In this brief guide we will address the question, “can you refreeze soup?” as well as other questions pertaining to the subject at hand like how to thaw frozen soup and what are the tips for storing items in the freezer.
Can you refreeze soup?
As long as you heat it after thawing, you can refreeze soup. The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service recommend heating thawed foods to a temperature of 165F before refreezing them.
The key thing to keep in mind is that you should always bring it to a full boil before refreezing it. This case is very similar when it comes to reheating. It is not recommended, but when you take the necessary precautions, it is not half bad.
A good idea to prevent refreezing is actually storing things in small portions, but sometimes they take up too much space in the freezer. Well, don’t worry if you only need a small portion from the full bowl that you put in the freezer.
A question that many people would ask themselves is, “Do I really need to reheat/boil all the soup even if I need just a small portion from it?” The answer is yes. When you thaw and heat, you actually introduce more bacteria into your frozen food. Note that the temperature where bacteria grow most is 4-60-degree Celsius. So while you are thawing your soup and making plans with how you are going to serve it, you are also allowing more bacteria to enter that need to be taken care of.
Boiling is an excellent way to kill those bacteria. Moreover, it stops the bacteria from dividing further. Microorganisms are always looking for favourable conditions to grow and we need to make sure that they don’t get those conditions. This is why proper thawing and boiling are imperative when it comes to handling frozen food products.
Having said all this, there are some exceptions as well. To read about them, click here.
How to thaw frozen soup?
The best way to thaw frozen soup is to put it in the refrigerator overnight. This is the ideal practice that ensures a steady temperature of 4-degree celsius. This is the temperature where minimum growth of bacteria will occur.
A common mistake while thawing frozen soup is leaving it in the pantry. Your kitchen shelf and air has more bacteria than you think! Moreover, the temperature will facilitate the growth of already existing bacteria in your soup. Yes! You read it right, there will always be some quantity of microorganisms in your food. It is only when they are more in number that they are able to multiply exponentially and potentially damage or spoil the food.
How to refreeze soup so it doesn’t go bad
If you want to preserve your soup just for a day or two, then freezing may not be the best option for you because it requires a huge amount of preparation time. Just put it in an airtight container and put it in the fridge.
- Proper cooling.
When going for freezing soup, you need to make sure that the soup is not very hot to go into the freezer. This will alter the texture of your soup when you freeze it and you won’t get the desired results. You don’t have to refrigerate it to cool it down, just wait till the freshly boiled soup reaches room temperature and then you can store it.
- Use double freezing bags
The first step while freezing is to make sure that you use food-grade freezing bags. Freezing bags can be sealed airtight and they do not stick to the surface of your food, making them an ideal storage method for thawing and handling frozen products.
Doubling the freezing bags will ensure air-tight conditions and prevent the bags from puncturing if exposed to sharp edges in the freezer.
- Don’t close the lid immediately!
When freshly boiled soup is poured into a container, you will notice the steam leaving the surface of the soup. Do not entrap this steam and cover it with the airtight lid, instead let it cool down for a short period of time before sealing the top.
The increased temperature will prevent microorganisms from entering your soup.
- Make small portions
Portion sizes are the key element to freezing. If you have prepared too much soup and don’t want to waste it, you can just make small portions of it before you freeze it. This will not only allow the soup to thaw quicker, but will also save the other portions from getting exposed.
In this brief guide we have addressed the question, “can you refreeze soup?” as well as other questions pertaining to the subject at hand like how to thaw frozen soup and what are the tips for storing items in the freezer.