 100 pounds final product. That’s about 144 Quart-size Ziploc bags. That comes out to ~ 3 bags per week consumption for a year. Nice!

Based on the looks of how well these pepper plants are doing right now, we may exceed those estimates. Time will tell. I don’t want to jinx myself!

As a side note, I like to freeze my peppers after cutting them into strips. Why? Because they taste great. I could dehydrate (and I may do that with some this year). But I simply prefer the frozen product texture and flavor of peppers. My typical usage is to pan-fry them (with some onion or whatever). Often used with our home-canned chicken as a stir-fry meal. Yum!

It will take some significant chest freezer space this year (which I don’t have enough of right now!). And it looks like most all chest freezers are sold out everywhere I look (thanks to Coronavirus panic buying). In the mean time, we need to consume more food from our “veggie” chest freezer before harvest time – to free up some space…

Anyway, I wanted to point out how you can grow enough peppers to last a year – even in the North Country. And oh-boy they sure taste better than store bought! Plus at ~ $4/pound at the grocery store during winter – I’m looking at an equivalent of about $400 from my home grown. Not bad…

I can’t go wrong with these freezer bags for about 11-cents each (as of this post),

Ziploc Double Zipper Quart Freezer Bags, 216 Count by Ziploc
(view on amzn)

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24 Comments

  1. Those pepper plants look good. Looks like they bounced back really nice after the frost.

  2. They do look nice. I love peppers all ways. We make a pickled relish from an old ball book that is fantastic and easy using almost equal amounts diced peppers onions and cukes with sugar apple cider vinegar dill and mustard seed. Another good use for excess peppers.

  3. One good way to freeze them is to prepare then place on a parchment paper in the freezer on a cookie sheet until frozen hard then put in bags and store in the freezer. This way you can open a bag and use what you need without defrosting the whole bag. We freeze mainly diced peppers but it should work equally well for slices.

  4. I had an extremely hard time growing green peppers from seed this year. After replanting 3 times I finally got ONE to go. Sheesh!

    When I went to local co-op and hardware store to buy the Bonnie Plants – none to be had.

    Finally found the last six plants at a feed store a town over.

    FYI in a book I got on saving seed came the following comment:

    Only in America do people eat the pepper green, which is the immature fruit. All other cultures allow the pepper to ripen to a mature stage of red (or other colors).

    Ken, your peppers look wonderful !!!

    1. Oh thanks grandee! I planted 3 pepper plants and was told to leave the green peppers on the plant and they would then ripen to red peppers. I like the taste of the red peppers better.

      Like Ken, I almost lost them to a frost and once they survived that, I almost lost them once again to the puppy mutilating them. But those plants are hardy and they came back even from the puppy!

    2. grandee,
      If we don’t get an early frost (which we almost always do – 1st week of September), then they’ll turn reddish. Some do anyway (those that bloom earliest). But mostly we get green peppers due to that darn killing frost in early September where I live.

      1. Use hoops and row cover to keep them going through a frost. Usually up north in our region we get a frost followed by several weeks of nice weather; just have to make it through that first frost!

    3. Apparently, the “fact” that all the peppers are the same is actually not true. According to Insider, CallMeAmy, a lifestyle blogger, tweeted this out a couple of years ago, it went viral, and news sites picked up on it without fact checking. (You can still find these articles all over.) While the green peppers you eat MAY be the unripe red ones, they may actually truly be green peppers. This is why you find different seeds in seed catalogs. Some peppers never get past green, yellow, orange, or even purple; this is their fully ripe color. Red peppers do go through the color stages, and they are often picked at the green stage, before the farmers have to worry about insects and diseases getting them.

      I had to look this up; I’d heard it before but wasn’t sure if it was true or not.

      1. So most peppers turn into a color when they are fully ripe(and sweet). Some will be red, orange, yellow etc. They are all sweet peppers of varying kinds but different varieties. When I farmed I grew peppers that turned into all sorts of colors when ripe.

    4. Very nice. We’ve had a great spring garden. Our summer garden has not faired as well with it hitting 108 degrees today. I can state I grew potatoes for the first time and they will now be added to our rotation in the garden.

  5. Your pepper plants look very happy! I, too, had planned on growing a boatload of peppers, which we love to eat; however, something ate every.single.leaf off of all my plants, despite my best efforts at figuring out what it was. No home grown peppers this year, unless I can get some in my hydroponics setup. That’s just the way it goes in gardening.

  6. Hi Ken,
    How’d you freeze your peppers. I did the last of my crop last year, just sliced them and put them in the freezer. When I went to use them , they had gone bad, slimy and smelled really bad. No power outages and freezer was (is) working fine.Someone told me I should have blanched them first. Thanks in advance for any advice
    PS couldn’t do the whole crop as the grands(and we) were always eating them up as fast as they got ripe LOL.

    1. granny,
      We simply core out the seeds, then slice strips length-wise. Straight into the freezer bags and chest freezer at 15-below-zero-F

      When thawed, they taste as good as fresh.

      1. Thank you I used the refrigerator freezer, didn’t have that many left. This year I’ll get them in the chest freezer when I get them cut up and see how they do. Appreciate the info.

    2. Granny O,
      I cut some of mine into strips and I dice some of them. The only prep I do is wash them and cut out the seeds, patting them dry before I put them in the bags. I can easily pull out just what I need from the Ziploc bag and then reseal the rest. I tried putting some in Food Saver bags last fall for the first time; bad idea! They were slimy, and I had to thaw the whole bag at once.

  7. We mostly dice and freeze jalepenos and poblano peppers. Great for quick quesadillas and nachos. We do chop and freeze some red/green peppers (King of the North); they are a thick-walled pepper and I use them mainly in chilis, on pizzas and such. I read somewhere that if a pepper has three bumps on the bottom it will be a thin-walled pepper, and if it has four bumps it will be a thick-walled pepper.

    Your peppers look great Ken!!!

  8. Nice garden Mr. K, we do chopped onions the same way, but have to buy Bell peppers ( which we also freeze) as the bugs here like’m too much. We do have Jalapeno peppers which I both freeze or dehydrate. The bugs don’t like them.
    I got a new dehydrator today and did 3 Butternut squash, them vacuum packed them in jars for winter soup later.

  9. Last year I tried dehydrating some bell peppers and store them in a jar. I like this better for soups and stews.

  10. Fine looking pepper plants. I freeze mine the same way and there is a great feeling, both mentally and physically, you get when in January/February you are eating food that you grew in your own garden. It makes the hard work worth the while.

  11. Thank you all for the info. I think part of my problem was I put them in the food saver bags and in the refrigerator freezer not my chest freezer.

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