If you want to save money with your dairy products then it’s a good idea to freeze milk. Depending what state you live in, milk can be quite expensive. For example, organic dairy milk in California can cost $7.50 a gallon. However, freezing milk helps you save money and extend its shelf life, and the best thing, you don’t have to go to the grocery store as often.
Can You Freeze Milk
According to the Dairy Council of California, you can freeze milk before the “best by” date or before its expiration date. We’ll go over the steps below on how you can freeze regular dairy milk and also how to freeze soy milk.
Best Way To Freeze Dairy Milk
You can freeze milk in its original plastic container. If your milk didn’t come in a plastic container, pour it into a freezer-safe container for best results. Don’t freeze it in a cardboard or glass container. Milk expands when frozen which may make the glass or cardboard container to break. Also, since your milk will expand, don’t fill your container full, leave some room for expansion (1 or 2 inches). Frozen milk can stay up to 3 months in the freezer so make sure you write the date on the container.
if you want to freeze the whole gallon of milk, remove about a cup of milk from the container to make room for expansion. Stand the gallon upright and freeze.
How to Thaw Your Milk
For safety, your milk needs to be thawed in cold water or in the refrigerator. Don’t leave the milk out in room temperature. A better way to thaw the milk is slowly in the refrigerator overnight.
Your milk will keep all its nutrients after freezing but the texture of your milk may be a bit grainy after thawing. This is because the fat separates. If that happens, just shake the milk in the container and it should return to its original texture. You can also just stir the milk with a mixer to get the fats mixed back in the original state. Consume your thawed milk within 3 to 4 days.
You can freeze milk in ice cube trays. Fill each ice cube compartment about 3/4 full to allow for expansion.
Can You Freeze Soy Milk?
As a commonly used alternative to regular milk from a cow, soy milk is popular for those consumers who are lactose intolerant, who are vegan, and also those people who want to remain dairy-free in their regular diets. If you see a carton of soy milk on sale at your local supermarket, how would you react to it? Most of us would want to buy a few cartons of the soy milk in order to save some money and a few extra trips to the grocery store.
However, what if you can’t consume all of your soy milk right away and need to store it safely without the product going bad? There are two options to this question: You can either throw out the unused and unopened soy milk wasting precious money and time, or you can freeze and store the soy milk for the next couple of months until you’re ready to drink or use the product. However, you might be wondering as the reader, can you freeze soy milk?
The answer to this hotly debated question is yes, you can freeze the soy milk. Before you open the freezer up and put the soy milk in, there are a few steps to freezing the soy milk that you must be aware of during the process.
The Freezing Process
Before you can begin the freezing process, it is important to be aware of a few things regarding soy milk itself. Freezing it may not be beneficial to the liquid content of the soy milk. Because of this fact, freezing the soy milk should be a last resort rather than a first option.
Still, it’s better than wasting your soy milk by throwing it away without drinking it. If you can’t use the product immediately, freezing the product will extend its lifespan but the taste and texture of the soy milk may be affected. Lastly, check to make sure that the soy milk is close to its expiration date. Freezing the soy milk in bulk correctly will help extend the expiration date by a few months.
Most producers of soy milk would not recommend freezing their product due to the negative changes to texture, and flavor that are likely to occur during the process. You should be aware that the taste of your soy milk may not be as delicious as it was before the freezing and thawing processes. If you are to still go through with the freezing process for soy milk, remember to adhere to these following steps:
- Be sure to choose a container or freezer bag that is a few sizes larger than the total amount of liquid by volume of your soy milk. Soy milk is largely made of water and a few other ingredients. Water is known to change its composition and texture during the freezing process. Therefore, the soy milk liquid needs space in the container or freezer bag to expand and adapt during freezing.
- If you give the soy milk contents enough to space to expand, then your container or bag won’t leak or explode in your freezer. The container or freezer bag that you decide to use should also be airtight which will prevent the soy milk from being affected by any outside odors during freezing.
- Before you put the soy milk in the freezer, remember to seal it tightly in the container or bag. Mark and label the date of first freezing for your soy milk in a permanent marker. You may use multiple containers or bags if you have multiple servings of soy milk that you would like to preserve.
- Soy milk will have likely expanded during the freezing process so be careful when opening the contents a few months later.
The Thawing Process
As mentioned before, please be sure to freeze the soy milk before the ‘expiration / best used by’ date or it’s likely the contents of the product will deteriorate quickly after freezing. It’s best to use your soy milk after freezing for about a time period of two to three months total. To correctly thaw out the frozen soy milk, it is recommended to immediately put the soy milk in the refrigerator for several hours or up to a whole day after removing the product from the freezer. After the soy milk has been wisely thawed out, it is important for the ingredients to be stirred or shaken together again and improve the overall texture which will have drastically changed over the past few months.
Now that you know that you can freeze milk, what’s next? Well, the soy milk can be used for a number of useful purposes. The most popular uses are as a substitute for cow’s milk (dairy), an addition to baked goods, and as an ingredient for soups and other healthy drinks. Be aware that soy milk that has been thawed and frozen for a few months should be used immediately and it’s important to never refreeze this product again.