The essential topping to your favorite cupcakes, cream cheese frosting is irresistibly tasty – but what if you make too much?
“Can you freeze cream cheese frosting?” I hear you ask. Well, let’s find out…
So… can you freeze cream cheese frosting?
Yes, absolutely! It’s a good job too, because so many of us make too much cream cheese icing and it’s such a shame to waste it.
However, there’s definitely a “BUT.” While you can freeze cream cheese icing, there’s a good chance the taste and texture will be negatively affected.
That’s because cream cheese frosting has a high fat content. When frozen, the fat molecules can separate from the liquid. This can turn your previously luscious creamy frosting into a watery, crumbly mess.
Cream cheese can also take on freezer flavors. So, it’s vital to get it properly packaged in the freezer.
There are ways and means of locking that texture and flavor in. That’s why it’s so important to follow the steps in this guide and keep your frosting tasting great.
Can you freeze a cake with cream cheese frosting?
I wouldn’t advise it. If you’re planning on making a cake to freeze, freeze cream cheese frosting and the cake separately.
When freezing, it’s always better to freeze things in smaller portions and seal them as best as possible. So, you’ll want to freeze the cream cheese frosting in its own separate container.
How do you defrost cream cheese frosting?
This is very simple. All you need to do is transfer the cream cheese frosting from the freezer to the refrigerator.
You’ll need to give it some time though. It’ll need several hours to fully defrost, so my advice would be to let it defrost overnight.
Never leave cream cheese frosting to defrost at room temperature. The sudden temperature change will completely ruin the taste and texture and it will be unsafe to eat.
How do you make cream cheese frosting creamy again?
Once you’ve thawed your cream cheese, you might notice that it has taken on a slightly watery or grainy texture. Don’t panic!
There’s a way to fix the texture and restore your thawed cream cheese frosting to near perfection.
Scoop your cream cheese frosting into a large mixing bowl. You then want to whisk the cream cheese frosting until it becomes nice and smooth again. You can use an electric mixer for this part, but you can also use a hand whisk or a good old fashioned balloon whisk.
If the consistency still isn’t quite right, add a tablespoon of heavy whipping cream or a splash of milk (or a combination of the two) to bring back that smooth consistency.
If it has lost some sweetness, add some powdered sugar to taste.
Keep in mind that the cream cheese frosting will need to be completely defrosted before you can whip it back into shape.
Can cream cheese frosting be left out of the refrigerator?
As with other soft cheeses, you need to be very careful with how you store cream cheese frosting. That’s because, if it’s kept above a certain temperature for too long, things can get pretty funky pretty fast.
For cream cheese frosting, storing it above 40ºF (4ºC) for an extended period of time (2 hours or more) will encourage bacterial growth. At this temperature, the cream cheese frosting will soon spoil.
So, it’s best kept in the fridge or refrigerator. If you do leave cream cheese frosting out, don’t leave it for more than 2 hours. If you do, you’ll need to cut your losses and throw it away. Remember – it’s better to be safe than sorry and you can always whip up another batch.
Can you refreeze cream cheese frosting?
Unfortunately not. Once you’ve thawed your cream cheese frosting, you won’t be able to freeze it again.
Firstly, the taste and texture of the cream cheese frosting will lose too much quality. You won’t be able to fix it. Secondly, the cream cheese frosting will be exposed to an increased growth of bacteria, which will make it unsafe to eat.
The last thing you want is foul tasting, unsafe cream cheese frosting ruining your wonderful cakes and cupcakes.
Can you freeze cookies or cupcakes with cream cheese frosting?
It’s always best to freeze cream cheese frosting separately from the cookies or cakes you make with them. However, if you’ve already made them, you can freeze them.
You’ll first need to flash freeze your cream cheese frosting covered cookies or cupcakes. Take a baking sheet and evenly place each cookie or cupcake across the sheet. Place the baking sheet in the freezer for around 3 hours.
Flash freezing helps to prevent the cookies or cupcakes from sticking together.
Once your cookies or cupcakes are properly frozen, place them all together into airtight storage containers or ziploc freezer bags. Don’t forget to label the container or bag with the contents and date of freezing.
How long does cream cheese frosting last in the freezer?
When stored properly in a freezer-safe airtight container, cream cheese frosting will last between 3 to 6 months.
The ideal is 3 months – after that, the cream cheese frosting will start to lose some of its taste and texture. It will be safe for 6 months though.
Tips on freezing cream cheese frosting
Cream cheese frosting can be easily frozen, as long as you keep these key tips in mind:
- As with any frosting, cream cheese frosting will need to be frozen as soon as possible after you’ve made it. The longer you wait, the more the quality of the frosting will suffer.
- Never leave your cream cheese frosting to defrost at room temperature. Not only will you ruin the taste and texture, it will be unsafe to eat the cream cheese frosting
- Defrost your cream cheese overnight in the refrigerator.
- Thawed cream cheese frosting can be repaired if you’ve lost the texture after it has been defrosted. Use an electric mixer to whip it until creamy.
- Once thawed, you should use your cream cheese frosting as soon as possible to avoid losing taste and texture
- Freezer bags
- Freezer safe airtight container
- Sharpie pen
- Stand mixer
- Decide on whether you want to freeze your cream cheese frosting in smaller portions or as one large portion. That way, you can defrost as much cream cheese frosting as you need.
- Place the cream cheese frosting in either an airtight container or a ziploc freezer bag. Be sure to leave a small gap at the top, to allow for expansion of the cream cheese frosting during the freezing process.
- If sealing in a freezer bag, squeeze all excess air out before sealing.
- Seal the airtight container or ziploc freezer bag.
- Label the freezer container or ziploc bag with the contents and date of freezing.
What can I do with leftover cream cheese frosting?
We’ve all done it. Made a batch of cupcakes, only to realize you’ve gone WAY overboard on the cream cheese frosting.
Whatever you do, DON’T LET IT GO TO WASTE! Use the step-by-step instructions below. Then you can work your way through this list of recipes and satisfy that sweet tooth!
- African prince pie – use your cream cheese frosting for this regal, decadent pie. Then add gold flakes, rose petals and toasted shredded coconut to seal the deal
- Chocolate fairy cakes with Amarula buttercream – mix in some Amarula – a magical South African liqueur – when whisking up your cream cheese frosting after it has defrosted. Then make these delightful little fairy cakes. They never fail to put a smile on the face of anyone which has a taste
- Chocolate orange cupcakes – a little bit of orange extract and orange food coloring are all that’s needed to turn your revived cream cheese frosting into something wonderful – in an entirely different way
- Chia seed cake – this deliciously indulgent cake is the perfect antidote to the doldrums or the humdrum of day to day life. Bake it, add your defrosted cream cheese frosting and relax with a cup of tea. Bliss!
- Cherry bakewell cake – another old-school cake tailor-made to put a smile on the face of any sweet-toothed foodie. Topped with cherries and almonds for a final irresistible flourish
- Mother’s day cupcakes – this mother’s day cupcakes are off-the-charts delicious and the perfect way to use your cream cheese frosting