Tag: beverage

Beverages

Can You Freeze Orange Juice?

Can you freeze orange juice? We all know that fresh orange juice doesn’t last long. If you have ever considered freezing it, this article is for you.

Orange juice is one of those juices, that is always good to have on hand. It helps prevent and fight off cold and flu symptoms and keeps the immune system strong due to its high vitamin C content. Vitamin C is also essential for keeping the skin, bones, muscles, and tissues of the body strong and healthy too.

One of the best ways to ensure you always have orange juice on hand is to purchase it in bulk when it is on sale and freeze it. Freezing orange juice keeps it fresh and tasting delightful when you need it most for nourishing your body. Below is a step by step guide on how can you freeze orange juice:

How to Freeze Orange Juice?

Orange juice can be frozen a few ways to maintain freshness. If you purchase a container full of orange juice from the grocery store, and the container it is in is freezable and will expand, you should freeze the orange juice as is to help maintain the most freshness.

However, if the container you have purchased your orange juice in is not freezable or expandable, you will need to pour it into a container that is and freeze it that way. Some people even like to pour orange juice into ice cube trays and make frozen orange juice cubes to add to water or to their refrigerated orange juice to make it super ice cold.

Other people simply, freeze the orange juice into ice cube form. As soon as the ice cubes are completely frozen, they are transferred into sealable freezer bags and stored until you want to have some orange juice.

Orange halves

Image used under Creative Commons from Kyle McDonald

Always check the expiry date prior to freezing store bought juice. This goes especially for orange juice that’s nearing its expiry date.

If you are squeezing orange juice yourself, make sure the tools you use to juice the oranges are sterilized and well cleansed along with the freezer containers you will be storing the juice inside.

Also, make sure you freeze freshly squeezed orange juice right after it has been squeezed so it doesn’t become spoiled fast.

How to Defrost Frozen Orange Juice?

The best way to defrost orange juice is by placing the original frozen container of it in the refrigerator until it becomes liquid form. If you have it in freezer containers or ice cube form, to simply take the frozen orange juice and place it into a large pitcher, place it in the refrigerator and allow it to defrost that way for about 6 to 12 hours.

Improperly thawed orange juice tends to cause watered down flavor. As long as the juice has been packed and thawed properly, freezing won’t change the juice’s flavor.

However, pulpy orange juice could become thicker and the pulp could become more dry and flaky when frozen and thawed.

The best way to handle pulp filled orange juice that you freeze is by simply straining the pulp from the juice after the defrosting process.

With all this being said, orange juice that is frozen for longer than a year may lose some of its taste, bright orange color and become a little watery in consistency. It is best if you freeze orange juice to use it up within the first 6 months. However, it won’t spoil if you wait longer to defrost it and drink it.

Orange juice

Image used under Creative Commons from Breville USA

Summary

It’s nice to know that you can prolong the shelf life of orange juice by freezing it. Now that you know how can you freeze orange juice, you can always store the juice that you cannot finish for later!

Beverages

Can You Freeze Almond Milk?

So you found yourself with a half-full container of almond milk and there’s no good way to use it in the next few days. Can you freeze almond milk? Manufacturers advise against freezing but some people have great success freezing almond milk.

There’s one important thing about freezing almond milk that we need to mention right away. The texture of almond milk changes after freezing and thawing. If you’re considering freezing it for drinking purposes, that might not be the best idea. Fresh almond milk tastes better than frozen and defrosted almond milk. You most likely won’t be satisfied with its taste. You can, however, freeze it to use it in cooking and baking as well as to add to smoothies, or other recipes.

Glass of almond milk

One more thing to remember is that almond milk from some brands freezes slightly better than others. So if you really want to make this freezing project work (i.e. it’s not a one-time thing), consider freezing almond milk from many brands and trying to figure out which brands work best for you. Having said that, let’s go through ways of freezing this lactose-free drink.

How to Freeze Almond Milk Cubes?

Freezing almond milk cubes takes more effort, but it allows you to easily thaw as much almond milk as you need at a time. In many cases, it makes perfect sense to spend a few more minutes on the freezing process and not worry about leftover thawed almond milk in the future. Here’s how the process looks like:

  1. Take an ice cube tray and pour the milk into it.
    Almond milk in ice cube tray
  2. Put the ice cube tray into the freezer. Keep it there until the liquid freezes. Freezing should take only a few hours. I usually leave the trays overnight, just to be sure the milk froze completely.
    Frozen almond milk in tray
  3. Remove the almond milk cubes from the tray and transfer them into a freezer bag or freezer container. If using a freezer bag, squeeze out as much air as possible before sealing. Work fast so the warmth of your fingers won’t thaw the milk. Label the bag or container if needed.
    Almond milk cubes
  4. Throw the freezer bag or container into the freezer.

That’s it. Little effort and now you can thaw as little almond milk as you need at a time, even just a cube or two for your morning cup of coffee.

How to Freeze Almond Milk in a Container?

Freezing almond milk in a container requires little effort and time. It takes literally 5 minutes and the milk sits in the freezer. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Consider portion size. When thawing, you will thaw all the milk that’s in a container. So if you only need one cup at a time and have 3 cups worth of almond milk, freezing three one-cup portions is the smart thing to do. If you have no idea how much almond milk you will need at a time, consider freezing it in cubes.
  2. Pick a container(s). Almond milk consists mostly of water, so it expands when frozen. That means we need to leave some space in the containers used for freezing. Without it, there will be a mess in your freezer and you don’t want that. If you would like to use the original packaging, feel free to do so. Just make sure there’s space for the milk to expand. You can also use any freezer-safe airtight containers for freezing.
  3. Pour the milk into the containers. Label them with a name and a date if needed.
  4. Transfer the containers into the freezer.

That was easy, right?

How to Thaw Almond Milk?

  • Overnight in the fridge. Put the almond milk cubes or container with frozen milk into the fridge in the evening. It will be thawed and ready to use in the morning.
  • On the counter. An hour for cubes or 3 to 4 hours for a container should be enough to thaw frozen almond milk. Make sure to use the milk immediately after thawing.
  • Throw it in frozen. If it’s a cooked dish, consider throwing in the milk frozen. In many dishes, this trick won’t have any downsides and you won’t have to worry about thawing.

Frozen and thawed almond milk might go bad faster than a fresh one, so it’s best to use it within a day or two after thawing. Of course, ideally, you would use all of it immediately after thawing, but it’s not always an option.

Coffee with frozen almond milk

A glass of coffee with a frozen almond milk cube

Questions about Freezing Almond Milk

When it Makes Sense to Freeze Almond Milk?

Most store-bought almond milk has a shelf life of at least a couple of months, so if the carton is still unopened, it usually doesn’t make sense to freeze it. Unless, of course, you are certain that you won’t use this milk alternative before the date on the package.

When it comes to homemade almond milk, if you’re preparing a bigger batch, it makes perfect sense to freeze some of it right away. Homemade variety usually doesn’t contain any preservatives, so its shelf life is short and freezing is the way to go.

How Freezing Affects Almond Milk?

As I’ve mentioned earlier, freezing almond milk isn’t recommended by manufacturers of brands such as Silk Pure Almond or Almond Breeze®. The big question is – why? Producers state that the texture and consistency of almond milk are affected by freezing and thawing. The changes are noticeable – almond milk separates irregularly which both reduces visual quality and changes the texture. Freezing doesn’t have an effect on the safety or nutritional value of almond milk.

Can you freeze almond milk in the carton?

Ideally, you want to transfer the product in a freezer-safe container, but the carton it came in is usually fine as well. Assuming that a carton of almond milk has been opened, yes you can freeze the milk in its original packaging. Since the opened carton of almond milk has more room to spare, the milk product could expand without breaking the packaging.

Unopened carton of almond milk isn’t recommended for freezing. The sealed packaging could burst in the freezer at some point, causing a mess in the freezer. For freezing unopened cartons of almond milk, transfer the product in a freezer-safe container just to be on the safe side.

Can you freeze homemade almond milk?

You can freeze homemade almond milk but don’t expect its shelf life to be similar to store-bought almond milk. Store-bought almond milk may contain stabilizers and preservatives that extend the shelf life of the product. Homemade almond milk could spoil easily. The way to go is to freeze the homemade almond milk as soon as possible. Freshly made almond milk could retain its original flavor and consistency better than stale almond milk.

Can you freeze Alpro almond milk?

According to the brand’s official website, certain Alpro products are not meant to be frozen. A representative for Alpro said that the brand’s almond milk, in particular, should not be frozen. Don’t let the fact that the brand doesn’t recommend freezing their product prevent you from experimenting with freezing it. As mentioned already a few times, most brands don’t recommend freezing their almond milk and people do it either way.

Can you freeze smoothies made with almond milk?

Thinking of whipping up smoothies for later? Drinking smoothies is a great way to take in more nutrients from whole foods such as fruits and vegetable. But can you freeze smoothies made with almond milk?

Generally, smoothies freeze beautifully but their thawed state will depend on the ingredients that you used. The quick answer is yes, you can freeze smoothies made with almond milk. Since smoothies are made from frozen ingredients and these drinks are cold drinks, freezing is a terrific way to preserve the ingredients’ vitamins. Just make sure you are using freezer-safe containers. Glass containers will burst from the freezing temperatures.

Once the smoothies are thawed, the consistency may turn a little watery. This goes especially for smoothies with almond milk. You can restore the smoothie’s original consistency by giving it a good stir or running it through the blender once again. Also, you can pour more almond milk to give the drink a milkier taste.

Can you freeze almond milk for smoothies?

Yes, you can freeze almond milk for smoothies. As previously discussed, almond milk that’s been packed in a carton packaging can be frozen now to be used later in any drink, including smoothies. You can also freeze the almond milk in ice cube trays and then use the cubed almond milk for smoothies. Depending on the drink, you may have to give the almond milk a little time to thaw before incorporating it into a smoothie.

Beverages

Can You Freeze Coconut Milk?

If you’re one of the people who use coconut milk from time to time, you’ve certainly asked yourself, “can you freeze coconut milk?”. Avid drinkers and users of this milk alternative don’t care about freezing it because they use it way before it goes bad. But, if coconut milk is something you use rarely, an entire carton of it might be too much for you to use at a time. That’s when you start thinking about freezing the leftovers.

Answering the question of whether or not you can freeze coconut milk is difficult. Most manufacturers do not recommend freezing coconut milk. Freezing and thawing change the texture and taste of this dairy-free drink. But many people freeze it anyway and are quite happy about the results.

Here’s the thing: freezing coconut milk makes sense if you’re going to use it in a recipe that requires coconut milk as an ingredient. That means in cooking, baking, frozen desserts, added to coffee, or in a smoothie. Frozen and defrosted coconut milk on its own won’t be as good as fresh one, but in a recipe, it won’t be a big deal. Having said that, let’s go through ways of freezing coconut milk.

Coconut milk and carton

How to Freeze Coconut Milk in Cubes

This method is perfect if you don’t want to worry about portion size. With this method, you can thaw as much coconut milk at a time as you want. Takes a bit more effort, but in most cases, it’s totally worth it. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Prepare the ice cube trays. You can use ice cube bags if you would like, but the trays are reusable and more environment-friendly, so go with trays if you can.
  2. Pour the coconut milk into the trays.
    Coconut milk in ice cube tray
  3. Transfer the trays into the freezer and keep there until coconut milk cubes are frozen. It will take at least 3 hours for the cubes to freeze. Remember that the top of each cube will freeze fairly fast, but that doesn’t mean the liquid underneath has frozen too. I, just to be safe, usually leave the trays in the freezer overnight.
    Frozen coconut milk cubes
  4. Transfer the cubes to freezer bags or containers. Try to do this as fast as you can. This way, the cubes won’t start to thaw. Of course, you can leave the trays in the freezer, but it’s far more convenient to throw the cubes into a container and have the trays ready for another batch of freezing.
    Coconut milk cubes and freezer bag
  5. Put the bags or containers into the freezer.

Now you can easily scoop a few cubes to add to your recipe or thaw a bunch of them for a smoothie.

How to Freeze Coconut Milk in Containers

This method requires no time and effort. It’s best to know how much coconut milk will you need to thaw at a time so you can portion the coconut milk accordingly. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Choose portion size. As mentioned, if you know how much of this nut milk you will need at a time, portion the coconut milk accordingly. If you’re uncertain, go for smaller portions, like one-cup or even half a cup. Freeze coconut milk in cubes means you don’t have to worry about portion size and leftovers after thawing.
  2. Pour the milk into containers. Make sure to leave some head-space, as the milk will expand when freezing. It’s fine to freeze coconut milk in the carton it came in, provided it’s not full.
  3. Label the containers with name and date if needed.
  4. Put the containers into the freezer.

That’s it. The whole process shouldn’t take more than a few minutes for a single carton of coconut milk.

Coffee with coconut milk cubes

Cup of coffee with 2 cubes of frozen coconut milk

How to Thaw Coconut Milk

There are at least a few ways you can thaw coconut milk. No matter the method you choose, make sure to give the thawed coconut milk a good stir. That will improve its consistency.

  • Overnight in the fridge. The classic: transfer the cubes or containers you want to thaw into the fridge in the evening, they will be thawed in the morning.
  • At room temperature. This works much better for cubes, but you can do it for containers too. Please note that you should use all of the milk right after thawing.
  • Throw it in frozen. If you need coconut milk for a cooked recipe (like a soup), you can throw it in frozen. Make sure to add a few minutes of additional cooking time to account for thawing and cooking the milk.
Dairy

Can You Freeze Milk?

Can you freeze milk? If you would like to know whether milk (cow’s milk) can be frozen or not, this article will give you the answers you need. Many people drink cow’s milk on a regular basis, some people drink even few glasses of milk a day. There are also some questions about milk that need answers. What should you do if you’ve got a half empty jug of milk and you can’t find a way to use the leftovers? Should you buy milk in bulk when there are some good deals available or you live a long drive from a good store?

Freezing milk seems to be the only solution to the given issues. A lot of people wonder whether they can freeze milk and the answer to that question is affirmative. You can freeze milk. There are, however, some facts regarding freezing this dairy beverage that you should be aware of.

When you should consider freezing milk?

The most important thing about freezing milk is that it’s not very beneficial to the drink. I’ll discuss this matter in more detail later. Because of that you should consider freezing milk only in some cases. If your milk is close to expiration date and you can’t use it within a couple of days, freezing it is probably the only option that allows you to preserve the beverage for future use. Another situation when freezing milk might be a good idea is when you buy milk in bulk because you need to drive an hour or so to the nearest store where milk is sold for a reasonable price. If that’s the case, you can also consider buying UHT (Ultra High Temperature) milk which is sold unrefrigerated and can be stored in the pantry for at least 6 months. If you don’t want to buy a UHT milk, you’d probably need to freeze most of your milk if you buy it in bulk.

Frozen milk
Image used under Creative Commons from Henry Bush.

Freezing and thawing milk – how it affects taste and texture

As I’ve mentioned earlier, freezing milk isn’t beneficial to this liquid. The thing is – milk tastes a little bit different after freezing and thawing it. Its consistency also changes. For some people the taste of this beverage after freezing and thawing might be not as appealing as fresh milk’s taste. It’s a matter of personal preference. Therefore, if you plan on using frozen and then thawed milk for drinking, you should run a little trial first. Freeze a half full container of milk, then unfreeze it and drink it. You will be sure whether freezing milk for drinking purposes works for you, or not. However, if you don’t like the flavor of thawed milk, nothing is lost yet. Frozen and thawed milk should be fine for any kind of baked goods like pancakes or french toast[1]. When it comes to freezing different kinds of milk, bear in mind that skim and low-fat milks should taste better than the full-fat ones because there is less separation.

Useful information about freezing milk

When it comes to freezing milk, there are some things that you should be aware of. Firstly, if you would like to freeze milk, you need a properly sized container. You need some head space in the container after pouring milk in there. That’s because it will likely expand while freezing. Otherwise the container might get damaged and milk spilled in your freezer. If you want to freeze milk in its cardboard container, it’s a good idea to pour out a bit of the liquid before putting it in the freezer. You can thaw milk in the refrigerator (that takes a day or two, depending on how much milk is in the container) or in a sink of cold water (that’s a lot quicker). Another thing that you should bear in mind is that you should shake or stir the milk after thawing.

You can repackage the milk and freeze it in smaller or larger containers. It depends entirely on your needs. When storing milk in the freezer, remember that the liquid should be in an airtight container. It prevents the milk from absorbing other odors. If you’ve decided to freeze milk only a few days before the expiration date, it’s a good idea to use a marker and write on the container the number of days that are left until the expiration date. That will be useful after thawing the drink.

Summary

Cow’s milk is one of the most popular beverages. Many people drink it often and worship its taste and health benefits. You can freeze milk, but you need to know that it changes taste and texture after thawing, so you should check whether you like the taste of thawed milk.

Beverages

Can You Freeze Soy Milk?

Can you freeze soy milk? If you would like to know whether soy milk can be frozen or not, this article will give you the answers you need. Many people drink soy milk, some of them very often. What should you do if you’ve got some leftovers of soy milk and you can’t really find a way to use them within a couple of days? What should you do when you’ve got a few unopened cartons of soy milk in the fridge and you need to leave your home for a couple of months or more? There are at least two solutions to the mentioned issues. The first one is obvious – throw away the soy milk, you can always buy another carton when you’ll be in need of soy milk. The second one is obvious – freeze the soy milk. The answer to the question of whether soy milk can be frozen is affirmative – you can freeze soy milk. There are, however, a few things about the process of freezing soy milk that you should be aware of.

When you should consider freezing soy milk?

The thing is – freezing soy milk isn’t beneficial to this drink. I’ll discuss that issue in more detail later. Because of that, you should consider freezing this non-dairy milk only when you have no other option. I assume that throwing the milk away isn’t an option and you would like to drink your milk somewhere in the future.

A glass of soy milk
Image used under Creative Commons from mc559.

So, when you should consider freezing this soy beverage? Freezing soy milk is a good idea when it’s close to the expiration date and you can’t find a way to utilise this lactose-free drink. Please bear in mind that unopened shelf stable soy milk stored in the pantry should be fine for about a year. If the package is already opened, the drink should be fine for about two weeks, maybe a little more, when stored in the refrigerator. Therefore, check the expiration date before putting the package into the freezer. If you buy soy milk in bulk and you’re aware of the fact that you won’t be able to drink all the milk before the expiration date, freezing some of it is a good idea.

Useful information about freezing soy milk

If you need to freeze this dairy-free beverage, there are some things that you need to know. In the previous paragraph I’ve mentioned that freezing isn’t very beneficial to soy milk. If fact, most soy milk producers state that freezing their products isn’t recommended. They say that soy milk often loses its texture and some of its flavor. Because of that, after freezing and thawing, consumers don’t find this soy beverage as tasty as it was before freezing. Here’s what Silk’s FAQ says about freezing Silk products (and soy milk amongst them):

We do not recommend it. Although freezing does not affect their safety or nutritional value, Silk products change in texture when thawed. However, Silk soymilk, almondmilk and coconutmilk perform well in frozen-dessert recipes.

Image used under Creative Commons from Kirinohana.

There are some issues that you want to consider while freezing soy milk. Size of the soy milk’s package is the first one. The package should be noticeable larger than the volume of the beverage. Soy milk consists mostly of water and, as we all know, water changes its capacity while freezing. Because of that, the liquid should have some space to grow inside the container. Otherwise soy milk might destroy the container and spill in the freezer. You should consider storing the soy milk in an airtight container. This way your lactose-free drink won’t absorb any odors from the freezer. If you need to unfreeze your soy milk, you should thaw it in the fridge. After that, it needs to be shaken, stirred or mixed because water will be separated from other contents of the liquid. There is one more thing that you should bear in mind – try not to keep soy milk in the freezer for a prolonged time (like more than a few months past the expiration date). It might end up being spoiled after thawing.

Summary

Soy milk is one of the commonly used milk alternatives. Many people prefer to drink it simply because it’s a dairy-free and lactose-free drink. If you can’t utilise your soy beverage, you can freeze it freely. Please bear in mind that you can freeze soy milk, but it’s not recommended to do so. Do it only if you have to.