What desserts should you not freeze?

Answered by Robert Dupre

When it comes to freezing desserts, it’s important to consider the water content of the sweet treat. Desserts with high water content tend to develop ice crystals when frozen, which can affect their texture and make them less enjoyable when thawed. Here are some desserts that are not ideal for freezing:

1. Meringues: Meringues are delicate and airy desserts made primarily from whipped egg whites and sugar. Freezing meringues causes the moisture in them to freeze and form ice crystals, resulting in a loss of their light and crisp texture. It’s best to enjoy meringues fresh.

2. Custards: Custards, such as crème brûlée or flan, contain eggs and milk or cream. Freezing custards can lead to a grainy texture and separation of the ingredients. The texture may become watery or lumpy upon thawing, altering the smooth and creamy consistency that is characteristic of custard desserts.

3. Puddings: Similar to custards, puddings made with milk or cream can be negatively affected by freezing. The ingredients may separate, leading to a watery texture and a loss of the desired creamy and velvety consistency. It’s best to enjoy puddings fresh or refrigerated.

4. Whipped Cream: Whipped cream is a delightful topping for many desserts, but it does not freeze well. When frozen, whipped cream can become grainy and lose its airy texture. It’s preferable to whip fresh cream when needed or use whipped cream substitutes that are specifically designed for freezing.

5. Gelatin-based Sweets: Desserts like gelatin molds or fruit jellies that rely on gelatin as a setting agent may not freeze successfully. Gelatin tends to become rubbery and lose its smooth and wobbly texture when frozen. These types of desserts are best enjoyed fresh or refrigerated.

It’s worth noting that while these desserts may not freeze well, there are often alternative ways to preserve them. For example, custards and puddings can be stored in the refrigerator for a few days, and whipped cream can be made shortly before serving. By understanding the characteristics of different desserts, we can ensure that we enjoy them at their best.