Half and half is simply a mix of both cream and milk. Half and half is a delicious addition to your coffee and it can also be used for making panna cotta, chocolate sauce, creamy scrambled eggs, and lots more. Typically, your box of half and half will come with a best by date written on it. If you still have a significant portion of the diary product left before that best by date, you’ll probably want to preserve it somehow so that it does not waste.
So, how can you preserve leftover portions of half and half?
Can you freeze half and half? Yes, you can freeze half and half for quite some time. Freezing will usually give you a preservation window of about 3 months. Because the cartons used in packing half-and-half can’t withstand freezing, it is best for you to transfer the leftover half-and-half into a freezer-safe bag.
One thing you should expect when freezing half and half is that the butter fats in it would most likely separate after being frozen and defrosted. Taking that factor into consideration, frozen half and half is best used for baking or cooking. However, if you want to put it in something else, you can simply restore its consistency by stirring it back together.
There are certain things you should know and correct steps to follow when freezing half and half. This article has been put together to provide you on the relevant information you’ll need when freezing your half-and-half. Keep reading to know more.
Now that we’ve established how well freezing preserves half-and-half, it’s time for us to pay attention to some key details. Half-and-half is a diary product with milk fats that tend to separate when frozen and defrosted. Although there may be alterations in the product’s consistency, you can return it back to normalcy by whipping the product thoroughly; note that frozen half and half is best used for cooking.
If you’ve decided to stock up on a couple cartons of half-and-half, you’ll need the details in this article to properly freeze the half-and-half.
Those who need short-term preservation for their half-and-half can use refrigeration. Refrigeration keeps leftover half and half for about 5 to 7 days – Your next best choice for long-term preservation is freezing.
How to Freeze Half-and-Half
When you follow the right steps to freeze your half-and-half, you’ll get the best results out of it. Here’s what to do:
- Before you start the freezing process keep in mind that the best way to freeze half-and-half is in smaller portions that can be consumed all at once without leaving any leftovers.
- With the individual portions measured out, grab your resealable freezer-safe bags and start transferring the half-and-half into each bag. The number of freezer-safe bags to be used is dependent on how much half-and-half you’re freezing. Also make sure that the bags aren’t too large or too small for the portions of half-and-half being frozen.
- After filling the freezer-safe bags with the desired portions of half-and-half, place them on a baking sheet and allow each bag to lay flat on its side. Remove as much air as you can from inside the freezer-safe bags so that it’s just the half-and-half filling the whole volume of the bags.
- You need to seal each bag tightly so that there won’t be any leaks and overexposure to cold freezer air.
- Go ahead to write the current date on the freezer-safe bags with a marker. The written date will keep you reminded of how long your portions of half and half have been frozen for.
- With the freezer-safe bags lying flat on the baking sheet, transfer them into the freezer and leave them in for about 2 hours. After 2 hours check to see if the half and half is totally frozen.
- Once the half-and-half is frozen solid, take it out of the freezer and take the individual freezer-safe bags off the baking sheet. Proceed to neatly stack the solid bags of frozen half-and-half in the freezer compartment.
Can You Freeze Half-and-Half in the Carton?
The carton used to pack half and half doesn’t do well in freezer conditions. For that reason, it is not advisable to freeze your leftover half and half in the carton – even if the carton of half and half hasn’t been opened it still isn’t advisable to freeze it in the carton.
Once the carton of half and half has been opened, you need to move the leftover into a resealable freezer-safe bag for long-term preservation through freezing. Remember to measure out the leftover half-and-half into smaller portions that can be consumed in one sitting.
One main reason you shouldn’t freeze half and half in its carton is that the carton doesn’t expand. Because of that, whenever the half-and-half undergoes expansion due to freezing, the carton would remain rigid and the expanding dairy product might cause the carton to rip. At this point you’ll have half-and-half leaking out of the carton and messing up your freezer.
Can You Refreeze Frozen Half-and-Half?
No, absolutely not. Once you’ve frozen and thawed a portion of half and half you should not try refreezing again. Refreezing will ruin the consistency and taste of the half-and-half.
If you choose to freeze the half-and-half in its unopened carton, just be prepared to use the whole thing once you take it out of the freezer to defrost; the same applies to an already opened carton of half-and-half.
How Long Can You Freeze Half-and-Half?
Freezing is your best shot at preserving half and half over a long period of time. However, long exposure of half and half to freezer coldbrings about changes to its original texture and taste. If you’ve followed the right steps for freezing your half-and-half, you’ll get about 3 whole months of preservation.
Your half-and-half should be kept to freeze in tightly sealed freezer-safe bags and stored at 0⁰F.
Remember to label each freezer-safe bag with the date of freezing so that you can always know how long you’ve kept the diary product frozen for.