If you love cheese, you probably love cheese curds. Or perhaps you’ve never heard of them and want to know what they are. Well, they are pieces of baby cheddar that haven’t been aged. They are separated from the whey during the process of cheesemaking and then put into bags and sold straight away. Lots of people love to just munch on them as a snack.
So what if you get a big bag of cheese curds (see also How To Freeze Cottage Cheese) and don’t think that you can eat them by the time they’ve reached their best-by date in the fridge? Can you freeze what you don’t use?
Is it Possible to Freeze Cheese Curds?
The simple answer to this question is yes, you can freeze cheese curds, but you need to follow guidelines to achieve success. The texture may change slightly after the cheese curds have been defrosted, but this really is minor and you will barely notice the difference. If you use them in a recipe after they have been defrosted, you won’t notice any difference at all.
The two major concerns with freezing cheese curds are avoiding freezer burn and stopping the cheese curds from clumping together. In this article, we will tell you how to freeze cheese curds perfectly.
Freezing Cheese Curds
You will want the cheese curds to freeze separately so that you can take out as many as you need for one sitting. This is how you do it:
- Cover the cheese curds with flour or cornstarch. This absorbs any moisture in the curds which means that they won’t stick together.
- Put the cheese curds in a freezer bag. Make sure that you squeeze out the air to stop freezer burn. While this isn’t harmful to your health, it can change the flavor and texture of your cheese.
- Put the freezer date on the bag so that you remember when you put it in the freezer. You don’t want the curds languishing in a dark corner of the freezer losing flavor. This is especially important if you freeze a lot of items. It is easy to forget the date of freezing.
- Put the bag in the freezer, making sure that you don’t put anything heavy on top of the bag. You don’t want the cheese curds to get squashed.
How Can You Extend the Shelf-Life of Cheese Curds?
If you would like to keep your cheese curds in the freezer for as long as possible, the answer is to buy a vacuum sealer machine. They work with lots of different bags and will ensure that no air is left in the bags. This means that the cheese curds have a better chance of retaining their flavor while in the freezer and ensuring that they don’t get freezer burn. If you freeze cheese curds in a container or an ordinary freezer bag, they can last for up to four months, but if you use a vacuum sealer, they can last for up to six months. Yes, the initial cost of the vacuum sealer will put you out of pocket, but you can use it for all different foodstuffs so it is worth it in the long term.
Defrosting Cheese Curds
The best way to thaw out frozen cheese curds is to take out as many as you want from the freezer, put them in a container, and leave them to defrost overnight. You mustn’t defrost them on your counter as bacteria can develop and you could be at risk of food poisoning. Don’t keep them for longer than a few days in the fridge after thawing as again bacteria can develop. The same goes for refreezing. If you don’t use all the cheese curds, don’t refreeze them as this can also cause food poisoning.
Once you have defrosted your cheese curds, you can eat them as they are or you can add them to a recipe such as poutine. You can deep fry them or even make a cheesecake with them. You could even make a corned beef and cheese curd quesadilla if you enjoy Mexican food (see also How To Freeze Tamales) or perhaps put them on a pizza. Maybe just add them to mac and cheese (see also Can You Freeze Mac And Cheese). The opportunities are endless.