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Mar 11, 2009 04:10 PM

Can one freeze fat-free 1/2 and 1/2?

Hi-I know this must be a stupid question but can you freeze fat-free half and half? I have gotten several cartons from friends over the last couple of days (I've been sick) and there is too much for me to consume before their expiration date. Just wanted to know. Thanks.

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  1. It may depend on the brand and how it's made. Land O Lakes brand says do not freeze.

    1. "Fat Free Half and Half" is, IMO, an oximoronic description of a dairy product. Most of the produces so labeled contain a little nonfat milk and a lot of additives (e.g. corn syrup and more chemicals than we'd find in a high school science lab) so freezing it shouldn't violate any of the rules I'm acquainted with for freezing foods.

      1. Probably not since there is no such thing as "fat free half and half." By definition, true half and half is half milk and half cream, so how can you freeze something that doesn't exist?

        But you can freeze milk products successfully. However, something in the freezing and thawing process "undoes" any homogenization, in my experience. So once you thaw a milk product, you have to shake it before each use in order to mix the fat back into the skim milk.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Caroline1

          Well, in this product there is no fat. It's merely something that's meant to replicate the mouthfeel of H&H.

          1. re: Karl S

            I've never seen it or heard of it before, but then I tend to feel that if nature can't make something, why should man? In any case, it doesn't sound like it runs in the same price range as, say, foie gras and Perigord trufffles. Or even chocolate truffles, for that matter. So it seems to me the very best way to find out if it will survive the freeze/thaw syndrome is to freeze some for a day or so, then see if it thaws to a tastes-good usable product. And if it separates, can it be returned to its original state (even temporarily) by shaking?

        2. fat free half and half.... ok, that's new.

          I mean, generally, I think things with more fat are more freezable. LIke, freeze milk? eh. Freeze butter? Sure!

          1. From one website:

            Fat Free Half & Half does not freeze well. The ice crystals tend to shatter the protein in the product. This causes the product to separate, giving it a watery and flecky appearance.

            I would think this would be true for most brands.

            I have tried this stuff before (someone in my office bought it for the communal coffee pot) and won't comment on how much I hated it. :)

            1 Reply
            1. re: sfumato

              I can now attest that one cannot freeze this half and half. I did so and, when unfrozen, had to junk it. it was a mess.