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You will probably be glad to hear that you can freeze shredded cheese without any problems at all. It is perfectly alright to freeze shredded cheese so that you can save it for a later date, but you should be aware that freezing cheese may sacrifice some of its quality.
Just because you can freeze shredded cheese, doesn’t necessarily mean that you should. The quality of the cheese simply will not be the same after you have frozen it, and the taste and texture are not guaranteed to be the same afterward.
However, if your only goal is to stop the cheese from going out of date, and you don’t mind too much about the difference in taste and texture that you might find, then there is absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t freeze it.
If you are freezing shredded cheese with the intention of using it for melted cheese when it has been defrosted, then you also might not have as many issues with it. Whether or not you freeze your shredded cheese is entirely up to you and your personal preference.
How to Freeze Shredded Cheese?
Shredded cheeses that come prepackaged, like mozzarella, that is specifically designed to be melted for a variety of reasons are usually the best to freeze.
It is actually more convenient to freeze this cheese, as you will have it readily available for any occasion. We will talk you through the process of how to freeze your shredded cheese below.
If the shredded cheese that you want to freeze is still in its original sealed packaging, and it has not been opened, then your job is pretty easy.
It is best to leave the shredded cheese in its original packaging, as it is specifically designed to protect the contents. All that you need to do is put the bag of cheese straight in the freezer, and your dob is done.
However, if you do not have the original packaging or the seal has been broken, you should use a new zip-lock freezer bag to store it in instead. This will help to keep the cheese fresh and sealed and protect it from freezer burn.
Once you have placed all of the cheese inside the bag, you will need to push out the excess air before you seal it. This will limit the amount of oxygen that can get to the cheese, and make more room in your freezer.
You could also choose to keep the cheese in an airtight container instead of a ziplock bag, but it is completely up to you which one that you want to use.
Learn more about whether you can freeze cheese that isn’t shredded.
You might also be wondering, can you freeze salsa?
How to Defrost Shredded Cheese?
When it is finally time to defrost and use your cheese, you will need to either defrost it overnight in the refrigerator or leave it out at room temperature for just twenty minutes.
Due to the fact that the cheese was shredded before being frozen, it will defrost much more quickly than a block of cheese would. This is why it shouldn’t take too long to defrost at all.
Though there are these two methods of defrosting your shredded cheese, for the best results, we recommend that you defrost your cheese in the refrigerator as it will have a better overall texture.
Defrosting at room temperature will make the cheese much more moist, and it can clump together, making it much more difficult to use. When it defrosts in the refrigerator, it does so slowly and in a controlled manner. The colder temperatures will keep the consistency of the cheese as normal.
As well as these two methods of defrosting, you could choose to defrost it quicker by using it from frozen. If your intention is to melt the cheese into a dish, then you can take it straight from the freezer to add it to your meal.
Once the cheese has been melted, any changes in taste and texture will be hardly noticeable, so this is the best way to use it.
It is known that any cheese that is maintained at zero degrees Fahrenheit will last almost indefinitely once it has been frozen but for the best results, you should consume your shredded cheese within three months of you freezing it.
You can write a label on the container or freezer bag with the date it was frozen on to help you keep track of how long it has been frozen.
Factors to Consider Before Freezing Shredded Cheese
Something that you should know is that when you freeze cheese, ice crystals will form within the cheese once it has been stored in the freezer, and this is the thing that will affect the taste and texture of the cheese.
The water will expand as the cheese is being frozen, and it will then contract once it is being thawed. This action will work to break down the molecules that create the overall structure of the cheese, which will eventually cause it to become very crumble inconsistently after being frozen.
This might not be too much of an issue in terms of the texture of shredded cheese, but it will definitely affect the flavor.
The best types of cheese that you can freeze more efficiently are those that are industrially produced. These are the types of cheese that can be frozen with the least loss of quality, remaining more or less the same once they have been frozen and defrosted.
These cheeses are the ones that you buy in the grocery store, as opposed to those you would buy freshly made and packaged. Generally, any fresh or soft cheese should not be frozen due to the huge loss of quality, but cream cheese does freeze well.
Those cheeses that are well-aged and harder grating cheeses, like pecorino Romano and parmesan, are typically the best types of shredded cheese to use for freezing.
They will be almost the same once they have been frozen and defrosted, with very little loss of quality. However, sometimes, these types of cheeses can develop a metallic taste once they have been stored in the freezer, which isn’t very pleasant.