freeze donuts

Can You Refrigerate and Freeze Donuts?

Donuts (or doughnuts) are undoubtedly among the most popular treats around the world. Donuts have infinite varieties of toppings and fillings—you’ll never get tired of trying a new one.

Despite their delicious taste, donuts are not the healthiest food on earth. So, if you are watching your calorie intake, you don’t want to eat a dozen donuts in one sitting or two. So, can you freeze donuts to keep them fresh for later use?

Perhaps, you’re thinking of making donuts in advance and freezing them for an upcoming party. Do donuts freeze well?

A short answer, yes! Freezing donuts is the easiest way to prolong their shelf life. In this article, we’ve compiled practical information around this topic. So, read on to learn more about freezing donuts!

The Best Way To Freeze Donuts

Donuts are best eaten when fresh and warm. However, these sweet treats only stay fresh for a couple of days.

Just like other foods, freezing is the ultimate way to preserve food items at home. 

But, do donuts freeze well? It depends.

Plain, unglazed, and unfilled donuts freeze the best. So, if you plan to make donuts in advance and freeze them, don’t add the fillings or toppings before freezing.

Not all fillings and toppings freeze well. Cream or custard fillings tend to separate and become lumpy after thawing.

Meanwhile, glazed donuts will melt and get sticky when reheated. But, you can fix them by dipping them in granulated sugar or re-glazing the donuts.

After all, these breakfast treats are too good to go to waste. So, whenever you have leftovers—whether they are homemade, store-bought (Costco, Hostess, etc.), or from your favorite donuts shop (like Krispy Kreme, Dunkin Donuts, Entenmann’s, etc.) consider freezing them for later serving.

Freezing donuts is relatively easy. But, you need to do it right. This way, you can minimize the undesired changes in texture and flavor.

Here is what you need to know on how to freeze donuts properly.

1. Make donuts according to your favorite recipes and cool down. Plain donuts without topping, filling, or glazing freeze the best. Skip this step if you’re freezing store-bought or leftover donuts.

2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

3. Lay the donuts evenly on a single layer and avoid stacking them.

4. Flash freeze for 3 to 4 hours or until the donuts are frozen solid.

5. Remove the frozen donuts, and they’re ready to pack.

6. Prepare a freezer bag or a freezer-safe container.

7. Line the bottom with a waxed or parchment paper, place the donuts in a single layer.

If you have more donuts to freeze, separate each layer of donuts with waxed or parchment paper to prevent them from sticking to each other.

If you only freeze one or two donuts, just pack them in a freezer bag and freeze

8. Suck as much air as possible from the package.

9. Seal tightly and label with the freezing date.

10. Transfer back the container into the freezer.

11. Check your freezer regularly and maintain the temperature at 0 °F (−18 °C) or lower.


How Do You Defrost and Warm Frozen Donuts?

When it’s time to serve, you have a few options to defrost and warm the frozen donuts.

1. Reheat in the oven at 400 °F (204 °C) for 5 to 10 minutes. The estimated time may vary depending on the donuts’ size and density.

2. Place frozen donuts on a plate and let them thaw at room temperature. Don’t use this method if the donuts contain custard or cream-based filling.

3. Refrigerator thawing. This is the safest option to thaw any foods. It may take longer than other methods, so do it in advance or overnight.

After thawing, to revive the donuts, simply put them in the microwave and reheat with 5 to 10-second intervals. Be careful not to overheat them, or you’ll end up with dry and tough donuts.

For plain donuts, add your favorite fillings, toppings, or glaze after they are warmed up.

How Long Can You Freeze Donuts?

Freezing donuts can significantly improve the shelf life from just a couple of days to almost 2 to 3 months. Donuts might stay edible after this time, but with expected changes in the texture or flavor.

This way, you can salvage any party leftovers or make a big batch to enjoy one at a time. Make sure to wrap them correctly and follow our tips above. Check our other article on storing donuts and how to tell if donuts go bad.


FAQs

Can you freeze uncooked donuts or donuts dough?

Absolutely yes. Shape the dough into donut rings and proof them. Next, place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and let them freeze for a few hours. Finally, pack them in a freezer bag or a freezer-safe container, and put back into the freezer. Thaw them at room temperature before frying.

Can you leave donuts out overnight?

It depends on the toppings and filling. For custard and cream-filled donuts, they should be refrigerated promptly, or they will spoil rapidly at room temperature. Glazed donuts can be kept at room temperature.

Are stale donuts bad for you?

Stale donuts aren’t really bad for you. They may taste bad but won’t harm you. To keep your donuts fresh, always keep them sealed or stored in airtight containers.

Summary

Freshly baked donuts are the champion. Sadly, these indulging treats only last for a couple of days. Luckily, freezing donuts will prolong their shelf life for 2 to 3 months.

Plain, unglazed, and unfilled donuts freeze very well. Wrap them properly and freeze for later use. But, leftover donuts can be frozen successfully with minimum damage on the texture and flavor.

Now that we’ve learned that freezing donuts is incredibly easy, no more reason to let leftover donuts go to waste!

frozen donuts

*image by maksym.koliehov.gmail.com/depositphotos

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