Orange juice is one of those staples at a five-star breakfast that starts your day off right. But every time you seem to buy a carton, it goes bad before you can finish it all. Fortunately, you can actually freeze orange juice to significantly improve its shelf life.
Having said that, you might find that the taste and texture change after it’s frozen and defrosted. You can freeze orange juice both with pulp and without, but the latter option fares best in the freezing process.
You can freeze orange juice in a number of different containers, including its original carton. Let’s take a look at how you freeze and defrost orange juice as well as factors to consider before doing so.
How To Freeze Orange Juice
Freezing orange juice might just be the easiest process ever. If you properly freeze your orange juice you can expect to see the shelf life increase to 3 to 12 months. You can freeze both store-bought orange juice and freshly squeezed orange juice.
People have mixed opinions about whether you should freeze a full carton of orange juice or not. Some people swear that they’ve frozen full cartons of orange juice without any issues while others will say that their juice exploded all over them.
Whether you choose to freeze your orange juice in a full carton or not is up to you. Cardboard is a sturdy material but it has the potential to leave you with orange juice all over the floor. So, we recommend that you have a glass of juice before you freeze the rest - just in case.
To freeze orange juice, simply put the juice in the freezer. It’s as simple as that! You can freeze it in any container you want, such as mason jars, plastic containers, or ice cube trays. If your juice is homemade it will have a shelf life of 3 to 4 months in the freezer.
However, if you have bought your juice from the store you might find that it lasts much longer than this. Store-bought orange juice can last up to 8 to 12 months in the freezer. If you defrost it after the timeframe it might go bad as soon as it thaws.
How To Defrost Orange Juice
To defrost your orange juice, take the container out of the fridge and place it in the refrigerator. It’s best to leave it for several hours or overnight before drinking to ensure that it’s completely defrosted. You don’t want to defrost orange juice at room temperature as it will spoil much quicker and you might not get a chance to drink it.
Take a look at the juice before you drink it. If the juice has separated you should give it a good stir to promote the components mixing back together. The sugars and pulp are likely to separate, but you can often mix them together so that you won’t notice it as much when you’re drinking.
You can also move the juice to a larger container if you’d prefer to shake it all together rather than stirring it. Many people have found that shaking is more effective than stirring, but it’s whether you have a big enough container or not.
Once your juice is defrosted, make sure that you give it a good sniff before drinking. This will let you know if the juice has gone bad in the freezer without having to taste bad juice. However, if the juice doesn’t have a bad smell you might still find that it has a bad taste. If this is the case, throw all of the juice out straight away.
Alternatively, you could turn your orange juice into ice pops with some molds and wooden sticks. This would avoid the change of consistency and taste and make for excellent summertime snacks.
Factors to Consider Before Freezing Orange Juice
If you’re thinking of freezing your orange juice, there are a few considerations that you should take before doing so. For starters, the consistency and taste might change after you’ve frozen and defrosted your juice. Natural sugars found in juice might separate and cause the juice to taste differently from how you remember.
You can stir or shake your juice to counteract this problem, but it might not taste exactly as it did before you froze the juice. The second factor to consider is the portions. If you’re freezing an entire carton of orange juice, remember that it will need to be consumed within a couple of days (at most) after you’ve defrosted it.
This might lead to juice getting wasted anyway if you don’t want to drink an entire carton of juice within two days. So, we might suggest that you freeze your orange juice in portions rather than all together.
Take a few containers or jars and fill them with as much orange juice as you’d have in one sitting. Freeze them separately. Now when you want to defrost them you can do so with only one container. This allows you to defrost enough juice that you can drink in one sitting without wasting the rest.
To sum up, yes you can freeze orange juice. This is an excellent way to ensure that none of your juice gets wasted. You can freeze orange juice in almost any container, such as its original carton, mason jars, and ice cube trays. Frozen orange juice remains in the freezer from anywhere from 3 to 12 months depending on whether it’s store-bought or not.
Defrosting orange juice is best done in the refrigerator and left overnight. Always make sure to test that the orange juice is still good before giving it to your entire family. You can also thaw orange juice in the microwave or at room temperature but you run the risk of your juice going bad before you can drink it.
Freezing and defrosting orange juice might cause changes in the texture and taste, but it is by no means wasted. Simply mix the juice together again and enjoy!