In this article, we will answer the question “Can you freeze tea?”, and what are the dos and don’t of freezing tea?
Can you freeze tea?
Yes, you can freeze tea. Whether loose tea, tea bags, or brewed tea, you can freeze tea. But does this mean that you should? The answer to this question depends on the type of eta you intend to freeze.
To prevent the frozen tea leaves or tea bags from losing during thawing, steep them right away. Reheating further deprives the flavor of the frozen tea. You often end up with a slightly bitter aftertaste as a result of reheating green, black, and white tea.
Simple green tea or plain black tea freeze quite well. This only applies if the container of the tea is unopened and air-tight. It is not recommended to refreeze an opened tin of tea.
Complex tea, with tea leaves, dried fruits, herbs, or infused flavors is not freezer-safe. The freezing temperatures damage the fragile flavors of such types of tea.
Already brewed tea can be frozen but it will inevitably lose some of its aromas when reheated. It is better to use frozen brewed tea as-is.
Brewing tea for freezing
Get your hands on the premium quality tea leaves or tea blends to make the brew last longer in the freezer.
Opt for mildly nutty or fruity flavored teas like Peach Bellini Herbal Tea, Pineapple Pop Herbal Tea, Caramel Almond Black Tea, Porch Sippin’ Pecan Black Tea, or Oregon Breakfast Black Tea with hazelnut and orange.
Brew your tea slightly stronger than usual if you intend to freeze it. It will ensure that the flavor of the tea arrives at the desired level even after the flavor loss that occurs due to thawing. The next step is to sweeten your brew. You could use any sweetener such as maple dust, honey dust or tea sugar, etc.
Unless the brew contains a fruity blend, you can add milk to the tea before freezing. The milk will thaw just fine and won’t curdle if the tea was frozen correctly.
Best containers for freezing brewed tea
You can use both glass jars or plastic containers for freezing brewed tea. You risk a glass explosion inside your freezer if you use poor-quality glass containers and do not leave ample headspace.
This is because the liquid expands during freezing. If not given enough room to expand, it will push the container beyond its limit and result in an explosion.
With all the things considered, your best bet is to opt for plastic containers. Plastic bottles are more flexible and won’t spill the brew as long as you leave a sufficient headspace of 1-2 inches.
Last but not the least, you can pour your brewed tea in an ice cube tray or popsicle molds. So that you can thaw as many frozen cubes of brewed tea as you want at a time.
The dos and don’ts of freezing tea?
The tea leaves need to be protected from moisture. When exposed to moisture, tea starts to steep, irrespective of the temperature of the water. Therefore, you should never freeze tea or tea bags in their original cardboard containers.
Put the tea leaves in a freezer bag instead and squeeze out as much air as possible without crushing the leaves under pressure. Packing the tea too tightly into the air-tight container is not good practice. A bit of air in between the tea leaves won’t hurt.
If stored in an open container, tea quickly absorbs the outside flavors. Always store your tea in an air-tight container away from strong-smelling foods in your freezer.
Do not place the tea container in direct sunlight. Heat damages the quality of the tea by destroying its heat-sensitive compounds. You need to be cautious if you are using transparent or translucent containers to store tea.
Using unclean containers to store tea is an invitation to spoilage to occur. Dirty containers trigger microbial growth and deem your tea unfit for consumption.
Freeze tea in batches
Always store your tea in small multiple containers. Because frequent opening and closing of the tea container introduces moisture into the tea. If the tea portion is small, it will be used up before it goes bad.
Store once, use once
Refreezing tea is a bad idea. Tea leaves are too fragile to withstand two thawing-and-freezing cycles.
Putting a label on the tea container with the date of storage helps you keep track of its shelf-life.
Don’t freeze Pu Erh
The longer you let the Pu Erh mature, the better it tastes. Freezing only halts the maturing process. So you should never freeze Pu Erh.
Other FAQs about Tea that you may be interested in.
In this article, we answered the question “Can you freeze tea?”, and what are the dos and don’t of freezing tea?