Can You Refreeze Bread?
Can You Refreeze Bread?

Freezing bread is a common practice of storing bread when you have too much bread and want to prolong its shelf-life. Homemade bread usually lasts for 4 days, while store-bought bread lasts for 7 days at room temperatures. Frozen bread can last for months and it’s a handy solution – whenever you’re out of bread just thaw it and voila! Enjoy in a fresh loaf.

However, many people misjudge how much bread do they need and end up with an excessive amount of thawed bread that could go to waste. It’s well-known that the bread quickly becomes stale once it’s taken out of the freezer, so there are a few options – eat it, make bread crumbs or freeze it again.

Can you refreeze bread that was previously frozen?

There is a question – is refreezing bread safe?

Yes, refreezing bread that has been thawed is perfectly safe, but you should be aware that you could end up with stale bread, due to moisture loss. To improve refrozen bread taste it’s the best idea to toast it.

Bread can be refrozen within two days of thawing, but try to freeze it again as soon as possible. It doesn’t matter is it whole loaf, sliced bread, or leftover pieces – the longer they’re left out quicker will begin to dry out. It would be best to refreeze it in a day since thawing, but two days will work, too.

Frozen bread taste and texture are far from fresh bread – the texture is dry and crumbly, while the taste is somehow stale and only reminds of a fresh loaf of bread. However, that’s not a big problem – you can always toast it and top it with butter or spreads you like.

How to freeze and refreeze bread properly?

Freezing and refreezing bread doesn’t require some special methods – it’s a pretty simple procedure, but many people make mistakes that cause freezer burn to the bread. Freezer burn will additionally ruin bread’s taste and here is how to avoid them:

Preparing bread

Slices of bread will faster freeze, thaw and it will have a better taste than a whole loaf of bread. Before freezing slice bread into pieces for best results.

Tip: Very important! To avoid freezer burn never put warm bread into the freezer. Wait until the bread is completely cooled, or else warmth will cause moisture to condensate, creating ice crystals which will lead to freezer burns.

Packing

Once your bread is sliced it’s ready to be packed. Put all slices together and wrap them in a freezer bag. Try to squeeze as much air as possible, without ruining the bread texture. Removing excess air will prevent the stale bread phenomenon.

Bread can be frozen in slices or in loafs
Bread can be frozen in slices or in loafs (shutterstock.com)

Once the bread is wrapped in a freezer bag and sealed tightly, wrap it again in another freezer bag or aluminum foil.

Double packing (freezer bags or plastic wrap + aluminium foil) will prevent air from getting in touch with bread and also there will be less risk of freezer burns. Freezing bread in an airtight container is also a good storage method.

Freezing

When you finish wrapping, put a little label with a date on the packaging and refreeze your bread.

Frozen bread can be used within 6 months, but for optimal results take it out of the freezer and use it within 3 months. Slicing bread will allow you to take out the exact amount of bread you need, without thawing and refreezing it a couple of times.

How to thaw frozen bread safely?

There are three common ways of thawing bread and each one of them works well. Which method will you choose depends mostly on how fast do you need it and for what will bread be used.

How to thaw bread at room temperature?

Thawing bread at room temperature is easy.

Simply take your bread out of the freezer and leave it covered in a bread box at room temperature to thaw. Depending on how thick slices are, bread could thaw within 10 and 40 minutes. If you had an entire loaf of bread, it would be best to leave it to thaw overnight.

This method is good when you’re not in a hurry and don’t need bread right away, but at some point during the day.

How to thaw bread in the microwave?

Thawing bread in the microwave is the fastest method of all. Take as many slices as you need and put them in a microwave for 15 to 60 seconds, medium-high setting.

After a given period of time, your bread should be thawed, warm and moist.

As much as microwaving method is fast, it has some downsides – microwaved bread can come out steaming hot, wet, and limp, but at least it won’t be dry and it won’t have a taste stale.

How to thaw bread in the toaster?

Thawing bread in the toaster is also a fast method (not as fast as previous, but still it will take only a few minutes). Simply put slices into the toaster and wait for a few minutes. Voila – perfect toast is ready!

You can thaw bread at room temperature, in the microwave or in the toaster
You can thaw bread at room temperature, in the microwave or in the toaster (shutterstock.com)

Toasting frozen bread will remove its stale taste, no matter what type of bread you had refrozen. Bread will retain same quality, but this method can be a bit problematic if you do not need toast, but except that it works perfectly.

The same method can be used in the oven – with an entire loaf of bread or slices.

Can you freeze bread twice?

You can refreeze your bread once, but refreezing it more than once is not recommendable.

To be clear, it’s completely safe to freeze bread twice (refreeze bread two times is fine) – your bread won’t be spoiled, but freezing it twice will ruin its texture and taste.

When you eat bread that has been freezer twice it will taste weird, while the texture will be dry.

To avoid this unpleasant experience simply throw away once thawed bread and buy bread you’ll enjoy.

Can you refreeze sourdough bread?

No, you shouldn’t freeze or refreeze bread made out of sourdough.

Sourdough is specific – it makes wonderfully airy, soft, and chewy inside, while bread crust is beautifully crunchy and crispy. When you make homemade bread out of sourdough, avoid freezing it even once, and especially avoid sourdough bread refreeze, because you’ll end up with lower quality bread.

Sourdough won’t spoil once it’s frozen and thawed, but all its characteristics due to which we love it will be changed. During defrosting, the crust will become soft instead of being crunchy, while the inside will become soggy. For best results eat it fresh.

Tip: Also do not refreeze fresh bread dough. It will lose its texture and taste and it wont rise during the baking.

Can you refreeze french bread?

Like with all other bread kinds, french style bread or baguette can be frozen once. All more than that will reflect on its quality. You won’t enjoy eating refreezed baguette, but if you still decide to refreeze it, thaw it in the oven.

Put the loaf into the oven that’s been preheated to 350 degrees F and bake the loaf for about 40 minutes. That way bread retain its flavor and crunchy texture.

Citations:

  • https://www.myrecipes.com/extracrispy/how-to-defrost-bread-without-destroying-it
  • https://foodsguy.com/refreeze-bread/
  • https://www.express.co.uk/life-style/food/1355122/Can-you-refreeze-bread-evg
  • https://cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/33981/refreezing-already-thawed-bread