Brown sugar is an alternative to white sugar. It is deemed to be healthier because it is partially unrefined. The distinctive brown color is associated with the presence of molasses. The higher the level of molasses in the sugar, the darker the shade of brown that the sugar has.
Brown sugar is soft and contains more moisture than white sugar. Although, under favorable conditions, it would keep indefinitely. The presence of moisture makes it prone to getting spoilt. Most manufacturers stipulate a best-before period of six months after opening a pack of brown sugar.
But, if you want to keep it for longer than that, how do you go about it?
Can you freeze brown sugar? Yes, you can. By freezing, you can keep brown sugar indefinitely or for 18 months at the very least. Brown sugar can be frozen with no damage to the texture, taste, or flavor if the proper storage guidelines that are mentioned later in this article are followed.
Brown sugar can get clumped up into rock hard chunks. This is because of the loss of moisture in the sugar. However, you can revive rock hard sugar if you catch it on time. Freezing brown sugar can help you prevent it from going hard and keep it soft till you are ready to use it.
How to Freeze Brown Sugar
It doesn’t take much to freeze brown sugar. It’s so easy that you could ask your 8-year old to do it. Although, I wouldn’t trust them with sugar though. That could be too much of a temptation.
Regardless of how simple freezing brown sugar might turn out to be, paying great attention to detail is what would keep it from spoiling in the freezer or absorbing some unwanted flavors.
Step 1: Procuring a Suitable Container
When freezing brown sugar, I will recommend that you either use an airtight mason glass jar, small airtight Tupperware containers, or airtight freezer bags. Do not freeze brown sugar in its store-bought packaging. That’s a recipe for danger.
Also, if you would be using airtight containers you should probably run along to the store to get new ones so that you could be 100% sure that they are airtight. You see, the more you open these containers, the less airtight they become. So, your regular containers might not work well.
I suggested small Tupperware containers because that way, you can freeze the sugar in small amounts and reduce the risk of trapping air in the containers. The bigger the containers, the higher the risk of trapped air ruining the brown sugar.
Transfer the brown sugar from its store-bought packaging and store it in whichever container suits your purposes. Don’t forget to expel as much air as you can from the containers before you seal them.
Step 2: Securing the Perfect Freezer Space
Brown sugar is notorious for absorbing other flavors. I bet you don’t want to freeze your sugar and have it smelling like garlic or onions. Or in a worst-case scenario, you have it smelling like raw fish or meat. That could be one great turn off.
You may have your freezer filled with a countless number of food items with each one having some kind of flavor or the other. I’ll advise that you rearrange your freezer so you can store the brown sugar, out of the reach of any unwanted flavor.
Label the containers with the content and date of the freeze so that you would be able to always pinpoint how long you have stored it. Pretty easy right? If you can be very meticulous about it, your brown sugar would freeze very nicely in the freezer.
How to Use Frozen Brown Sugar
Remove your frozen brown sugar from the freezer and leave it on the counter to thaw. If you notice the presence of ice crystals in the brown sugar, pay attention and stir it intermittently so that these isolated pockets of moisture do not ruin the sugar.
You could also reheat frozen brown sugar in the microwave and microwave at full power for 20 seconds. You can also reheat in an oven that has been preheated to 250°F till it gets soft. Although, the sugar would harden as soon as it cools down. So, you should only heat, just the amount you need. Be careful though, the sugar would be scalding hot.
Brown sugar is more favored in culinary roles than white sugar. So it’s a great kitchen staple to have on hand for whenever you would need it.
Why Brown Sugar Becomes Hard?
As the moisture in your brown sugar evaporates, the sugar becomes rock solid. This is the reason why you should not refrigerate your brown sugar. Food items dry out and lose moisture at a faster rate in the refrigerator.
You can keep your brown sugar from going hard by keeping it in airtight containers. Also, you can keep your brown sugar from going hard by using these terracotta pieces that are used to preserve sugar. You can get them in stores for about 3 to 5$.
You can also store brown sugar with food items that have moisture to keep them from going soft. For example, bread or apple. You can use the peel from citrus fruits but, the brown sugar would absorb the flavor of the fruit.
There are various other ways you can keep brown sugar from going hard. You can use damp paper towels, or sprinkle some water. The best way to keep your brown sugar for a lengthy period is to keep the air out.