Donuts are perfect for when you have a craving for something sweet and doughy, but what happens when that craving has passed, and you have more donuts than you can eat in one go?
Donuts are famous for their very short shelf life. If you keep them at room temperature, the best case scenario would be they’d keep for two days.
If you keep them in the fridge, they’ll last a maximum of 5 days at best.
Because donuts are fried dough, and therefore contain a lot of oil, if you keep them at room temperature for too long, bacteria will start to grow. This shortens the shelf life.
If you keep the donuts in the fridge for too long, the donuts will harden, as the oils will solidify in the cold temperature, making them taste stale.
There’s not really a win for either of those two options. Luckily, you can freeze donuts, cutting down on any potential food waste, but you have to be careful how you do it.
When you freeze donuts, they will last for up to 6 months in the freezer, making it worthwhile to extend their shelf life.
The Trick To Freezing Donuts
The trick to getting donuts to freeze properly is to prepare them individually. Get some plastic wrap, and lay it on a clean, dry counter.
Make sure the donuts are cool. Grab one, and place it in the middle of the wrap, and make sure to cover the donut completely, making sure that it’s airtight.
To keep it that way, make sure the seams of the wrap are underneath the donut. You can use foil if you prefer.
Put the donuts into an airtight container, preferably a rigid one so that they don’t get squashed in the freezer. Label the container, and freeze it.
How Do You Defrost Donuts?
The easiest way to thaw frozen donuts is to put them on a clean plate and leave them out on the side. It may take an hour or an hour and a half for a donut to defrost completely.
If you want to warm them up once they are thawed – never a bad plan – either put them in the oven or the microwave.
If you do choose the microwave, only cook them for a maximum of 10 seconds at a time, to stop the dough from getting hard and horrible.
If you’re using the oven, preheat it, and keep it on a fairly low heat to warm the donuts through.
Donuts are the perfect snack, especially if you have a craving for something sweet and doughy.
While thawed donuts aren’t as lovely as freshly-made donuts, they are worth freezing to extend the shelf life alone.
Just keep in mind that different types of donuts will freeze differently.
Those filled with cream will be more difficult to freeze (see also Can You Freeze Cream Pies), so if you’re making some from scratch, consider only freezing plain or donuts without a lot of cream, and save the cream donuts for eating straight away.