What To Keep In Mind When Freezing Liquid Coffee Creamer

Got too much coffee creamer and don't know what to do with it? Perhaps you bought a few extra containers of peppermint mocha and pumpkin spice creamer over the holiday season to enjoy the seasonal flavors in your summer brews. Or maybe you found your favorite brand on sale and, in a rush of practicality, bought it in bulk. Or it could be you just noticed that your creamer bottle is mostly full, but about to expire. The way out of all these creamer conundrums is to freeze your coffee creamer until you're ready to use it.

We should point out at the outset that freezing won't extend the shelf life of creamer indefinitely (winter to summer, or six months would be about the limit) and less if it's close to expiring. However, just like with other unlikely freezer candidates like Halloween candy and leftover wine, creamer can indeed be frozen and returned to usable consistency, in large or smaller, more convenient quantities. 

A few caveats — expect different results when freezing dairy creamer compared to its non-dairy counterparts, as the latter retains its consistency better. It's also essential to use freezer-safe packaging to store frozen coffee creamer and, when in doubt, do a sight, smell, and taste test. If your defrosted coffee creamer doesn't pass one of them, throw it out.

How to freeze liquid coffee creamer

When freezing coffee creamer, the first thing to do is put it in a suitable container. Frozen liquids expand, so avoid glass bottles or the brittle plastic containers that creamer usually comes in, as they might crack in the freezer. Instead, use freezer-safe bags — gallon bags if you are freezing in bulk, or smaller pint-sized bags you can thaw one at a time. Plan at the freezing stage how you intend to use it because you should not freeze creamer again once defrosted. If you end up defrosting too much, you can use the excess to make smoothies, french toast, or pancakes, but remember the idea was to make things convenient, not dream up ways to use it up in a hurry. 

Alternatively, you can freeze single servings by breaking out a clean ice-cube tray and filling the cells with creamer. Once frozen, transfer your coffee creamer cubes into a freezer-safe bag, so you can use them only as needed. As ever, the bags should be airtight to avoid stray freezer smells entering your coffee through the creamer. And irrespective of how much you freeze, label the bags with the date and make sure six months is your hard stop, though routinely give it a sniff to ensure freshness. 

Defrosting frozen coffee creamer

The best way to revive bags of frozen coffee creamer is to place them in the fridge overnight to defrost. For frozen creamer cubes, take out as many as are required and refrigerate them overnight in a measuring cup or other pourable container. The cubes give you the added flexibility of being able to put them directly into a glass of cold brew and enjoy the slowly evolving flavor of your coffee as they melt. 

Non-dairy creamer actually works best when it comes to freezing and thawing, especially if you plan on putting those cubes directly into your coffee. The consistency of dairy creamer can sometimes be affected by freezing, resulting in a lumpy white mixture when defrosted. When reviving dairy creamer, it's best to let it rest overnight in the fridge. Give it a good stir the following day to break up any lumps, and it should be good to use.

No matter the type, once thawed, make sure to use up the coffee creamer within 48 hours. If it was close to expiry when you froze it, you should use it immediately after thawing.