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Freezing cream cheese - DON'T

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I don't know if this is common knowledge or not, but it doesn't work - the cream cheese sort of separates and turns grainy when you thaw it out, turns into nasty dry particles mixed with liquid.

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  1. True, but it depends on what you're using it for. I just made a cheesecake from previous frozen cream cheese and it turned out fine...just bring to room temperature and don't freak out over the texture.

    4 Replies
    1. re: susan1353

      It works with blocks of Philadelphia brand. I wouldn't freeze cream cheese in plastic containers, because that's usually whipped with other ingredients.

      1. re: susan1353

        Well, that's good to know, since I've got most of a 3-lb. block in the freezer... good excuse to make a cheesecake!

        1. re: susan1353

          That's odd... I've done the same thing. I have noticed that blocks of cream cheese fare better than the tubs, and I've never frozen low-fat cream cheese. I think if you're using it for baking, where it will be well creamed into the batter, it will work, but not so much if you want to use it as a spread.

          On a similar note, I froze a tub of marscapone and it still made a lovely tiramisu. I don't think I even noticed a difference in texture when I was mixing it in.

          1. re: susan1353

            Yup, I've done that puhlenty of times, too. I don't use the lowfat stuff, only the good stuff, so perhaps that makes a difference. But no problems using frozen cream cheese for some things. :)

          2. agree with bat guano -- i froze philly cream cheese in foil block. yuk. even at room temp. maybe ok for cheesecake....can't say....but it just was bad texture...

            1 Reply
            1. re: alkapal

              I had the same thing happen to frozen cream cheese and wouldn't do it again.

            2. The sell by date on cream cheese is usually 6 months away, so why even freeze it?

              9 Replies
              1. re: coll

                good point, coll.

                1. re: alkapal

                  Yep, cream cheese is like sour cream in that way. It can last damn near forever in the fridge. I've only ever had cream cheese go bad in the fridge once, and it was buried in the back *months* past the expiration date.

                  1. re: greglor

                    I want to make a pumpkin cake roll with a cream cheese icing in the middle. Does anybody know if this will freeze well?

                2. re: coll

                  Well, some of us buy the multi-packs from Costco, which are a fair bit cheaper, and so freezing it makes sense if we're using it for baking down the road...

                  1. re: Full tummy

                    How does yours defrost, Full tummy? I bought it when on sale and froze it. Big mistake, it defrosted yukkily.

                    1. re: dolores

                      When you defrost the cream cheese, you'll want to whirl it in a food processor to re-integrate it otherwise it will be grainy and separated. I usually use frozen cream cheese in baked or cooked dishes - not straight. Or you can buzz in the processor with some flavourings (like dill or green onion or smoked salmon) for a delicious flavoured cream cheese and it will be fine.

                      1. re: Nyleve

                        hmmmm, a save!? i thought mine was hopeless....processor, huh? good to know...

                        1. re: Nyleve

                          That's what it was, grainy and separted and yukky looking.

                          Thanks on the processor tip, Nyleve.

                          1. re: dolores

                            I always use my frozen cream cheese in a cream cheese tart, so it gets blended with eggs and such. I agree that I wouldn't want to eat the thawed cream cheese on a bagel, but when it's mixed and cooked, I haven't noticed a difference, and nobody else does, either.

                  2. i'll bet if it is still in it's original foil seal, it will last a veeeeerrrrrry long time.....

                    about freezing the pumpkin roll, why not wrap really well and just refrigerate? i would hesitate (BIG TIME) to freeze it.

                    1. Actually, I do it all the time with very little ill effects.

                      DT

                      1. Cream cheese, locally, at the very BEST price, is $3.29 for an 8 ounce package, when it's on sale for as little as $1.33, I WILL buy several and freeze them. No, I don't use it for dips, or anything that depends on it being smooth. There is little texture change, when it's re-integrated with the separated liquid, and used for baking.

                        AnnieG

                        1. I have made some mushroom pate with cream cheese as one of the ingredients and I wondered if this would freeze well?

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: RosyLee

                            mushrooms don't freeze well, and cream cheese doesn't freeze well. i'm gonna go out on a limb and guess "no."

                            if you want to cook it once you thaw it -- maybe making a sauce for pasta -- then i suppose it might be OK.

                            i'd just wrap it well, refrigerate and eat it up over the next few days. if your mushrooms were cooked, it should last a week in the fridge, depending on the other ingredients.

                          2. Vacuum seal the entire unopened package, put the date on an outer lable. Freeze for up to a year. When ready to thaw it out, put it in the refridgerator the day before needed. When I find the 8oz. packages are on sale for $1.00 each, thats the time to stock up and freeze some.

                            1. I just made this mistake. Bought a 6-pack of foil-wrapped blocks at Costco and froze 5 of them. Just thawed the first one and it was grainy and crumbly. I creamed it in a mixing bowl with a rubber spatula and it reintegrated surprisingly well. Not as creamy as fresh, but definitely spreadable and not gross on a bagel.

                              1. I freeze cream cheese all the time; it does separate BUT there is no flavor change. And if you use it in something that requires mixing with a blender, mixer or food processor with other ingredients, there is no noticeable difference.

                                1. I just tried to make a cheesecake from frozen cream cheese and it was so gritty then I found this site and read about the food processor trick and gave it a try and it worked wonderfully thankyou so much