Jam is a staple in homes because it’s excellent for sweetening many things. Plus, it lasts a long time in the refrigerator. But what about freezing jam—can that extend its shelf life?
Yes, you can freeze jam to extend its shelf life. Store it in a freezer-safe container, such as a glass or plastic jar. Freeze the jam for up to 12 months before the taste and texture begin to change. However, it’s best to freeze jam for no more than six months to ensure you get the best quality.
The rest of this article will discuss freezing jams in more detail. So, be sure to keep reading if you want to know how you can extend your jam’s shelf life as much as possible.
For How Long Can You Freeze Jam?
You can freeze jam for up to a year. However, it’s best to freeze it for no more than six months for the best results. It can get watery if you leave it in the freezer for more than six months, making it less enjoyable to eat. Additionally, jam loses its flavor after a few months in the freezer.
It’s perfectly safe to keep your jam in the freezer for 12 months or more, but it won’t taste as good, so avoid that whenever possible.
Refrigerating Is Also a Good Way To Store Jam for Long Periods
You can store opened jam in the refrigerator for up to six months before it starts to affect its flavor. But to ensure you consume your refrigerated jam at its best, you should consume it within one month.
However, consuming it after a month is entirely safe; if you don’t mind the jam losing some of its quality, it’s perfectly fine to refrigerate it for longer!
Is It Safe To Freeze Jam?
It’s safe to freeze jam. Freezing jam ensures that bacteria doesn’t grow on it and helps it last longer. You should ensure that you don’t fill the container to the very top because the jam will expand when it’s frozen. An overfilled glass container may break, which can be unsafe.
Since freezing jam prevents bacteria growth, it’s a highly safe and efficient way to keep it for a long time. If you want to freeze your jam as safely as possible, here are a few helpful tips:
- Ensure your freezer is at a temperature of 0°F (-18°C).
- Wait until your jam is thoroughly cooled before freezing it.
- Don’t fill the container to the top because frozen jam will expand.
- Ensure your container can withstand the freezing temperatures. Not all glass containers are freezer-friendly.
How To Freeze Jam
Here’s how you can freeze your jam:
- Wait until it’s cool (if it’s freshly cooked).
- Put it into a freezer-friendly container (glass or plastic). Leave some space for the jam to expand.
- Put it in the freezer.
- Leave for up to 12 months (six ideally).
If you’re freezing store-bought jam, you should remove it from the original jar and transfer it into an appropriate container. Some store-bought jam jars may not be freezer-friendly.
Additionally, most store-bought jam jars are packed to the top; this may cause the jar to break since the jam will expand in the freezer.
How To Defrost Frozen Jam
Here’s how you can defrost frozen jam:
- Remove it from the freezer.
- Place it in the fridge.
- Leave it to defrost overnight.
- Enjoy your jam the following day.
Defrosting jam in the fridge is the safest and most convenient way to thaw it. It would be best if you never defrosted jam at room temperature. That’s because there’s a higher chance of contamination.
If you need to thaw your jam quickly and don’t want to wait hours while it defrosts in the fridge, you can submerge the container with frozen jam in hot water. As long as you keep the water consistently hot, it can defrost within 30 minutes.
Frozen Jam Is Edible Despite the Change in Texture and Flavor
If your jam has been in the freezer for a long time, you may notice that it’s more watery than it was before. You may also notice that it tastes different. Although it’s not ideal, this is very normal after the jam has been frozen for a long time.
Although there will be differences, it’s perfectly safe to eat it; you don’t have to worry about getting ill.
One of the main reasons it’s difficult to get sick from the jam is that it has high sugar content. High sugar content prevents bacterial growth, so it’s unlikely to spoil. When you refrigerate opened jam, it can last for months without going bad.
So, as you can imagine, freezing it keeps it from spoiling for even longer!
What’s the Best Way To Store Jam?
The best way to store jam is to put it in the refrigerator, particularly if it’s opened and you plan to finish it in the next few months. You can keep it in a cool, dry place if it’s unopened. If you want to keep it for more than a few months, the best way to store it is by freezing it.
The best way to store jam depends on how and when you want to use it. In most cases, the refrigerator is the most appropriate way to store it because it keeps the jam good for a few months.
Unopened jam doesn’t need to be refrigerated; it can last for 1–2 years in a cool, dry place if it has high sugar content. However, it’s best to store the sugar-free or low-sugar jam in the fridge or freezer because it doesn’t last as long.
Can You Refreeze Jam?
You can refreeze your jam, but the taste and texture will be negatively affected. However, if your jam has reached a temperature of 40°F (4°C) or more after being defrosted, you shouldn’t refreeze it due to the possibility of bacterial growth.
That’s because bacteria can multiply in temperatures over 40°F (4°C), so you risk bacterial contamination if you refreeze it after being in these conditions.
You should only refreeze jam if you have kept it in the fridge since defrosting it. That way, you can ensure that it hasn’t reached 40°F (4°C).
The Quality of Your Jam Will Suffer if You Refreeze It
As mentioned above, it’s safe to refreeze the jam once it hasn’t gone above 40°F (4°C). However, it won’t taste as good, so you may be disappointed when you defrost it the second time.
If you’re happy to consume jam after its texture and taste have changed, then it shouldn’t be a problem to refreeze. However, if you’re picky about taste and don’t want to lose any flavor, I wouldn’t recommend refreezing your jam.
Can You Freeze Store-Bought Jam?
Like homemade jam, you can also freeze store-bought jam. It’s usually only necessary to freeze store-bought jam after it has been open. Generally, store-bought jam can last 1–2 years when unopened—and it can last opened in the fridge for up to 12 months.
Freezing store-bought jam is pretty much the same as storing homemade jam. The main difference is that you must wait for the homemade jam to cool down before freezing it. Since store-bought jam isn’t warm, you don’t have to worry about this step.
You can freeze jam for up to a year, but it’s best to defrost it within six months to ensure the best quality. Some important things to take away from this article are:
- Freezing jam for longer than a few months will affect the taste and texture.
- You can freeze homemade and store-bought jam.
- You only need to refrigerate or freeze jam once you’ve opened it; unopened jam can last up to two years in a pantry!
- Only refreeze jam if it has remained below 40°F (4°C).