Have you recently baked a little too much beans and have plenty of leftovers? If you’re like me, you would have done that to make it easy to serve baked beans in the future. It takes some time to bake beans and baking a lot for future use isn’t a bad idea.
The other scenario would be that you have prepared a little too much for an occasion and don’t know what to do with the leftovers. So can you freeze baked beans? The short answer is; you can. The only thing you need is the right technique in order to make is successful. So if you find baked beans on sale or happen to have over prepared, don’t worry, you can stock it up.
Last update on 2018-02-24 PST - Details
Don’t Put Hot Baked Beans Into the Freezer
You have to remember that it’s important that you allow your baked beans to cool down in order for it to freeze properly. If you immediately dunk baked beans into the freezer, it can cause the container to expand and crack down. The individual beans may also expand and crack resulting in a gunk mush the next time you cook it.
- In order for beans to easily cool down, bake it at the lowest temperature possible.
- When it is done, allow it to cool down at low temperature then place them in the refrigerator for 8 hours.
- After that, you can now transfer it to the freezer.
- Doing this will prevent the beans from splitting open.
Make sure to freeze the beans the same day it is cooked. Doing this will ensure that the beans remain fresh, unspoiled and still flavorful the next time you cook it.
Proper Packing for Baked Beans
Make sure to choose freezer safe containers for your baked beans. This kind of containers is capable of adjusting with the sudden drop in temperature. Immediately remove any excess air from the container before closing it so that bacteria and fungi are prevented from affecting the beans. You have to remember that beans have a lot of carbohydrates and protein, nutrients that bacteria and fungi love to feed on.
Use clear packaging for your beans. This way, you can see what’s going on inside the container when the beans are in storage. If you use containers with 16-ounce capacity, you have in each pack beans enough for 4 people.
Make sure to leave a little empty space in the container as an allowance for expansion as the beans freeze. This will prevent the container from bursting or popping out in the freezer.
Label the packed beans properly before putting it into the refrigerator. Put the name of the beans, the date of packing and other relevant information you think you might need.
This will prevent guessing game when the time comes to use the beans. When properly frozen, beans can last for 6 months, giving you enough time to cycle through old batches when you have new batches to store.
How to Use Frozen Baked Beans
When the time comes to use the frozen baked beans, you have to thaw it overnight in the refrigerator. Alternatively, you can use cold water, make sure it doesn’t get inside the container. If water does get in, it will change the flavor of the beans.
You can also use a saucepan on the stovetop or the microwave. This should be your last ditch effort at thawing because the result of this is not usually desirable. Make sure to add water to prevent the beans from drying out.
When thawed, the baked beans can now be reheated on the stovetop. It usually just takes a few minutes and you can now use it for other recipes. You can also serve it as it is.
Freezing is a great way to preserve baked beans. When you cook a pound of dried beans, it will usually yield approximately six cups of cooked beans, this is often more than what a regular family would need. Instead of just throwing away some excess beans, you can just freeze for later use.
Preventing the beans from splitting just require cooking it at the very low temperature. It should be low enough that you just see occasional bubbles from the pot as it boils. You can also add a little salt halfway through the process because this also prevents splitting.
Don’t freeze the beans when it’s still hot because this will result in a yucky mush the next time you cook the beans. So to answer the question: yes you can freeze beans and its even a good idea that you do.
How about you? Have you tried freezing baked beans? How did it went? Share your experience in the comment section below.