How to freeze milk and cheese

Author: Alice Henneman, MS, RDN, Extension Educator

A frequently asked question is whether milk and cheese can be frozen. Here are the answers. 

Freezing Milk

While pasteurized milk can be frozen; it may separate or be slightly grainy when thawed. Frozen milk works best for cooking, but you may find it's still okay for drinking.

Freeze milk in plastic freezer containers or special freezer-proof glass jars. Leave some extra space at the top since milk expands during freezing. If packaged in a wide-mouth container, leave 1/2-inch head space for pints and 1-inch for quarts. If packaged in a narrow-mouth container (such as jars), leave 1 1/2-inch head space for either pints or quarts.

Plan to use frozen milk within a month. Thaw milk in the refrigerator. Stir well before using.

Freezing Cheese

Hard or semi-hard cheese can be frozen if cut in 1/2 to 1-pound blocks. Wrap in plastic wrap and then put in freezer bags. After freezing, cheese may become crumbly and mealy, but, it will retain its flavor. It works best for cooking.

Plan to use frozen cheese within 4 to 6 months. Thaw cheese in the refrigerator. Use soon after thawing.

The cheeses that freeze best are:

  •     Brick
  •     Camembert
  •     Cheddar
  •     Edam
  •     Mozzarella
  •     Muenster
  •     Parmesan
  •     Provolone
  •     Romano
  •     Swiss

Blue cheeses are more prone to becoming crumbly but they'll still taste good.

Cream cheese and cottage cheese do not freeze well.

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