Did you buy one too many cans of baked beans and are now wondering what to do with them? Or are you not sure about what to do with the half-opened can of baked beans? Can you freeze baked beans?
The good news is you can. And not only that, it is insanely easy to freeze them!
But before you run to the supermarket and buy that big carton of baked beans on sale, let’s first find out what exactly you will need to do to freeze them right.
First things first, let’s establish the basic facts.
Can You Freeze Baked Beans Without Compromising Their Quality?
Yes, you can. If done right baked beans won’t lose any of their taste after being frozen. But it is not always as simple as popping that tin can in the freezer and then taking it out later. You will need to know a couple of things first.
Store-bought baked beans usually have a longer shelf life on their own. And if they are unopened, you probably do not need to freeze them at all.
If, however, you decided to make lots of baked beans from scratch, or have half a can of leftover baked beans, you need to either consume them soon or think about freezing them. Baked beans along with their sauce, hold great in the freezer without compromising on their taste.
How To Freeze Baked Beans
There are many ways you can store and freeze baked beans. Some of them are as follows:
In a plastic/glass container:
- If using these containers, make sure that they are freezer friendly and are made of BPA free plastic.
- Let your beans cool down to room temperature and then go ahead and place them in these containers. Never fill your containers to their brim.
- Store theme in the freezer and you’re done!
In a freezer-friendly plastic bag:
- The method essentially remains the same in this one too, but you need to follow a few extra steps to be careful.
- Once your room temperature beans have been transferred to the bag, make sure you lay them flat in the freezer.
- Do not overlap any other items on this bag. If you do, make sure your beans are frozen solid before you place something on them.
- Use high-quality freezer bags. I recommend these.
While they are very easy to freeze, remember to never put them in the freezer while they are still warm. A glass container with hot beans in the freezer will break due to the temperature pressure. Additionally, if you place warm beans in an airtight container, the heat will condense into water vapor which will then freeze and ruin your beans.
If you wish to freeze your leftover canned beans, simply follow the same steps that you would for home-baked beans,
How Long Can Baked Beans Last In The Freezer?
If you’re using canned beans, it is best to store them in the fridge immediately. Canned beans that have been opened can stay in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. And if stored in an airtight container in the freezer, you can extend their shelf life to 6 months!
If you have a batch of home-baked beans, you can store them in an airtight container for up to two months. Make sure you store them at a constant temperature of 0 degrees Fahrenheit
Can You Freeze Baked Beans Twice?
Most people will advise you against this particular method.
You can keep refreezing them, to be clear. But each time you thaw it and then refreeze it, you’re compromising on the taste, quality, and texture of your baked beans.
What you can do instead is if you have a large batch of baked beans, store them in several batches instead of one. This way you can just thaw the right amount of beans you require, letting the others still sit in the freezer.
So can you freeze baked beans after thawing them? Yes. But should you? No.
Defrosting Frozen Baked Beans
This is the more difficult part when it comes to freezing baked beans. Most people, including me, would recommend thawing it overnight in the refrigerator. This will be your safest bet and yield you the best quality.
Alternatively, you can also place your frozen container in a bowl full of water to bring up its temperature.
You may also like: How Long Do Beans Last in the Fridge
If you’re in a hurry, however, you do have two other options to thaw your baked beans. Be warned though, don’t use them unless you really really need a quick fix.
- You can take out the lid and place your container in the microwave at 30-second intervals. Be very careful to use your lowest temperature setting.
- You can also put your frozen beans in a saucepan along with some water. Let them cook slowly on very low heat until they are fully thawed.
With both these options, you’re more likely to end up with unevenly warmed baked beans. In the saucepan, be sure to stir them occasionally. And in the microwave, keep an eye to not burn the edges!
Reheating Your Baked Beans
Once you have successfully thawed your baked beans, half your work is already done.
The best way you could reheat your beans is by heating them in the oven. However, you can also use the microwave or stovetop to heat your baked beans.
In the oven:
- Place your thawed beans in an oven-safe dish and cover it with a foil.
- Heat your oven to 300-350 degrees Fahrenheit and cook them for 4-5 minutes.
- If you think that your beans have gone dry, or might risk burning, further lower the temperature of the oven.
- Your baked beans should be ready to use.
In the microwave:
- If you need to reheat a small portion of your beans, go ahead and heat them in a microwave-safe dish.
- Add some water on top and heat them at low temperature for 6-8 minutes.
- Take 1-minute intervals, and stir regularly.
Using the stovetop:
- Using a pan or a skillet, put your thawed beans in it along with some water.
- Keep stirring without fail, and keep the heat at medium-high.
- You can also directly place your frozen beans in the pan and cook them for 20-30 minutes.
Tips To Freezing and Reusing Your Baked Beans:
- If you’re baking your beans to freeze them, consider undercooking them so that they don’t become too mushy when you heat them again.
- Before you reheat your baked beans, stir them gently to avoid uneven heating and the formation of lumps.
- Always consider labeling your frozen baked bean containers. You can buy freezer labels online or just stick a simple note. This way you can keep track of its expiry.
- To freeze your beans well, make them extra saucy. This will keep them from getting dry and stale.
- When freezing canned beans, add some water along with your beans in the container. You can throw away the water once you thaw it, or use it in your dish.
Can you freeze unopened cans of baked beans?
You can. But you don’t have to. Unopened cans of baked beans have a shelf life of 3-5 years on their own. If you haven’t opened them yet there is no need to freeze them at all.
Can you freeze uncooked beans?
Never freeze uncooked beans at any cost. Freezing them when they are raw will affect their quality and they will not turn out as good when thawed. Instead store them in a cool, dry place.
Is it safe to have cold baked beans?
There are no health hazards to having cold baked beans. Just make sure they are fully cooked and are not raw.
Can you freeze baked beans in a can?
Baked Beans frozen inside cans are very difficult to handle once frozen. Cans can get stuck in the freezer, can break open, and affect the quality of your beans over time. Always freeze your beans in airtight containers.
Now that you know how to freeze baked beans, you should never have to throw out your leftover baked beans from last night. Baked Beans even make a fabulous meal and offer versatility in just about all courses. Make sure you store them right, and you will hopefully never have to order takeout dinner on nights you don’t have anything in the house!
Eva M. Smith is the owner of this website. She is a 4 year old mother of two kids and a professional chef. Eva loves to cook for her family, but being a working mom has a lot of challenges. From squeezing in time to do the groceries to make three meals for the day. Eva knows how challenging cooking can be without a kitchen game plan.
That’s why she perfected techniques of preserving staple ingredients and several foods so that you have something pre-cooked or pre-baked to use for an array of meals. And they do not come short in flavor! And she does not want to sacrifice flavor with convenience. That’s why she is the best person to ask.