Freezing Pies: Cooked Or Uncooked? (What to Know)
How much do you enjoy the sinful taste of a delicious pie? My guess is so much so that you wouldn’t want to waste even a single bite of it! Well, the best way to preserve a pie is by freezing it.
In this article, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about freezing pies, including:
- Whether you should be freezing pies cooked or uncooked
- How to freeze pies (both cooked and uncooked)
- Freezing pie fillings
- How to freeze one piece of pie
- The shelf life of different types of pies when frozen
- Important things to keep in mind when freezing pies
Can You Freeze Pies?
If you were previously unaware of this, let me tell you, it is quite possible to freeze pies. However, there is a proper way to do so. Moreover, it is also essential to know that not every kind of pie can be preserved by freezing.
While most kinds of pie can be successfully frozen, there are a few that contain ingredients that do not freeze well and shouldn’t be put in the freezer. These include:
- Meringue pies
- Custard pies
- any kind of cream pie
In addition, any pies that have cornstarch filling or gelatin in them should not be frozen. These pies, when thawed, end up a watery and unappetizing mess.
Note: Pies with gelatin can be frozen if it’s the type of pie that is intended to be served frozen.
Freezing Pies: Cooked Or Uncooked?
The most famous question about freezing pies is whether one should freeze them before baking or after?
Most professional chefs and baking experts suggest that a pie should be frozen before being baked. This not only keeps it fresh but also preserves the highest quality of texture and taste.
However, if you plan to keep a pie in the freezer for a long time, then it is suggested that you bake it first. The reason for this is that baking a pie and then freezing it will allow it to last longer in the freezer (approximately 2 months longer).
Best Way of Freezing Baked and Unbaked Pies
The following are the best methods for freezing a cooked pie and an uncooked pie:
Freezing Method For Uncooked Pies
- The very first step is to assemble the pie on the baking tray. Do it just the way you’d do it before baking.
- Place the pie as it is in the freezer and don’t cover it with anything.
- Let it sit in the freezer for 2-3 hours or until it has frozen solid.
- After that, take the pie out and cover it with 2-3 layers of plastic wrap. Make sure you cover it fully. I personally would add another layer of protection by placing the wrapped pie inside a large freezer bag.
- Once packaged, place the pie in the freezer for storage.
- Keep the uncooked pie in the freezer for a maximum of 3 months before taking it out and baking it.
- Always label your pies with the date you put them into the freezer.
Freezing Method For Cooked Pies
- Follow your preferred pie baking recipe and let your pie cook completely.
- Once baked, allow the pie to cool completely. Afterward, place the pie in an airtight freezer bag, making sure to push the air out of the bag before sealing it tightly. As an added layer of protection, you can choose to wrap the pie in plastic wrap before putting it in the freezer bag.
- After packing it, label it with the date and type of pie.
- Now you can place it in your freezer to preserve it.
- Make sure you consume it within 4 months.
Bonus: Freezing Just The Pie Filling
One way to ensure that you have the freshest pie while still eliminating the majority of your future effort is the freeze just the pie filling. The pie filling can then be defrosted and added to a fresh crust. Bake it like normal, and you’ll have a delicious fresh pie to serve.
Here’s how to freeze only the pie filling:
- Once your pie filling is made, add half a tablespoon of arrowroot starch in it (you can also use regular flour). This will help preserve its texture.
- The next step is to pour your filling into a freezer-safe container and cover it tightly to make sure that air cannot reach it.
- Now you can label it and keep it in the freezer.
- The suggested freezer time for a pie filling is 4 months.
When you’re ready to use your filling, simply place the container in the fridge overnight to thaw. By the next day, your pie filling will be ready to go.
How Long Can Frozen Pies Last in The Freezer
While an unbaked pie will last approximately 3 months in the freezer, a pie that was baked before being frozen will last 2 or 3 months longer. Even that, however, depends on the type of pie.
The table below shows the shelf life of different kinds of pre-baked pies stored in the freezer:
|Type Of Pie||Shelf Life In Fridge||Shelf Life In Freezer (Pre-baked)|
|Fresh Fruit Pies||2-3 days||6-7 months|
|Custard Pies||2-3 days||(Not Recommended)|
|Pumpkin Pies||2-4 days||6-7 months|
|Cream Pies||2-3 days||6 months|
|Pie Crust Mix||6-8 weeks||(Not recommended)|
|Pecan Pies||2-4 days||6-7 months|
You can see that while most pies will only keep for a few days in the refrigerator, a cooked pie will generally last up to six months or so in the freezer. In truth, they will last even longer than that, but after six months, the pie will begin to noticeably degrade in terms of taste and texture.
Things To Keep In Mind When Freezing Pies
While freezing pies is pretty straightforward, in practice, there are a few things to keep in mind when freezing and thawing a pie.
- Don’t forget to add nuts and small berries in your pie. They not only add to the taste, but also help your pie stay firm and not get liquidy when frozen.
- Never thaw your pie, as it can result in a soggy texture. The best way to eat a previously baked frozen pie is by baking them again in the oven until warm. An unbaked pie can be taken directly from the freezer, put in the oven, and baked as normal. In this case, you will need to add some additional time to account for the pie being frozen.
- Whether previously baked or not, brush your frozen pie with some egg wash or butter just before baking it.
Can You Freeze a Single Piece of Pie?
If you have just a single piece of pie (or even two or three), you can freeze it by wrapping the slice in a couple of layers of plastic wrap and then placing it in a sealable freezer bag. When ready to eat, unwrap the slice and put it in the oven (or toaster oven) to thaw and warm up.
How Do I Defrost A Frozen Pie?
The best way to defrost a pie is to place the frozen pie directly into the oven until it defrosts and warms up. Alternatively, you can also place the frozen pie into the fridge for several hours so that it defrosts slowly.
Always avoid thawing a pie at room temps. Thawing a pie this way will cause the pie to get watery and the crust to get soggy.
Freezing Pies – Conclusion
Freeing both cooked and uncooked pies is a great way to save them to enjoy at a later time. Freeze unbaked pies and use them within 2 months for the best taste. Freeze baked pies if you need a pie to last up to 6 months in the freezer.