Can You Freeze Ketchup?

You may not think of ketchup as something to freeze to begin with, but it’s a condiment worth freezing if it’s nearing its expiration date, and you can barely notice any difference at all in the flavor. 

Most households have a bottle of ketchup sitting in the cupboard, but it’s really easy to forget to use it, all the while the best before date gets a little closer.

Maybe you don’t use ketchup very often – maybe you only bought it once for visitors – and you’re now wondering what to do with it, or perhaps you have a frugal nature, and you like to stock up when it’s on offer. 

Unopened, ketchup will sit in a cool cupboard for up to 2 years with no problems affecting the quality of the product. Once opened, keep it in the fridge, and it will easily last a whole year.

So would you freeze it? Well, if you put ketchup into the freezer, there’s no fixed date which the quality definitely worsens, so you could keep it in there for a much longer time without any issues.

You will notice a slight difference in the texture once you’ve frozen and defrosted the ketchup. It will be noticeably thinner, but this won’t render it useless, and you can still use it as normal. 

Because ketchup has a high moisture content, it freezes pretty similarly to water, making the ingredients separate when it thaws. All you have to do is to stir the ketchup vigorously, and it’ll be back to its normal consistency.

How Do You Freeze Ketchup?

Everything you freeze is susceptible to freezer burn, so no matter how long you’re planning on storing the ketchup for, you should make sure to transfer it into a freezer-safe container. 

Don’t try to freeze it in the original bottle, as it can and will explode, making your freezer look vaguely like a murder scene. 

You can freeze it into a squeeze bottle if you prefer, but it does make sense to freeze it in smaller batches if you don’t use a lot, or if you don’t want to wait awhile for it to defrost. 

To freeze it in smaller servings, an ice cube tray or a mold will do the trick just fine. Decant the ketchup between the containers, filling each slot, leaving a tiny gap at the top. 

Give the containers a tiny shake to make sure the ketchup spreads over an even surface, stopping any lumps or air bubbles forming. 

Put the ketchup into the freezer for about two hours, or until frozen. Remove the container from the freezer, and work quickly to decant the servings of ketchup into a resealable freezer bag. 

Make sure to get rid of any excess air, seal the bag, label it, and freeze it. Because you’ve already frozen the servings of ketchup, they should come apart easily when you take them out of the freezer.

The freezer bag also helps protect the condiment from freeze burn and losing any moisture.

If you prefer, you can use an airtight container which will keep rigid, if you want to freeze a large amount of ketchup at once, and you’re sure that you’ll use it all within a short amount of time.

Once you’ve got your leftover ketchup into the container, seal it, label it, and freeze it. You can then take it out as you need it.

How Do You Defrost Ketchup?

Ketchup is one of the easiest condiments to defrost. Simply take the ketchup out of the freezer, and put it on a plate out on the side. Leave it for around an hour or so, and it will thaw nicely.

You may notice some separation once the ketchup has defrosted, but stir it to mix it back together. After that, it’s ready to use!


Ketchup has a reasonably long expiry date, but you can freeze it to make sure it won’t go to waste. 

It also helps that it freezes within a few hours, and it doesn’t take long to defrost, and the difference between thawed ketchup and fresh ketchup is barely noticeable. 

So the next time you see an offer on ketchup, you can give into your frugal nature without feeling bad about it.

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