Staring at a surplus of almond milk in your refrigerator, do you find yourself asking, “Can you freeze almond milk?”
Don’t worry; it’s a common question for those who love this nut-based milk.
And the answer is yes, you can freeze almond milk!
In this guide, we’ll discuss proper storage methods, techniques for proper thawing, and recommendations for using thawed milk in recipes, accounting for changes in taste and texture.
So let's get started and uncover the cold facts about freezing almond milk!
- Freezing almond milk is a perfectly safe process that prevents waste and extends your milk’s shelf life for one to six months.
- You can store almond milk in the freezer by placing it in ice cube trays, ziplock bags, or large freezer-safe containers.
- Always follow proper thawing or defrosting methods to avoid changes in taste and texture when you use frozen almond milk in different recipes.
How To Freeze Almond Milk
Ready to try freezing almond milk at home?
Here are easy-to-follow instructions for this using three different containers:
Ice Cube Trays
Freezing almond milk in ice cube trays is a popular method that allows for easy portion control and convenience.
It’s particularly useful if you want to use small amounts of almond milk at a time.
Here are the detailed steps on how to freeze almond milk using ice cube trays:
- Choose silicone or plastic ice cube trays. Avoid metal trays; your milk may take on a metallic taste when placed in them.
- Shake the almond milk carton well. Mixing your milk thoroughly is important because it can separate into solids and liquids if left unshaken.
This can also help prevent changes in texture after thawing.
- Pour into the ice cube tray. Fill the ice cube tray with your almond milk, leaving about ¼ inch at the top for expansion when the milk freezes.
- Gently tap the tray. Doing this on the counter will remove air bubbles and help the milk settle into the tray.
This prevents air pockets from forming ice crystals during freezing, which can cause textural changes.
- Cover the tray. Use a clean freezer-safe lid or tightly wrap the tray with plastic wrap or aluminum foil, ensuring that it fully covers the tray.
This protects the almond milk from absorbing any unwanted freezer odors.
- Place the filled trays in the freezer. Make sure they’re laid flat to prevent spillage.
- Freeze until solid. This usually takes at least 12 hours, but it's best to leave it overnight to ensure it's thoroughly frozen.
- Transfer to a resealable bag. Once frozen, promptly remove the almond milk cubes from the tray and transfer them to a resealable freezer bag to prevent them from taking on that dreaded musty “freezer taste.”
- Label the bag with the date. Indicate the date of freezing so you know when to use your milk and when to discard it.
Remember that frozen almond milk is best used within three to six months.
- Store in the freezer. Remove air, seal the bag, and place it in the freezer.
Large Freezer-Safe Containers
Freezing almond milk in large freezer-safe containers is an effective method for preserving larger quantities of almond milk.
This method is ideal if you have a large amount of almond milk that you want to store for future use, particularly for uses like baking or cooking in bulk.
Here’s how you can freeze almond milk using freezer-safe containers:
- Choose containers made for freezing. You may use containers such as plastic jugs or freezer-safe glass bottles.
- Shake the almond milk carton. Make sure to mix well.
- Pour the almond milk into the container. Don’t fill the container to the brim because the liquid will expand when it freezes.
Leave about one inch of space at the top.
- Seal the container with a lid. This helps prevent your milk from spilling or absorbing any odors.
- Label with the date. Before placing the container in the freezer, it's a good idea to add a label to the tray’s lid with the date.
This way, you'll know when you froze it and when you can use it.
- Place the container in the freezer.
Yes, you can also freeze almond milk using ziplock bags!
Doing so is not only convenient but also space-saving, so it works great if you have limited freezer space! This method allows the milk to be stored flat, taking up minimal room.
It is also useful for portion control, as you can freeze individual almond milk servings and thaw them as needed.
Here’s how to freeze almond milk using ziplock bags:
- Choose the right bags. Ensure you're using freezer-safe ziplock bags specifically designed for the freezer.
These are thicker and more durable, helping prevent freezer burn and messy leaks.
- Give the almond milk a good shake. This is to ensure any separated components are thoroughly mixed and can help prevent texture changes after thawing.
- Portion the almond milk. Decide how much almond milk you want in each bag. Measure out precise amounts or make an estimate based on your needs.
- Pour almond milk into the bag. Hold the ziplock bag open and carefully pour the almond milk into the bag. Leave at least one inch of space at the top.
- Remove as much air as possible before sealing. This can prevent freezer burn and help maintain the almond milk's original taste and texture.
- Lay the bags flat on a tray or a cookie sheet. This will help distribute the milk evenly and allow faster freezing.
- Label the bag with the date.
- Place the tray with the ziplock bags in the freezer. Allow to freeze solid, typically for four to six hours, depending on your freezer’s temperature.
- Remove the tray and stack the bags neatly. Once the almond milk is fully frozen, remove the tray or cookie sheet from the freezer.
You can then stack the frozen bags in the freezer to save space.
How Long Can Frozen Almond Milk Last?
Once opened, almond milk typically lasts for about seven to 10 days in the refrigerator. However, by freezing it, you can extend its life up to three to six months!
Keep in mind that it may taste best within one to two months of freezing.
Additionally, you’ll need to defrost it properly to ensure it tastes as good as the day you bought it.
How To Defrost Almond Milk
Just like freezing almond milk, defrosting or thawing almond milk is also a fairly easy process.
Here’s how to defrost frozen almond milk using two methods:
The refrigerator method is slower, taking several hours to overnight, but it's also the safest and best for maintaining the quality of the almond milk.
With this method, the milk thaws slowly at a consistent, safe temperature, which generally leads to less separation and a smoother consistency after thawing.
Here’s a detailed step on how to thaw frozen almond milk using the refrigerator method:
- Plan ahead. Remove the frozen almond milk from the freezer and place it in the refrigerator well ahead of when you plan to use it.
- Place it in the refrigerator. For a cup or two, thaw it for two to three hours; for larger amounts, like a full container, allow it to thaw overnight.
- Shake or blend. Once the almond milk has thawed, it may separate into different layers. Shake it well to recombine the layers. If shaking doesn't work, you can blend it until it returns to its original consistency.
- Use promptly. Thawed milk should be used within two to three days and always kept refrigerated.
Important Tip: Do not refreeze your almond milk after thawing. This will cause more ice crystals to form, which can make it even more watery or lead to unwanted flavor changes.
The microwave method is much faster; it takes only a few minutes. So it can be more convenient for last-minute needs.
If you’re curious about how to defrost frozen almond milk using a microwave, here’s a detailed process:
- Transfer to a microwave-safe container. If the almond milk is not already in a microwave-safe container, transfer the amount you need to one.
- Use the defrost setting. Place the container in the microwave. Use the defrost setting or 30% power to gently thaw the almond milk.
Start with 30-second intervals for small amounts or 1-minute intervals for larger amounts.
- Stir between intervals. After each interval, stir the almond milk to ensure even thawing. This also helps to recombine any separation that may occur during the thawing process.
- Monitor closely. Keep a close eye on the almond milk to prevent it from getting too warm or starting to cook.
- Shake or blend. Once the almond milk is thawed, there may still be some separation. Shake or blend the milk until it’s smooth again.
- Use immediately. Almond milk thawed using the microwave should be used immediately and not stored again. Do not refreeze thawed almond milk.
Tips When Using the Microwave Method
Because the microwave method has a faster thawing process, it can lead to more separation. Plus, it can give your milk a potentially grainier texture.
To avoid these issues, you can follow these tips:
- Use a lower power setting to ensure even thawing.
- Stir the milk frequently to prevent separation.
- Use the milk right away, and don’t store it again. Otherwise, the texture of the milk may become very unpleasant.
Using Frozen or Thawed Almond Milk
Frozen and defrosted almond milk can be used in a variety of ways for different recipes, from smoothies and shakes to baked goods and cooked dishes.
Here are different ways where you can try using your frozen or thawed almond milk:
Using Thawed Almond Milk
- Baked goods — Use it in place of regular milk in any baking recipe, from cakes and cookies to pancakes and cupcakes.
- Sauces — Try it as a base for pasta sauce and gravy, enhancing their smoothness and giving them a slightly nutty taste.
- Soups — Blend it into chowders and bisques for a luscious texture.
- Hot coffee or tea — Make freshly brewed coffee or tea creamy with your thawed almond milk.
- Cereal or oatmeal — Add it to your cereal or granola in the morning. You can also cook your oatmeal or make overnight oats with it!
Using Frozen Almond Milk Cubes
- Shakes or smoothies — Throw the cubes directly into your blender for a creamy, dairy-free addition to your shakes or smoothies.
- Cocktails — Shake with spirits and frozen cubes for dairy-free White Russians or mudslides.
- Coffee or tea — Add a couple of cubes to your iced coffee or tea for a chilled beverage.
Pros of Freezing Almond Milk
After learning the answer to the popular question “Can you freeze almond milk?” we know you’re curious about the many advantages it brings.
Let's dive into them:
- Prevents waste. Keeping unused almond milk in the freezer is beneficial for those who use almond milk infrequently or in small quantities, as it prevents wastage.
- Offers versatility. Whether you use almond milk for cooking, baking, or as a dairy milk substitute in recipes, the frozen version can be used in almost the same way as fresh almond milk.
- Saves money. Purchasing almond milk in bulk and freezing it can help you save money and prevent you from having to buy new milk every two weeks or every month.
Cons of Freezing Almond Milk
While freezing almond milk does come with numerous benefits, there are also a few potential downsides to consider, which we'll explore in detail in this section:
- Texture changes. As mentioned above, almond milk may separate into solids and liquids after freezing and thawing. So the overall texture can become grainy or gritty.
This doesn't affect its safety or nutritional value, but it can affect the milk's consistency when consumed directly or added to beverages.
The good news is you can avoid this by blending thawed almond milk thoroughly.
- Flavor alteration. Some individuals may discern a slight variation in the taste of frozen or thawed almond milk, particularly when consumed directly.
The naturally sweet and nutty flavor of almond milk can become slightly muted, leading to a subtler taste profile.
If this affects your enjoyment of your almond milk, you can instead avoid drinking it on its own and simply use it in cooking or baking.
- Tedious process. The process of freezing, storing, and thawing almond milk can be too tedious and time-consuming for some, while others say the inconvenience is a good tradeoff for the money-saving benefits it offers.
- Inapplicable use for different brands. Some brands of almond milk, particularly those with fewer preservatives, might separate or change texture more noticeably than others.
On the flip side, almond milk from brands that use stabilizers and emulsifiers such as lecithin may freeze and thaw with less separation.
These additives often help maintain the emulsion (the even mix of water and almond oil) in the milk.
To avoid unexpected textural changes, it's best to do a small test before freezing a large quantity of almond milk.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can You Defrost Almond Milk at Room Temperature?
It’s not recommended.
This is because allowing the almond milk to sit at room temperature for an extended period can encourage bacterial growth and cause the milk to spoil faster.
It's always safer to defrost almond milk in the refrigerator, where it can slowly and safely return to a liquid state at a constant, cool temperature.
Can You Freeze Almond Milk in Its Original Carton?
No, it's not recommended to freeze almond milk in its original carton.
When almond milk freezes, it expands, and this could cause the original carton to burst or leak.
Unlock the Many Benefits of Almond Milk Through Freezing!
By freezing almond milk, you create the opportunity to enjoy this delicious plant-based milk for longer!
Just remember to follow the right freezing and thawing methods for best results.
So if you've been contemplating this preservation method, don't hold back. Try it and discover the potential that frozen almond milk can bring to your kitchen!