Canned Vs Frozen Fruit: How Do These Compare When Making Peach Crisp?

Whether it's hot or cold out, peach crisp is a crowd-pleaser. However, peach season is short, and it's sometimes tough to get your hands on fresh fruit. Canned and frozen peaches are both great alternatives if you're unable to find fresh peaches, so you won't have to relegate peach crisp to a mere "sometimes food" and can serve it up all year round.

If you opt for canned peaches, you should keep in mind that they're already cooked — even the raw-packed variety. On the other hand, frozen peaches are not cooked and can even be baked without thawing. One aspect canned and frozen peaches have in common is the time they save because neither requires any extra preparation. Peeling, pitting, and slicing is time-consuming when you're using several fruits in a dessert such as peach crisp. 

One thing to keep in mind when using canned peaches for peach crisps is that they're typically packed in a sugar syrup. This could overwhelm your dessert with too much sweetness or create a soggy texture if added without draining or amending the rest of your measurements. This is the only real difference between frozen and canned peaches in terms of taste. Because frozen peaches aren't kept in syrup, your peach crisp may taste less sweet if you choose them over canned.

Don't be fooled by canned fruit's bad rap

You may think that using canned fruit in your peach crisp could degrade it somewhat because of canned food's general reputation for lacking nutrition or being a "cheap" option. These myths are typically not worth believing, with proteins and minerals surviving the canning process. Embracing canned fruit is a great way to expand your cooking repertoire, as several sweet and savory recipes use canned fruit. Frozen fruit also retains its vitamins, so you're not losing out on flavor or nutrients, regardless of which you choose for your peach crisp.

The only details you really need to remember with canned peaches are draining and cooking times. To avoid a mushy fruit layer when making peach crisp with canned peaches (which can occur if your cooking times are based on fresh fruit), be sure to monitor the dessert as it bakes. Alternatively, if you choose frozen peaches, you should increase the cooking time a bit so the fruit isn't crunchy.

Frozen peaches are long-lasting but take up space

Canned peaches may be better than a huge bag of frozen fruit if kitchen space is limited. You'll typically only need to buy one large can for peach crisp. However, the space taken up by a bag of frozen fruit is balanced by its longevity and various uses.

For example, if you have leftover canned peaches, you'll need to use them within the week, according to USDA guidance. Frozen fruit can last for around eight months after the bag has been opened, even if you've frozen it yourself. Whichever you choose for your peach crisp, your dessert will have the same shelf life of about a week if stored in the fridge. When it comes to using up excess frozen peaches, switch out the crisp for other recipes such as peach cobbler and pie — or mix a classic peach Bellini if (by some terrible mistake) you've become bored with desserts.