Baked beans are delicious; we can’t deny that. It works best as a side dish to a meal consisting of meat or even with vegetables. Baked beans are very popular and can be eaten cold, lukewarm or hot. With that said, there are times when you cook delicious beans for your family and there are some leftovers. It’s during these moments that you wonder, can baked beans be frozen?
The answer is simply yes. The baked beans can be frozen and no matter where you obtained them, be it canned beans or homemade, the method is still the same. However, you have to manage the freezing process well to prevent bacterial growth.
Can You Freeze Canned Baked Beans
Before we begin, here are a few things we should observe before freezing the beans.
Only Freeze Cooked Beans
This should be obvious, always make sure you freeze cooked beans. By this, we mean only beans from cans or homemade beans that qualify to be frozen.
Freezing uncooked beans is not a good idea as they will lose their composition and taste once it’s thawed back. This is different from the cooked beans that will easily retain their composition.
Salt Isn’t A Bad Idea
Salt is a natural preservative. With this is in mind, you can add a dash of salt to your beans to help preserve them for longer. Remember, just a little bit, too much, and you’ll ruin the taste.
Step By Step Method For Storing Baked Beans
There isn’t that much really as far as freezing baked beans are concerned. You freeze homemade as well as canned baked beans the same way. With that said, let’s look at the step by step process on how to freeze baked beans:
Step 1: Let The Baked Beans Cool Down
The first step would be to let the hot beans cool down first. The best temperature for freezing is room temperature.
The reasoning behind this is to spare the storage container from damage. Placing the baked beans in the freezer while hot might cause the container to expand or break. It’s the same concept as placing cold water in hot glass. Please don’t try that
Step 2: Place Them Into An Airtight Container
The next step is to place the beans inside any plastic containers you can find. There are freezer-safe containers that you can use that are BPA free and dishwasher or microwave safe.
There is a good reason why we recommend such containers because they can handle rapid changes in temperature and are made to last. In addition to that, they can protect the food better from freezer burns. This is important, especially when storing meat with beans.
Avoid using plastic bags or freezer bags as they might rip and expose the beans to freezing temperatures. Exposure to such temperatures would definitely affect the composition as well as the taste of the beans. When filling the containers, don’t fill them to the brim. This is because the beans and broth sometimes expand once frozen.
As a result, the top might pop off or the container might get damaged. Tight lids are also important because they protect the beans in the container from absorbing odors from other foods
Step 3: Label The Container
The last step would be to label the container. If you have a lot in your freezer, then you should label your beans.
This will help you keep track of them and prevent them from getting spoiled. We could argue that you should do that with every food you put in your freezer.
Fun fact, you can have the baked beans sit in your freezer for up to six months. In all honesty, we wouldn’t advise you to keep the beans in there for that long.
How To Reuse The Frozen Baked Beans
If you wish to reuse the frozen beans, you need to thaw them out. You can use a refrigerator or the defrost setting in your microwave. Once they are thawed, the reheating process is to put them into a pot or slow cooker and cook them. It’s advised to use the lowest cooking temperature possible and add a bit of water when it is starting to dry out
There are people that get worried that the beans might burst open during the cooking process. This is a valid concern, to avoid this use a small amount of salt to stop them from bursting open. Feel free to use them as part of breakfast or with whatever recipe you have in mind.
It’s not advised to refreeze the baked beans once they are thawed. It might affect the taste of the food.
Freezing food is a great idea especially if you’re a busy person who doesn’t have time to cook food at different parts of the day. It can definitely help you save some time and energy.