Ideas for Using Fresh Garden Cucumbers and What to do with Cucumbers!
We love fresh garden cucumbers and they are definitely one of our favorite summertime vegetables. But what to do when your garden starts to produce more cucumbers than you have ideas for using them?
Even if you don’t have a summer garden that is producing baskets and baskets of fresh cucumber, there are Farmers Markets popping up just about everywhere that sell freshly picked delicious cucumbers.
How Long to Fresh Cucumbers Last?
A fresh uncut cucumber will last about a week and the best place to store a whole cucumber is right on your kitchen counter. If you wash and cut the cucumber, it needs to go in the refrigerator in an airtight container and should be used in about 3-4 days.
If you are making salads for work – store the cut cucumbers separate from the lettuce and other salad fixings. In the morning, throw together your salad in your favorite container. Your salad will stay fresh and crisp!
Can You Freeze Cucumbers from The Garden?
Yes, you can freeze cucumbers to use later. Make sure to wash your cucumbers and let dry. Slice the cucumbers and lay on a baking sheet. Freeze for a couple of hours and then pop the frozen cucumbers into freezer bags. You can either freeze the cucumbers peeled or unpeeled.
It’s important to note that the texture and flavor of the cucumbers may be affected by the freezing process. Cucumbers are mostly made up of water, and freezing can cause the water to expand and rupture the cells, resulting in a softer, mushy texture when thawed.
That being said, if you have an abundance of cucumbers from your garden and you’d like to freeze them, here are some tips:
Always Slice the cucumbers: Before freezing, slice the cucumbers into the desired size and shape. Slicing will help them freeze faster and make them easier to thaw and use later on.
Blanche the cucumbers: Blanching the cucumbers for a few seconds in boiling water can help preserve their color and texture. After blanching, quickly cool the cucumbers in ice water before patting them dry.
Pack and freeze: Place the sliced and blanched cucumbers in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze for a few hours until solid. Once frozen, transfer the cucumbers to an airtight container or freezer bag, removing as much air as possible to prevent freezer burn.
Thaw and use: When you’re ready to use the frozen cucumbers, thaw them in the refrigerator overnight or in a bowl of cold water. Use the thawed cucumbers in soups, stews, or smoothies, where their texture won’t be as noticeable.
Overall, while freezing cucumbers may not be the best option for preserving their texture and flavor, it can be a good way to reduce food waste and save some of your garden produce for later use!
How many Calories are in a Cucumber?
Cucumbers are very low in calories with only about 20 calories a cup. They’re also low in fat and a good source of vitamin C and vitamin K. Cucumbers are made up of 96% water so they can add additional delicious hydration in the hot summer months!
Eating Cucumbers helps Add More Water to Your Diet
Did you know that cucumbers are made up of mostly water? Read – 10 Quick Ways to Eat Your Water
What is one of The Easiest Ways to Eat Cucumber?
Easy Cucumbers & Tomatoes – We love to take advantage of summer produce on a daily basis and eat raw chunks of cucumber mixed with chunks of garden fresh tomatoes. Just toss together 1/4 cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, 1 tsp minced garlic and 1/2 tsp salt and mix with the cucumber and tomatoes. Eat over a bed of lettuce or in a big bowl. Lightly sprinkle with fresh black pepper.
Removing Seeds from Your Cucumbers:
Some people do not enjoy the taste of cucumber seeds and they do make whatever dish you are preparing a little more watery. Watch this video to see how easy it is to remove cucumber seeds.
What Else To Do with Fresh Cucumbers
Fresh cucumbers are a versatile and nutritious ingredient that can be used in a variety of ways. Here are a few ideas for what to do with fresh cucumbers:
Make a salad – Cucumbers are a classic ingredient in salads. Try slicing them thinly and tossing them with some cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, and a simple vinaigrette for a refreshing and healthy salad.
Make a dip – Cucumbers can also be used to make a delicious and healthy dip. Try blending diced cucumbers with some Greek yogurt, garlic, and fresh herbs for a refreshing dip that pairs well with veggies, pita chips, or crackers.
Add them to sandwiches – Sliced cucumbers make a great addition to sandwiches, adding crunch and refreshing flavor. Try adding them to a turkey or veggie sandwich for a healthy and delicious lunch.
Make a refreshing drink – Cucumbers can be used to make a refreshing drink. Try blending cucumbers with water, mint, and lime juice for a delicious and healthy summer beverage.
Make pickles – Cucumbers can be used to make pickles, which can be a great addition to sandwiches, burgers, or as a side dish. Try making a quick pickle by slicing cucumbers and marinating them in vinegar, sugar, and spices for a few hours or overnight.
Overall, there are many delicious and healthy ways to use fresh cucumbers in your cooking. Experiment with different recipes and see what you like best!
Here are some salad ideas using fresh cucumbers:
Sliced Cucumber and Feta Cheese salad
Mix together cucumber and feta cheese tossed with your favorite zippy Italian dressing. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and a little oregano.
Simple Watermelon, Cucumber and Feta Salad
Watermelon, cut into chunks
feta cheese, cut into cubes
1 small red onion, finely sliced
1 small cucumber, peeled and cut into half moons
For the dressing
1/4 of a cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons sugar
salt and pepper to taste
Toss the watermelon, feta cheese, onion and cucumber into a medium bowl. Mix together the dressing and pour over the salad. Toss well to mix.
Shrimp, Egg and Cucumber Salad
Some Additional Cucumber Recipes that We Love
If you want to make a pretty cucumber salad you definitely want to purchase a mandoline!
Delicious and Fresh Cucumber Salad
2 medium cucumbers, thinly sliced (English works well)
1/2 cup cider or white vinegar
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon dried dill weed
Sour Cream – optional
Place cucumbers in a small bowl and lightly salt. Let the cucumbers sweat liquid for about an hour. Drain the liquid from the cucumbers.
Combine the vinegar, water and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a very light boil. Add salt, pepper and dill weed; stir well. Pour over the sliced cucumbers. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
Serve with a dollap of sour cream.
Some Additional Ideas for Fresh Garden Cucumbers
Mix peeled and diced cucumber in with your tuna fish salad. Make sure to clean out the seeds.
Eat slices of cucumber on your BLT or egg salad sandwich.
Water infused with lemon and cucumber.
Throw clean and seeded cucumber into your green morning smoothie.
Cucumber Salad with Sour Cream and Dill (Our favorite)
Cucumber salad with sour cream and dill is a refreshing and easy-to-make side dish that pairs well with a variety of main dishes. Here’s a simple recipe to make it:
2 medium cucumbers, thinly sliced
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill – All About Dill and How Dill Is Used in Foods and Dips
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
Salt and pepper, to taste
Start by thinly slicing the cucumbers and placing them in a large bowl.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the sour cream, chopped dill, white vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper until well combined.
Pour the sour cream mixture over the sliced cucumbers and toss to combine.
Cover the bowl and refrigerate the salad for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.
Before serving, taste and adjust seasoning as needed with more salt, pepper, or vinegar.
This cucumber salad with sour cream and dill is a great side dish for summer picnics, barbecues, or as a refreshing accompaniment to grilled meats or fish. Enjoy!
Cucumber Yogurt Dip
2 (5 ounce) containers plain Greek yogurt (Chobani)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 large cucumber, peeled, seeded, and grated (about 1-1/2 cups)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste
Lay grated cucumber on a paper towel for about 5-10 minutes to drain some of the liquid. Combine everything together in a medium bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.
Health Benefits of Eating Cucumbers
Cucumbers are a healthy and refreshing vegetable that are low in calories and high in nutrients. Here are some of the health benefits of eating cucumbers:
Hydration: Cucumbers are mostly made up of water, making them a hydrating snack that can help you meet your daily fluid needs.
Nutrient-rich: Cucumbers are a good source of several important nutrients, including vitamin K, vitamin C, and potassium. They also contain antioxidants and other beneficial plant compounds.
Promote digestion: Cucumbers are a good source of fiber, which can help promote digestion and regularity.
Weight management: Cucumbers are low in calories and high in water and fiber, which can help you feel full and satisfied without overeating.
Skin health: Cucumbers contain vitamin C and other antioxidants, which can help protect the skin from damage and promote collagen production.
Blood sugar control: Cucumbers are low in carbohydrates and have a low glycemic index, making them a good option for people with diabetes or those looking to control their blood sugar levels.
Heart health: The fiber, potassium, and magnesium found in cucumbers can help promote heart health by reducing blood pressure and improving circulation.
Overall, cucumbers are a healthy and refreshing vegetable that can provide a range of health benefits when incorporated into a balanced diet. Try adding sliced cucumbers to salads, sandwiches, or as a healthy snack with hummus or yogurt dip.