Like many others, are you unsure of whether or not you can freeze cream cheese?
You are not the only one; we receive this question almost on a daily basis. People are always asking if they can freeze cream cheese, and we’re here to tell you that yes, it is absolutely possible!
Cream cheese is a versatile ingredient in your pantry. You can use it for cooking, baking, as spreading on bagels and toast – there are so many things that you can do with frozen and defrosted cream cheese! It freezes well too. So don’t let your leftover cream cheese go to waste – just pop it in the freezer instead!
And below, we will show you how to do it in the right way; read below for our guidelines.
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Can You Freeze Cream Cheese After Opening?
You can freeze almost all varieties of cheese, including cream cheese, after opening. If you want to freeze cheese and want to consume it later, buy a huge cheese block. Then, slice it up into reasonable sizes.
If your plans are not that long and you will consume your cheese soon, a freezer bag will be fine for the job done. But if you are a foodie or hate using plastic, then you need to seal the cheese in air-tight blocks or containers, label them, and it will last for a good long time.
However, remember that when you defrost or thaw the stored cream cheese, don’t expect that it will look like the fresh one. Its consistency and texture will be a little off than fresh cheese.
Some cheeses crumble after you put them in the freezer, and most, including the cream cheese, don’t seem exactly the same. However, you can safely use them for pizzas, melts, sandwiches, salads, casseroles, soups, chili, and other foodstuffs, but you cannot use them for the cheese platter.
How to Freeze Cream Cheese?
Here is the method to freeze a cream cheese in the right way.
To freeze cream cheese, take a cheese block along with its cardboard box or put it in a foil wrapping and then into your freezer. Keep it inside the freezer for 4 to 6 hours. Once it gets fully frozen, no need to do anything until you want to thaw or defrost it.
However, if you want to store cream cheese in bulk or freeze more than one pack, put all the cream cheese blocks in a freezer bag and put them in the freezer.
But remember that it will not prevent it from freezer burn. The standard foil packaging or cardboard box that comes with the cream cheese is reliable, and it also prevents freezer burn and flavor change.
Furthermore, fully frozen cream cheese can last for up to 6 months. However, the longer you keep it in the freezer, the more prominent will be the changed texture. That’s why try to consume it as soon as possible.
If you want to freeze partial packs of cream cheese, just wrap the slices or pieces properly in a plastic wrap, put them in an airtight box, and store it in the freezer.
Remember that sometimes stored or frozen cream cheese can separate, and you might see some liquid in the container after freezing it. You can beat this liquid in with the firm cheese and use it with the recipe.
Read more: How to Freeze Squash?
How to Defrost Cream Cheese?
Defrost Cream Cheese in the Fridge
Cream cheese is best thawed in the refrigerator and without a temperature shock. This ensures that you don’t experience excess graininess or water loss, which can lead to the separation of ingredients and moisture on top of your cream cheeses.
To defrost the cream cheese, take it out from the freezer and pour it in a bowl or container. Now you can put that container in the fridge. Leave it in the refrigerator until it gets defrosted. Remember, you need to put it in your normal refrigerator, not in the freezer.
The process usually takes one day, but it also depends on the cheese’s quantity or block size that you are trying to defrost.
Defrost Cream Cheese in the Microwave
A microwave is a thawing tool in all kitchens that not many of us don’t utilize often. Do you know that almost all microwave ovens have preset thawing features that allow you to defrost various items? Yes, it is true, so just put the cream cheese block in the oven, set the settings/programs, and in a few minutes, you will get completely defrosted cream cheese.
Furthermore, you can also weigh your cheese block before defrosting it. By doing so, you can know the exact defrosting time that your microwave will take to defrost the block. And this helps to prevent overcooking or to overheat your cream cheese.
But remember that before defrosting the cheese in your microwave, ensure that you have entirely removed its foil packaging as it can result in any unforeseen incident or burn your microwave. Always place the frozen cream cheese into a bowl, and then you can place it inside the microwave.
If you notice that your cream cheese’s block is still frozen or you want to defrost it more, just start the process again and keep checking in between that it’s ready or not.
Defrost Cream Cheese under Running water
Cream cheese is a necessary ingredient for many recipes, but it can be difficult to use if you hadn’t planned ahead or well before the time and left your cream cheese out or defrosted in the microwave.
You have two options: either leave your cream cheese on the counter until it reaches room temperature (risking that someone will come along and eat half of it) or that much faster by submerging it into hot water.
Most users prefer this defrosting option because there is no risk of overcooking for your precious cheese block.
To defrost your frozen cream cheese under hot or running water, place the cream cheese in a bag and press it hard to take out as much air as possible. Then put the freezer bag in a bowl.
Now, put that bowl in a stream of running water till the bowl gets filled. Adjust the water pressure as needed and let it run while your frozen cream cheese is defrosting.
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