Frozen yogurt is a crowd favorite during the summer, but you can enjoy it any time of the year. Buying it in bulk and having some leftovers is unavoidable, and it would be a waste to throw it out or have it go bad. So, how can you properly store frozen yogurt? We'll be listing the best methods for you.
Small individual frozen yogurts are easier to store. Simply pop then into the freezer and leave them there as long as you need to. Large tubs of frozen yogurt can be stored in different ways:
- Use an ice cube tray. Scoop out the frozen yogurt from the tub and section it into the tray. You can also put a stick in the middle to eat it like popsicles.
- Portion the frozen yogurt into freezer cups before throwing it into the freezer.
- Put the frozen yogurt into silicone molds and pop them into the freezer.
- Put the frozen yogurt into Ziplock bags--though this may not be the most eco-friendly solution.
It's one thing to properly store frozen yogurt, but consuming it after freezing is another thing. There are other things to consider especially if you have much of it left, and if frozen yogurt nears the expiration date. If you are curious and want to learn more, keep reading below!
How to Properly Thaw Frozen Yogurt
Frozen yogurt has a creamy, soft consistency. After freezing, you wouldn't want your frozen yogurt to have a thin consistency that you can't enjoy. If you immediately thaw it at room temperature, the fat will remain separate from the liquid part and have an almost-watery consistency.
To have the ideal consistency, you need to thaw your froyo slowly. Once you take it out of the freezer, you can pop it in the fridge for a few minutes to slow the thawing process.
If you forgot to thaw it in the fridge, you can thaw it in cold water instead. Simply place the container with the yogurt in a bowl filled with iced water.
If you see a layer of water on top of the frozen yogurt, this doesn't mean it has gone completely bad. The icicles are the last to thaw, and they can contain some of the flavors from the froyo.
As long as it doesn't smell bad, taste bad, and there is no mold, simply mix the watery layer with the thawed froyo; the flavors should reintegrate back.
You can reduce the number of icicles that can form by stirring the froyo every 15 minutes as it freezes. Of course, this is only possible if you intend to eat it in a short while.
How Long Does Frozen Yogurt Last?
Froyos can stay good for up to two months in the freezer. Arguably, you can consume them up to the last "best before" date as long as they are properly placed in the freezer.
Once the frozen yogurt has thawed, you need to consume it immediately. Being exposed to icicles makes it more prone to going bad, so you shouldn't keep it at room temperature for more than an hour.
Generally, yogurt contains probiotics that thrive above 98F and below 130F. Freezers are an optimal environment for them, but they shouldn't be taken in and out at random. One experiment saw that bacteria tend to lay dormant within a 35-day freezing period--meaning they didn't make the yogurt spoil.
The bacteria are awakened once the yogurt is thawed, which is why you thawing it slowly is a healthier choice.
If the froyo is low-fat, it can stay for another 1-2 weeks in the fridge, but you will need to eat it immediately after that extra time.
How Healthy is Frozen Yogurt?
Regular yogurt contains probiotics that aid our digestive system. However, most of these good bacteria are lost in the freezing process. These sweet treats can still be consumed by health-conscious people if it has been made with almond milk, unsweetened soy yogurt, and topped with flaxseeds.
Regular froyos should be eaten in moderation. As much as possible, it is best to eat with frozen berries instead of sugary toppings.
Should you Freeze Regular Yogurt?
It is ideal not to freeze regular yogurt since the process can break the protein networks in it, reducing its health benefits. As much as possible, you should immediately consume opened yogurt to prevent mold or bad bacteria from accumulating on the surface.
If you want to enjoy the smooth and creamy consistency of regular yogurt, it is best to eat once opened. That way, you won't have to deal with the anxiety of not knowing whether they're still good or have gone bad.
Can you Freeze Yogurt When it's Near Expiring?
If the seal is unopened, you can still freeze it for another 2-3 weeks and consume it immediately after. Frozen yogurt has a little more shelf life than regular yogurt, which can last inside the freezer for up to 2 months past the "Best Before" date.
If the yogurt has been opened, you shouldn't let it sit in the fridge for more than 5 days since its milk can easily go bad. You can freeze it, but it won't have the same quality once it thaws and it wouldn't be appetizing to consume. If you insist on freezing it, it is best to save it for a baking project or a smoothie.
How to Know if Frozen Yogurt has Gone Bad
As with any food--especially ones involving dairy--you need to trust your senses. If it looks bad, smells bad, and tastes bad, then it's a sure sign that it needs to be thrown away. It doesn't matter how effective you think you may have stored it; you shouldn't risk eating something that already seems bad.
It may be natural for yogurt to have a slight tang of sourness, but if it smells sourer than usual, it's time to get rid of it.
Mold forming on the surface
This one is obvious: if you notice even a small spot on the surface, it means it will make you sick. The mold might have grown from the icicles that have melted while in the fridge, which is a result of improper storage.
There's a glaring difference between creamy and curdling. If you notice that the froyo has divided into ugly chunks, it is best to throw it out before anyone else eats it. Curdling means the pH level of milk has dropped and has turned acidic.
Again, this is what happens when dairy goes back and becomes acidic. Although a slightly sour tang is natural for fresh frozen yogurt, too much of the taste can signal that the yogurt has seen better days. It is best not to take the risk; just get yourself another fresh froyo.
What Happens if you Eat Spoiled Yogurt?
Eating spoiled food will always result in food poisoning, but you may experience worse symptoms if you consume spoiled dairy. This is because they contain more bacteria that can harm you.
How bad your condition can be will depend on the amount of spoiled yogurt you've consumed. Aside from diarrhea, you may experience nausea, abdominal cramping, and vomiting.
Your electrolytes will become imbalanced because of the amount of liquids exiting your body, further weakening your immune system. When this happens, seek medical attention immediately to prevent your condition from worsening.
Storing your froyos properly will ensure that you get to enjoy their creaminess and sweetness for days to come. Remember that dairy is a little more tricky to store and riskier to consume if you're no longer sure if it's still good.
To stay on the safe side, make sure you follow the "Best Before" date and follow storage instructions properly.