Can You Freeze Cannolis?

Cannolis are a popular Italian dessert. They consist of crispy fried shells filled with ricotta cheese and sugar. Depending on the version, they can be traditional, or they can also have the addition of chocolate or pistachio.

They aren’t difficult to make but can you freeze them so you can make a batch and save some for a later date?

Unfortunately, you can’t freeze the finished product as the pastry shells will become soggy but you can freeze the filling, and in this article, we will tell you how to freeze cannoli filling.

How To Freeze Cannoli Filling

1. Stabilize the filling.

You can freeze the filling as it is but it is better to add gelatine. By doing this, you will stabilize the filling and it will then keep its volume. 

2. Put the cannoli filling in airtight containers.

If you make a big batch of cannoli filling, it is a good idea to divide it into portions and freeze it in separate containers. By doing this, you will only defrost as much as you need at a time. Make sure that the lid is on tightly as you don’t want any air getting to the filling. If it does, freezer burn will probably occur, ruining the taste and texture of the filling. Put a label on the container so you know when you put it in the freezer. It’s not a good idea to use freezer bags to store the filling as they can burst, and you’ll end up with a mess in your freezer. 

3. Put the container in the freezer.

Tips For Freezing Cannolis

  1. Don’t freeze prepared cannolis as they will become mushy. Cannolis should only be filled when you are just about to serve them. However, you can make the pastry beforehand (see also How To Freeze Puff Pastry) and freeze the uncooked product separately .
  2. Don’t use freezer bags to freeze the cannoli filling as they may split. It is also quite messy to remove the filling from the bag when you come to defrost it. It is much better to use airtight containers.
  3. Make sure that the lids on the airtight containers are secure so that air doesn’t get in and cause freezer burn.
  4. Mix up the fillings. We’ve mentioned adding chocolate or pistachio to the ricotta filling but you can add a variety of other ingredients such as fruit puree, jelly, or hazelnut spread. 

For How Long Can You Freeze Cannoli Filling?

Cannoli filling will be safe to eat for up to two months after being put in the freezer. However, the texture will start to deteriorate after a few weeks, so we suggest that you don’t keep it in the freezer for longer than a month. Then you can be assured of having delicious cannolis that are almost as good as if you make the filling fresh. 

How Do You Defrost Cannoli Filling?

The only way to defrost cannoli filling is to put it in the fridge overnight. By doing this, it will retain taste and texture. Don’t defrost it on the countertop at room temperature. Apart from the texture being compromised, this is a surefire way of allowing bacteria to develop. Just take the container of cannoli filling out of the freezer and put it in the fridge the night before you want to use it. Put a plate underneath the container to catch condensation.

Don’t try defrosting the cannoli filling in the microwave as this will completely ruin the texture, even if you put the microwave on the defrost setting. 

Even if you do defrost the cannoli filling in the fridge, it might still seem to have lost some texture. If so, give it a quick whisk and you should get back some volume.

Can You Refreeze Cannoli Filling?

There is a chance that the cannoli filling will split on the first freeze and this will be increased if you freeze it again. The filling will probably become inedible so don’t refreeze. In addition, bacteria may develop if you freeze it again and you could become sick if you eat the filling.

Is It A Good Idea To Freeze Cannoli Filling?

Yes, it is a good idea to freeze cannoli filling as long as you follow the guidelines we have given. However, it doesn’t freeze for a long time, two months at the most. If you want to prepare ahead for a party or gathering, it is a good idea to freeze the filling so you will have less work on the day.

Frequently Asked Questions

We hope that you now know all that there is to know about freezing cannolis but in case you are still curious, we have answered a few questions here.

Can you freeze baked cannoli shells?

No, we don’t advise it as the shells will probably become soft and even mushy. They will be virtually unusable. Nobody wants a soggy cannoli as the delight of a cannoli is its crispiness.

Can you use a different cheese as the filling in a cannoli?

Yes, you can use mascarpone. But remember that it is very high in calories, although delicious. If you want a healthier option, choose ricotta. However, you can freeze mascarpone for longer than ricotta due to its water and fat content. You can even keep it in the freezer for up to four months. However, as with ricotta, don’t refreeze it.

What part of Italy do cannoli come from?

They are traditionally Sicilian and if you visit the island, you are likely to find them on offer in many restaurants and bakeries. They have, however, now become popular all over the world.

What else could I add to my cannoli filling to make it different?

We have mentioned chocolate, pistachio, and fruit puree, but you could try candied fruit or nut butter. If you want a little kick, add rum, brandy, or Tia Maria. However, alcohol doesn’t freeze that well and could split the filling so add it after it has defrosted and give it a whisk. You could also add flavorings such as vanilla, cinnamon, orange, lime, or lemon.

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