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Yes, you can freeze risotto for around 3 months and it will still have a decent quality. Cool it off, portion it out, place it in a freezer bag or airtight container and put it in the freezer. Do note that it can have some texture changes when it defrosts.
How to Freeze Risotto
Risotto is a delicious, creamy and hearty dish that originated in Italy. It is made by cooking a special short grain rice in a broth.
You can then ask various ingredients to it such as chicken or mushrooms. It can be served as a side dish for a main course.
Unfortunately, because I don't only last in the fridge for around 3 to 5 days. So, if you want to make a bunch of it or if you won't eat it super fast you may be looking to extend its shelf life.
Luckily, you can freeze risotto. Both homemade risotto and store-bought risotto freeze well. You can expect that there will be some textual changes due to the creaminess. The freezing process is super easy and similar to freezing spaghetti, freezing coleslaw and freezing pulled pork.
Before getting started, ensure that your risotto is totally and completely cool. Otherwise, condensation will build up in the package which can lead to freezer burn.
Next, go ahead and portion it out. Determine what size amounts you need when you defrost it.
Go ahead and scoop your individual portions into freezer bags or freezer safe containers. If using a container, try to make its size so that there's only one to two inches between the top of the risotto and the lid.
Zip your freezer bag shut once you have squeezed any excess air from the bag. If, instead you are using a container, go ahead and secure the lid on top.
Take a marker and write the date on the outside of your package and then toss it into the freezer.
Successful freezing tips
To ensure maximum quality follow these steps for the most successful freezing.
- As fresh as possible. Risotto only lasts for about 3 to 5 days in the fridge. So, it's essential that you freeze it as soon as possible to lock in the maximum quality, taste and texture.
- Portions count. Determining how much you'll need when you defrost it is essential. This way you can package in those portion sizes and only defrost the amount you need.
- Cool it off. Ensure that it is completely cooled before packaging it up. Warm packaged risotto can lead to condensation within the package which will eventually lead to freezer burn. Additionally, putting warm food in your freezer can raise the overall temperature of the freezer and decrease the quality of your other foods.
How to Defrost Risotto
The best way to defrost risotto is in the refrigerator. To do this, simply remove the package from the freezer and place it in the fridge overnight. Once it is defrosted, you can then reheat it however you prefer: oven, microwave or stovetop.
Though defrosting it in the fridge helps to maintain the best texture and quality, it does take a relatively long time. If you need to speed things up, you have a few choices.
In the Microwave
Defrosting and subsequently reheating in the microwave is the fastest method. But it does cause some degradation in texture and overall quality. To use this method:
Dump your risotto from into a microwave safe dish. Turn your microwave power to 50% or the defrost setting. Then microwave at 30 - 45 second intervals. To keep it from drying out, make sure you stir in between heating and you can also drizzle a little water on it.
On the stove
Defrosting and reheating immediately on the stove takes longer that the microwave, but it much shorter than doing it in the fridge. To use this method:
Dump your risotto into a pot. Turn the heat on medium low. Make sure to stir and work to break the risotto up as it starts to thaw. You can add a little water to the pot to help the defrosting and keep it from drying out.
Freezing Risotto FAQ
Does rice risotto freeze well?
Yes, rice risotto freezes well. Just make sure to add a little water in when you reheat it to help return some moisture to the dish.
How long can you keep risotto in the fridge?
Risotto lasts for 3 - 5 days in the fridge assuming it is packed well in an airtight container.
Is it OK to freeze mushroom risotto?
Yes, it is OK to freeze mushroom risotto just like any other kind of risotto. Make sure to package it in an airtight container.
Can you freeze chicken risotto?
Yes, you can freeze chicken risotto. Just make sure to do so in a timely manner since chicken doesn't last, but a few days in the fridge.
Can you refreeze risotto?
No, you should not refreeze risotto it can affect both the safety and overall quality too much due to the multiple temperature changes.
How to Freeze Risotto
- airtight container
- marker or pen
- freezer bags
- Completely cool the risotto before getting started.
- Portion out the risotto into the amounts you will want to use when defrosted.
- Scoop each portion into its own freezer bag or freezer safe container
- Zip the bag shut once you have pressed any air out of it. If using a container, press the lid on top of it.
- Grab a marker and write the date on the bag or container.
- Stick your package into the freezer.