Parmesan cheese is a staple for all of our favorite recipes.
Because it is a dry cheese with very little moisture content, it does keep for slightly longer than the likes of cheddar and other softer cheeses. However, in the fridge, your grated parmesan cheese will not last forever.
You may well be wondering if that huge chunk of parmesan needs to be trashed because you know you just won’t finish it in time.
The good news is, your parmesan cheese can be saved! If you have grated your cheese, you can put it in the freezer for safekeeping. Yep - you heard correctly. Your grated parmesan cheese can be frozen!
Keep reading this article to find out exactly how to freeze your grated parmesan cheese, as well as the best method to defrost it, and any factors you need to consider before you go ahead and freeze it all.
How to freeze parmesan cheese
Freezing parmesan cheese is easy when you know how, and this section will tell you exactly how to do it to preserve that tasty cheese for as long as possible. It is super versatile and is not really susceptible to freezer burn, unlike so many other foods.
We are sure it is magic because somehow it does not tend to clump together either. When it comes to freezing, we would recommend ensuring that it is fully grated - freezing a whole block of parmesan cheese is not going to work as well as grated!
Other than the grating, there is not much preparation work that needs to be done for your parmesan cheese before popping it in the freezer.
All you need in order to freeze parmesan cheese is a freezer and an airtight container or resealable freezer bag. Oh, and the parmesan cheese, of course! If you are using an airtight container, simply place all of your grated parmesan cheese in the container, ensuring there are no gaps in the container and that it is totally airtight and secure.
You can then place a label on the container detailing what is inside and the date you have frozen it too. For this method, we do also recommend doing an extra step, and this is to put the container into a resealable freezer bag. This will ensure extra protection for your container of parmesan cheese, as well as catching any spillages should something happen to the tub.
You can also simply place it solely in a resealable freezer bag. To do this method, just pop all your cheese in a good sized freezer safe bag that is secure and has the ability to seal easily and reseal.
Before sealing it, squeeze out any air that is inside, leaving it as flat as possible. Then pop a label on it with the contents and the date. Pop it in the freezer and you are good to go!
With both methods, your parmesan cheese can be kept in the freezer for up to one year! Some people even say their parmesan cheese has lasted 18 months - although we’ve always eaten it all long before that!
How to defrost parmesan cheese
Defrosting parmesan cheese is so simple. Easy cheesy, if you will…. Excuse the jokes, not very mature of us! Moving swiftly on, let’s discuss defrosting!
We always recommend giving your bag of parmesan (or container if that’s what you used) a good shake first in order to separate any small lumps of parmesan cheese that may have come together in the freezer.
Decide how much cheese you want, and grab a clean spoon or scoop to take out what you need. If you want to use the whole bag you can simply tip it out of the bag. You can then add it directly to whatever recipe you are using it for.
It does not require any thawing time and does not need to be left in a refrigerator or on a counter for any period of time. Because the parmesan cheese may lose some of its flavor, we recommend that you use your frozen cheese for recipes such as soups, pasta, and sauces.
If you do not want to use all of the parmesan cheese, simply take out what you want from your container and freezer bags and reseal the rest securely to pop back in your freezer.
If you choose to remove the whole amount of frozen parmesan cheese at once and do not get to use it all, do not refreeze it. Instead, pop it in your refrigerator where it can last for up to one month, provided it is stored correctly.
Factors to consider before freezing PARMESAN CHEESE
As with all perishable foods, you should check how fresh your grated parmesan cheese is before freezing it. To do this, look out for signs of it going bad, such as unpleasant smells, changes in taste and texture, and of course, any mold growing on the cheese.
You should not freeze grated parmesan cheese if it has any of these signs. Freezing will not undo the decay. It may stop it whilst it is frozen but as soon as it is used or defrosted it will be bad and may make you sick.
You should also consider the fact that the grated parmesan cheese may lose its strong flavor once it has been frozen. It will not have a dramatic effect overall, but if you are looking for that strong taste of parmesan you should maybe use it fresh from the refrigerator.
Frozen grated parmesan works better in recipes that are being cooked or at least, warmed. It also works well sprinkled over hot dishes such as pasta and pizza.
We are sure you are thrilled that you do not have to waste all of that lovely grated parmesan cheese.
Remember, if you do freeze it to follow our instructions above to ensure it is as delicious as possible when you come to use it again.
Check for any signs of it going bad before freezing it to ensure you don’t get sick.