Pâté is a creamy, spreadable paste made from spices, onions, and traditionally ground chicken or duck liver, though you can find it made with pork or game, vegetables, or even fish.
It can also take the form of a pie or a loaf. If you’re a fan of liverwurst, chances are that you’re eating the same thing as pâté.
While you can have it both hot or cold, most people prefer it chilled. If you make it from scratch, it’s worth knowing that the flavors will strengthen after the first day that you make it.
But is it worth freezing pâté? How long does it last?
The Shelf Life Of Pâté
If you keep pate (see also Can You Freeze Liver) in the fridge, it will stay at its best for a maximum of 8 days. This is why ready-made pâté is usually sold in smaller packaging.
If it has gone rancid, you’ll know, as it will start to separate, or leaking liquid that smells unpleasant.
Luckily, you can freeze it, extending the shelf life, and you’ll be able to enjoy it later on.
The best way to have pâté is to eat it fresh. If this isn’t possible, freezing it does extend the shelf life to 3 months, longer if you don’t mind some losses in flavor.
Because pâté has a lot of fat, freezing it for long periods of time will mean that the pâté’s flavor will change.
How Do You Freeze Pâté?
If you’ve made the pâté from scratch, the only way to freeze it is to do it in single portions.
This is because homemade pâté has no preservatives, and you’ll only want to defrost as much as you need, otherwise you’ll end up with the problem you had at the start: too much pâté, and not enough time to use it.
If you have store-bought pâté, this method is also best.
The easiest way to do this is with an ice cube tray. If you have a silicone mold, you can use that too.
Divide the pâté between the sections, using a spoon or a knife to make each portion level. Put the whole thing into the freezer, and give it a few hours.
Once it’s solid, remove it from the freezer. Take each portion and wrap them individually in parchment paper (see also Can You Freeze Food In Parchment Paper?), making sure that they’re completely covered.
This step will help stop freezer burn.
Grab a freezer bag, and transfer the pâté into the bag, and then the freezer.
How Do You Defrost Pâté?
There are two ways you can defrost pâté, and it just depends on how much time you have as to which one is best.
You can use the age-old method of transferring the pâté straight into the fridge, and let it defrost slowly overnight. This works well, as it will mean that the pâté will last slightly longer.
If you don’t have that much time, you can put the frozen pâté into a bowl of tap water, provided the pâté itself is in a sealed container. The tap water will help defrost it faster.
With the tap water method, it’ll probably take around 2 hours for the pâté to defrost. Once defrosted, you can use it as you normally would.
Pâté is one of those indulgences that delicacies are known for. While it doesn’t have a hugely long shelf life, you can freeze it to save it for later, as long as you don’t forget about it.
Pâté does start to change in flavor if it’s frozen for too long, but this is a small caveat to preserve such a popular dish, and it means you can enjoy it when you want.