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Yes, you absolutely can freeze cupcakes. In fact, you can freeze frosted or unfrosted cupcakes for up to 3 months in the freezer without sacrificing any quality. You can keep them even longer in the freezer without them going bad, but they may decrease in quality.
How to Freeze Cupcakes
Whether you are prepping ahead for a big holiday party or celebration or perhaps you just can't finish a batch of cupcakes quick enough, learning how to freeze your cupcakes will help make sure you can enjoy every last one without them going bad.
Freezing unfrosted cupcakes
You can freeze your unfrosted cupcakes and four simple steps. This should only take you a couple of minutes to get all your cupcakes frozen.
Start out by making sure that your cupcakes are fully cooled. Obviously if you baked them a few days ago or purchase them at the store this isn't an issue.
However, if you just freshly baked your cupcakes you want to ensure that they are no longer hot or warm before moving to the next steps. If they have not called properly they will get condensation as they begin to freeze and this will cause your cupcakes to become soggy.
Once your cupcakes are completely cooled, you will need to individually wrap them. This allows them to stay as fresh as possible and avoid freezer burn while being frozen.
To wrap them you can simply use plastic wrap. Tear off a piece of plastic wrap large enough to fully wrap each cupcake.
Place the plastic wrap on your countertop. Then, place your cupcake in the middle of your plastic wrap.
Finally, wrap the plastic wrap around your cupcake so that the cupcake is fully insecurely encased in plastic wrap.
Repeat this process for each cupcake until you have wrapped every single cupcake individually in plastic wrap.
Next, you can place all of your cupcakes into a freezer safe container. You can use either a glass or plastic container or you can simply place them in a freezer Ziploc bag.
Go ahead and label your freezer bag or freezer safe container with the date so that you know when you have frozen your cupcakes.
Then, place in the freezer on a flat surface so that they freeze without getting smashed.
Freezing frosted cupcakes
Freezing frosted cupcakes is almost just as easy as freezing unfrosted cupcakes. However, you do need to take one additional step to ensure that the frosting stays intact. Freezing cream cheese frosting and freezing buttercream frosting works particularly well.
To get started, you will want to first flash freeze your cupcakes. This way the frosting will freeze in place and won't get smashed at later steps.
To do this, simply take your cupcakes and put them on a cookie sheet or other tray or plate that is freezer safe. You do want to be sure that the cupcakes are not touching. And then, place them in the freezer for an hour or two.
After a few hours, check on the cupcakes and if the icing is pretty well frozen then you are ready to move on to the next step.
Next, you need to individually wrap each cupcake and plastic wrap to ensure that they do not get freezer burn and have the maximum freshness when frozen.
To do this, tear off a piece of plastic wrap that is large enough to fully encase each cupcake. Then, place the plastic wrap flat on the counter.
Take your cupcake and place it in the center of the plastic wrap. Then, wrap the plastic wrap around your cupcake securely.
Repeat wrapping each cupcake with plastic wrap until you have wrapped every cupcake.
Now, you need to place your cupcakes into a single freezer safe container. You can use either freezer bags or a plastic or glass freezer safe container.
After your cupcakes are in their freezer safe container, you need to label the container with the date. This way you will know how long your cupcakes have been in the freezer.
Finally, take your container full of cupcakes and pop them into your freezer. You should ensure that they are on a flat and even surface so that they freeze without getting smushed.
How to Defrost Frozen Cupcakes
The best way to defrost cupcakes so they maintain quality and are safe to eat is by using the refrigerator. To do this, simply remove them from the freezer and place them into the fridge overnight.
For cupcakes that are large and/or have a lot of frosting on them, a full 8 hours may not be sufficient for thawing. For example, the cupcakes in the photos here took around 12 hours to be fully defrosted.
Can you freeze cupcakes with icing on them?
Yes, you absolutely can freeze cupcakes with icing on them. You do need to take one extra step when freezing them and that is to flash freeze them before wrapping them in plastic wrap so that the frosting does not get smashed.
Do frozen cupcakes taste the same?
Yes, cupcakes freeze very well and frozen cupcakes taste pretty much the same once they have been defrosted.
Does freezing cupcakes dry them out?
No, freezing cupcakes does not dry them out. They tend to keep their quality very well when Frozen.
How long do cupcakes stay fresh in the fridge?
Cupcakes can usually stay fresh for 5 or so days in the fridge or at room temperature before they need to be consumed, thrown out or frozen.
How long can you freeze cupcakes?
For best quality, freeze your cupcakes for around 3 months or less. However, they won't go bad if you keep them in the freezer longer they can just have a decrease in quality.
How to Freeze Cupcakes (frosted or unfrosted)
- airtight container
- plastic wrap
- marker or pen
- freezer bags
- Cupcakes frosted or unfrosted
- If you baked your own cupcakes, be sure to let them cool thoroughly before getting started.
- If you cupcakes are frosted, you must flash freeze them. Do this by sitting them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and placing them in the freezer for a few hours. You want them to stay in until the frosting is stiff enough that it won't smudge when wrapped.
- Next, tear off a sheet of plastic wrap large enough to completely cover the cupcake.
- Sit the cupcake in the center of the plastic wrap and secure it around the cupcake.
- Place the wrapped cupcake into a freezer bag or airtight container.
- Zip the freezer bag shut, but make sure to press any excess air out before closing it all the way. Or, if you used a container, place the lid on it.
- Use a market and write the date on the bag or container and pop it into the freezer.