Can you freeze cheese? Absolutely! Here are some tips on how to freeze cheese (the RIGHT way), which varieties freeze best, and how to serve after freezing.
If you have enjoyed learning these freezing tips, be sure to check out our other easy tutorials on How To Freeze Bananas, How To Freeze Avocado, and How to Freeze Cookie Dough!
Can You Freeze Cheese?
Yes, it can be done. However, there are a few things you may want to consider. First of all, not all cheeses are suited for freezing, in fact, most aren’t. Secondly, for the few varieties that do freeze well, you will want to make sure you do it the RIGHT way (as discussed below). Lastly, cheese that has been frozen isn’t as versatile as fresh. You will only want to use it in certain ways.
Best Cheeses To Use
Typically any of the semi-hard or brick cheeses are ok to freeze. Some examples of these are:
- Cheddar (block, sliced, or shredded)
- Colby Jack (block, sliced, or shredded)
- Monterey Jack (block, sliced, or shredded)
- Mozzarella (shredded)
- Provolone (block or sliced)
OK (But Not Great) Varieties
These cheeses CAN be frozen but your results may be highly varied. These include:
- Blue Cheese
- Cream Cheese
Worst Cheeses To Use
Any curd or soft, ripened varieties aren’t great for freezing. Also, fancy, hand-crafted cheese doesn’t freeze well. They are known for their texture and taste and are best eaten fresh. Similarly, hard varieties, such as Parmesan, don’t freeze well. They last a very long time in the refrigerator so there’s no point in freezing them anyway. Here are the kinds that don’t freeze well:
- Cottage Cheese
- Processed Cheese (such as Velveeta)
Shredded Cheese (Preferred Method)
Store-bought, pre-shredded is always going to be a good bet. You can keep it in its original packaging and put it straight in the freezer. You can also shred cheese from a block and then freeze it (I prefer this to freezing an entire block. I have provided some instructions below on how to do this. You can freeze shredded cheese for up to 2 months before losing quality. You can thaw before using or we have had success melting frozen shredded cheese directly into casseroles and other hot dishes.
Block Or Sliced Cheese
To freeze block (no larger than 1 pound) or sliced cheese, place in a Ziplock freezer bag (still in its original packaging), press the air out and seal tightly. If the original packaging has been removed, you can wrap the cheese tightly in plastic cling wrap or aluminum foil and then place in a Ziplock freezer bag for freezing. For sliced, make sure each individual slice is separated with parchment paper before wrapping and bagging. You can freeze block or sliced cheese for up to 2 months.
Tips For Thawing:
If you are thawing your frozen cheese, it is always best to thaw slowly in the refrigerator. This can take up to 48 hours depending on the size of your shreds or block. It’s also ok to go from frozen (if using shredded) to melting in soups, casseroles, or in the microwave to melt over your favorite dishes.
Serving and Cooking Suggestions
Even if you do everything perfectly, freezing will inevitably affect the texture. It is best to grate, melt, or crumble cheese that has been frozen so the texture differences aren’t as noticeable. It usually isn’t great when sliced or served cubed on a cheese board after it has been frozen. Melting into casseroles, soups, or other hot dishes such as macaroni and cheese are perfectly fine. Melting sliced cheese over burgers or grilled cheese sandwiches will work well also.
What Else Can Be Frozen?
Well, I love this question because you can freeze entire MEALS with ease! Making meals ahead of time and freezing them is a lifesaver. It can save SO much time each month! In fact, I love freezer meals so much, I have created videos where you can make 10 freezer meals in just one hour. It is called Freezer Meals LIVE and it will make your life so much easier! Check out the details HERE.
Freezing cheese doesn’t affect the flavor much but it does affect the texture. This is why it is best for melting rather than thawing and trying to use fresh in recipes. See “Serving and Cooking Suggestions” above for more ideas on how to best use frozen cheese in recipes.
Store bought cheese can last up to 4-6 weeks in the fridge, unopened. Because it lasts so long in the fridge you may not even need to freeze it.
Cheese is only good for 5-7 days after opening. That’s where freezing comes in. If you don’t think you can eat all of it in a week or less, freezing is the way to go.
How To Freeze Shredded Cheese
- Shred cheddar cheese and place in plastic freezer bag (such as Ziplock)
- Add 1 tablespoon of cornstarch per pound of cheese to bag.Seal bag and shake until cornstarch evenly covers all of the cheese shreds.Press air our of the bag and re-seal tightly. To reduce freezer burn you may double bag.
- Freeze cheese for up to 2 months without losing quality. Cheese that has been frozen is best for melting into soups, casseroles, or pastas.