Apple juice is perfect for when you want a pick-me-up, as it’s both tart and sweet. It also helps that it’s very healthy, but maybe you never manage to finish it.
Or, you’ve bought a lot of juice for a party, and the demand wasn’t quite what you expected, and now you’ve got too much apple juice than you know what to do with.
Maybe you’re lucky enough to grow your own apples, or you know someone that does. You’ve got a surplus, and making apple juice (see also Freezing Applesauce) is a great way of using them, but what if you’ve still got too much?
Can you freeze apple juice? Here’s everything you need to know.
The Shelf Life Of Apple Juice
How long apple juice will last largely depends on whether you’ve got homemade apple juice, or store-bought. Sometimes, even the variety of the apples themselves can make a bit of a difference.
Store-bought apple juice should last about a week after opening, but depending on the brand and the ingredients, it may be as little as 4 days, or it may be as long as 10.
Homemade apple juice has a much shorter shelf life than its store-bought counterparts, as it doesn’t contain any additives or preservatives which would help it last longer.
This is ultimately the healthier version, but you do need to be quick. If you can, consume it the same day it is made. If that’s not possible, it will keep in the fridge for a maximum of 3 days.
If it’s been sitting in the fridge for a couple of days, make sure to stir it or shake it before using, as some parts may settle.
Is Freezing Apple Juice A Good Idea?
You can freeze apple juice (see also Can You Freeze Apples), but there are a few things to consider before you try it.
Thawed apple juice is noticeably different from its fresh counterpart.
With thawed apple juice, you’ll notice that it will be somewhat cloudier, the consistency of the juice might change, and the taste will be much sweeter, losing some of that tart aftertaste. It may also lose some of its goodness if you freeze it for a longer period of time.
If those don’t sound like dealbreakers, or if you’re only planning on freezing the apple juice (see also Can You Freeze Orange Juice?) for a short period of time, why not try freezing a small amount and see what the results are like?
The benefit of freezing apple juice is that it can be frozen for up to 6 months. For the best results possible, use the apple juice within a month of freezing it, as you’ll be able to enjoy it at its best.
How Do You Freeze Apple Juice?
If you’re making apple juice from scratch in order to freeze it, there are a few things you can do in order to make the best juice which will weather the freezer quite well.
The easiest one is to pick the freshest apples possible when you’re making apple juice. Largely, this works best when the apples are in season, as they’ll be better quality, with the most juice and flavor possible.
The level of ripeness will also make a difference. Make sure you pick the apples that are just ripe, rather than those that are overripe, under, or otherwise bruised or damaged.
Being picky about the apples you choose to make juice from goes a long way into making sure that the apple juice freezes well. Once you’ve done this, make the apple juice as normal.
If you’re freezing store-bought apple juice, plan to freeze it as soon as possible once you’ve bought it. Try not to leave it until the apple juice is nearly going out of date, as this will affect its quality.
The first thing you’ll need to do is to transfer the juice into a freezer-safe container. You can use a rigid airtight container, a freezer bag, or a freezer-safe jar.
Don’t fill the container to the top, as apple juice is made up of a lot of water, and this will expand as it freezes. Seal the container, label it, and freeze it.
If you’ve got a lot of apple juice to freeze, it’s worth portioning it into several containers, so you only take out as much as you need at once.
You can even freeze some into ice cube trays, and this will measure about two tablespoons of juice per cube. Fill the trays nearly to the top, allow it to freeze for a couple of hours, and decant the cubes into a resealable freezer bag.
The Best Way To Defrost Apple Juice
Thaw the apple juice in the fridge for best results. The slower it thaws, the better the apple juice will be.
If you’re in a hurry, you can leave it on the counter to defrost, but you’ll need to use it as soon as possible.