Since hot dog buns come in packs of 8 to 12, leftover buns are always inevitable. So how do you preserve the leftovers? Can you freeze hot dog buns?

You might think that freezing hot dog buns is an odd way of preserving these products but surprise: hot dog buns freeze so well! In fact, hot dog buns will fare better if you freeze them rather than keep them chilled in the fridge. The fridge has a high moisture level, which may encourage mold growth. As you know, mold growth is a no-no when storing bread and other baked goods. Below is a step by step guide on how to freeze hot dog buns:

How to Freeze Hot Dog Buns?

Freezing Leftover Buns

Never use the hot dog buns’ original packaging alone because it doesn’t provide enough protection from the freezing temps.

To start, prepare several squares of aluminum foil. Make sure each square is large enough to wrap the bun fully. Wrap all the hot dog buns in aluminum foil, making sure there are no exposed spots.

Place all the wrapped hot dog buns in a large resealable plastic bag. Give the plastic bag a good squeeze to remove as much air as possible before sealing. Write the storage date then stick in the freezer.

Image used under Creative Commons from TheCulinaryGeek

Freezing Unopened Packs of Hot Dog Buns

If say, you have several unopened packs of hot dog buns that are nearing their expiry dates; you can store them in the freezer. No need to wrap the buns individually in aluminum foil, just place the unopened packs of hot dog buns in a large resealable plastic bag. Give the plastic bag a good squeeze to remove as much air as possible before sealing. Write the storage date then stick in the freezer.

Shelf Life, Thawing, and Reheating Suggestions

When kept in the freezer, hot dog buns should keep up to 3 months. The buns could keep indefinitely if the temperature is kept at a steady 0 degree Fahrenheit. However, we recommend using up the buns right away for optimal flavor and texture.

To defrost the hot dog buns, it’s best to simply leave them to thaw on the kitchen counter. Thawing the frozen hot dog buns in the fridge increases the risk of mold growth. By leaving them on the counter, the buns will thaw much more quickly and they’ll absorb the moisture, softening the buns right up.

After thawing, you can reheat the buns in many ways. You can warm them up in the oven. Just preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit and lay the buns in a parchment-lined baking sheet. Rub an ice cube or dab a little water over the buns then reheat for 5 minutes or until soft and golden.

You can also warm the hot dog buns in the microwave for 20 seconds on high. Place the hot dog buns in a microwave-safe plate, dab a little water over the buns then stick in the microwave until soft and warm.

Finally, you can also toast the defrosted bun in a toaster oven. Cut the buns in the middle (if they’re not pre-cut already) using a sharp knife, lay a couple on the toaster pan, pop the pan in the toaster then reheat until warm and slightly browned.

Image used under Creative Commons from jeffreyw

5 Clever Ways of Using Leftover Hot Dog Buns

Make Croutons

Give your favorite soups a richer, creamier taste by making your own croutons using leftover hot dog buns! Just cut the leftover buns into small squares, place the bread bits in a mixing bowl then add 1/4 cup of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Toss the bread bits then bake in the oven at 375 degrees until golden brown.

Bread Crumbs

Bread crumbs are a kitchen staple because they have a lot of uses. You can use bread crumbs as breading for fried dishes, as topping to pasta dishes or to thicken soups and stews. You can make bread crumbs out of leftover hot dog buns by processing bits of the bread in the food processor. If the buns are a little moist, bake them first in the oven at  350 degrees for 10 minutes before processing.

Salad Topping

You can use bits of leftover hot dog buns as salad toppings. The leftover hot dog buns will give the salad a delightful crunch. Just break the hot dog buns into small pieces then bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees until golden brown. Sprinkle a handful on a bowl of salad, toss then serve!

Garlic Bread

Who doesn’t love garlic bread? Perfect as a healthy snack and best paired with pasta dishes, garlic bread can be made using leftover hot dog buns.

Combine melted butter with a little olive oil and chopped fresh garlic or garlic powder. Brush the mixture on the buns then sprinkle a little thyme and rosemary. Bake in the oven at 400 degrees for 10 minutes or until the buns are lightly toasted. Serve and enjoy!

Pizza Buns

This is a great recipe to try if the kids are picky eaters. Turn your leftover hot dog buns into mini pizzas. Spread a little tomato paste in the middle of a cut bun. Add your favorite pizza toppings such as pepperoni, mushrooms, bacon, sausages, etc. Season with salt and pepper then top with grated cheese.

Stick in the oven and bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees until the bread is lightly toasted and the cheese has melted. Serve immediately.

Summary

Can you freeze hot dog buns? As you can see, freezing, thawing, and reheating leftover hot dog buns is so easy, anyone can do it. Of course, be sure to keep our step by step guide in mind and don’t miss any steps when freezing the hot dog buns. This way, your leftover buns will always come out perfect even after they’ve been frozen and reheated.