Can You Freeze Beer?

by Charlie

Over time, beer has become an iconic alcoholic drink. It has passed the test of time to be recognized as one of the most popular liquids on this planet. Cereal grain is the main component in beer brewing.

Although beer is usually produced industrially, many people have tried brewing their beer, giving it different unique tastes and blends. If you are an avid lover of beer and have thought about how to keep your bought or brewed beer from going bad. Well, we have some tips for you.

Can you freeze beer? Yes, you can. Although freezing beer is not the best way to preserve it. Refrigeration will do the job just fine. When properly refrigerated, homebrew beer can be stored for 10 to 12 months.

The best way to keep your beer from going bad and in its best quality is by refrigerating it. However, if you accidentally freeze your beer while intending to give it a quick chill in the freezer, or by leaving it in the car truck overnight during winter, it is not ruined if certain things are still in place.

Why You Should Not Freeze Beer

You shouldn’t freeze beer on purpose, several things could go wrong. Freezing your beer can change the taste and flavor. 

Liquids expand as they freeze. The pressure from the expansion, combined with the CO2 gas inside, could cause the container you have frozen your beer in to burst or break resulting in a loss of the gas. The absence of this gas could make your beer taste different. 

Frozen beer has a higher alcohol content than warm beer. This is because beer is 95% water and the rest is alcohol. Alcohol has a lower freezing point than water, the temperature is so low that alcohol will stay in its liquid form in your freezer. When your beer freezes, the water freezes, and the alcohol doesn’t. 

So when you drink that little amount of liquid that is present in your frozen beer, all you have done is drink the equivalent of a full bottle of beer in one gulp.

How to Refrigerate Your Beer

Beer is best enjoyed chilled and the best way to by keeping it cool. Beer that is exposed to light and warm temperatures would go bad on time. So how do you keep your beer chilled and prevent it from freezing?

Step 1: Storage

Where you keep your beer is important, you need to keep it away from light. If your beer is store-bought, you can dedicate a compartment in your refrigerator to keep the beer chilled and unfrozen. 

However, if you are an avid lover of beer, you can get a small refrigerator that would be dedicated to just storing beer. 

With homebrew beer, it is entirely different. For the beer to be properly carbonated, it needs to be kept warm for a few days. It should not be kept in temperatures higher than 25°C as it goes through the carbonation process. It can be kept at this temperature for 5 to 7 days for it to be properly carbonated. 

Store your beer in bottles, kegs, and cans, but make sure to not fill them to the brim. Leave about 1 to 2 inches of space before you fill them up.

Step 2: Refrigerating

Beer bottles should be kept upright when you want to store them for the long-term. This helps you prevent the formation of a yeast ring in the beer. Yeast rings are lines of sediment that could make your beer taste bad and look unattractive. 

Regulate the temperature of the refrigerator to go no lower than 8°C. If you adhere to these instructions, you can prolong the shelf life of your beer for 12 months.

What to do When You Accidentally Freeze Beer

There are times when you put some bottles of beer in the freezer to give it a quick chill and then forget that it’s there. Also, during winter it becomes so cold that your deck can perform the duties of a mini freezer. In cases like these does frozen beer mean it is ruined? 

Well, no. Beer contains sugar and this does not let it freeze properly, so if you notice that the ice in your beer is chunky or slushy, that’s perfectly normal.

As long as the container in which your beer froze is intact, your beer is still good to go. When it thaws, it goes back right to its normal state. If the container doesn’t break or deform from pressure, then the carbonation will set the beer right.  

How to Thaw Frozen Beer

Containers are not only liable to break as the beer freezes. A rapid temperature change can also break them. So if you thaw your beer too fast, you can break the bottle, or rupture the can. 

It is always best to thaw your beer in the refrigerator. When your bottles break it could be quite a mess to clean up. You can thaw your bottles of beer individually in plastic bags or Ziploc bags. So when they break, you can just throw the whole mess away.

You may also like