Freezing dairy products can be tricky, as some don’t defrost well, especially anything that’s cream-based.
Some dairy products are difficult to freeze to begin with, and when it comes to half and half, the thin consistency has a risk of making it break or even split once it defrosts.
While it is safe to eat once thawed, it does have an odd appearance of looking half curdled, which isn’t really appetizing, especially when you consider what it’s supposed to be like.
Like Philadelphia cream cheese, it’s much better to use thawed half and half in either baking or cooking.
We don’t suggest mixing it with coffee, as it can make for an unpleasant taste when frozen and then thawed. Your coffee may take on an odd appearance, too.
Having said that, there’s a trick which does help keep the original silky texture of thawed half and half. It will also freeze up to 3 months before losing flavor and quality. This gives you some leeway in how you want to use it, and when.
Read on to discover the best way to freeze half and half, and how to defrost it properly.
How Do You Freeze Half and Half?
How to Freeze Unopened Half and Half
The simplest way to freeze half and half is to put the whole thing in the freezer. It will freeze perfectly well.
Because you haven’t opened it, it won’t split when you defrost it, as there’s not enough oxygen within the container in order to create freezer burn.
How to Freeze Leftover Half and Half
To freeze leftover half and half that you won’t use in a hurry, don’t use the original packaging it came in.
Take a clean plastic jug which is freezer safe, and pour the liquid in, leaving some room at the top to let the liquid expand when it freezes.
How to Freeze Smaller Portions of Half and Half
If you’d like to freeze smaller amounts of half and half, you can do so by using ice cube trays. It’s the easiest way to portion small amounts, and it will also save on freezer space.
Because the amounts are so small, they will also freeze very easily.
Handily, an ice cube of half and half amounts to 2 tablespoons, which makes it much easier for recipes!
What’s the Best Way to Defrost Half and Half?
The best way to defrost half and half – no matter if you froze an unopened bottle, or an ice cube’s tray full, is to put the frozen half and half in the fridge.
Let it warm up until it has defrosted. You’ll notice that it will have split at least a little, but we can fix it with no problem at all.
The best way to fix split half and half is to whisk it until everything has recombined. Once it’s regained its texture, it’s ready to use in whatever you need it for.
With any food, it’s not a good idea to re-freeze it after you have frozen it and thawed it out. It will dramatically lose its quality and texture, no matter the product you’ve chosen.
If you don’t tend to use a lot of half and half, but you don’t want to spend more money on smaller containers, the best thing to do is portion it into smaller portions and freeze the lot.
It will also save some much-needed space in your freezer, rather than attempting to freeze a jug which is only half-full.
This also ensures that you only ever use what you need, making your kitchen work for you, your budget, and your lifestyle