How Do You Store Winter and Summer Squash?

How Do You Store Winter and Summer Squash?

“On storing squash for winter where is the best place to store a rather large abundance of fresh zucchini, spaghetti squash, and butternut squash.” Question from Jennifer of Wataga, Illinois

Answer: Summer and winter squashes are stored very differently. Tender zucchini and summer squash have a relatively short shelf life of a couple of weeks in the refrigerator, and they freeze fairly well but freeze even better as tasty baked goods. That’s why many gardeners bake and freeze zucchini bread and zucchini chocolate chip muffins, among other yummy treats. If you want to try freezing zucchini: wash, blanch, ice, and then freeze it in proper storage bags. (Click here for the steps.) Zucchini can also be made into relish for canning.

Storing Winter Squash

Tough-rinded winter squashes, like butternut, acorn, spaghetti squash, and pumpkins will often store well for months in a cool, dry place. Dry basements or cool mudrooms are perfect. You can also refrigerate them if you have space. Sometimes, I will process my pumpkins for pie and soup and freeze the frozen mash. This is another option. (Click here to learn how to cook pumpkins for mash and pie.)

I hope that these tips help!

Happy fall,

Jessie Keith

Black Gold Horticulturist




Plants are the lens Jessie views the world through because they’re all-sustaining. (“They feed, clothe, house and heal us. They produce the air we breathe and even make us smell pretty.”) She’s a garden writer and photographer with degrees in both horticulture and plant biology from Purdue and Michigan State Universities. Her degrees were bolstered by internships at Longwood Gardens and the American Horticultural Society. She has since worked for many horticultural institutions and companies and now manages communications for Sun Gro Horticulture, the parent company of Black Gold. Her joy is sharing all things green and lovely with her two daughters.

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