Vinegar has so many uses. While you may just put it on your fish and chips, it has a wide range of culinary uses, and you can even use it as an eco-friendly, safe and cheap way of cleaning.
Its versatile nature means that you can’t really have too much of it. If you have more bottles than you know what to do with, it’s worth knowing if you can freeze it or not.
While vinegar has pretty much an indefinite shelf life, you can freeze it if you want to, especially if it’s nearing its best before date.
It is worth noting that freezing vinegar can decrease its acidity, but this is also the same for vinegar that’s been sitting in the pantry for too long.
So no matter where you keep it, the acetic acid does start to degrade, causing the acidity levels in the vinegar to decrease.
While this may affect the flavor slightly, it won’t affect the potency if you want to use it as a household cleaner.
How Do You Freeze Vinegar?
How To Freeze A Whole Bottle Of Vinegar
Do not freeze vinegar in glass containers, as they may shatter upon freezing. Vinegar freezes at a lower temperature than water, at 28°F.
If you bought vinegar in a glass bottle, you’ll need to transfer it into a plastic airtight container of your choice, making sure to leave some room at the top of the container for the vinegar to expand as it freezes.
To guard against any potential leaks, cover the top of the container with cling film before you seal it. If you want another layer of protection, you can put tape around the lid once you seal it.
To keep the acidity levels in the vinegar as stable as possible, make sure the freezing temperature stays the same, at 28°F.
How To Freeze Leftover Vinegar
If you have a much smaller amount of vinegar you’d like to freeze, or if this is an experiment in freezing vinegar, you can use an ice cube tray instead.
Pour the vinegar into the tray, leaving some room at the top of each cube to expand,
Put the ice cube tray into the freezer. It takes vinegar a lot longer to freeze than you might expect, at about 6 to 12 hours in total.
Take the solid vinegar cubes out of the freezer, put them into a resealable freezer bag, label, and freeze.
As the vinegar will last pretty much indefinitely in the pantry or the fridge, it’s the same for the freezer. Just don’t forget about the degrading acidity levels.
How Do You Defrost Vinegar?
If you’re using the vinegar on its own for cooking, take a good portion of it out of the freezer and add it straight into your still-cooking dish.
If you’re going to use the vinegar as part of a dip (see also ‘Can You Freeze Tzatziki?‘) or as an ingredient in a marinade, you should defrost it first.
Put the frozen vinegar straight into the fridge, and let it defrost overnight.
If you need it earlier, you can try to put the whole container in a bowl of tap water, where it will defrost within a few hours.
As vinegar takes so long to freeze, and it has a pretty much indefinite shelf life, there’s not really a reason to freeze it, unless it’s reaching its recommended use-by date, or you prefer it that way, or you like having cubes of it ready for when you need it.
Now that you know you can freeze vinegar and how to do it, you can also clear some room in your pantry!