Home Knowledge Can You Freeze Baked Beans?

Can You Freeze Baked Beans? [Storage Guide]

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Can you freeze baked beans

Baked beans are a simple, healthy meal¹ that can be prepared in a few minutes. Served next to bacon and eggs, topped on a baked potato or eaten on their own, they’re a versatile meal.

If you like to cook up a large batch of baked beans, it’s not uncommon to have leftovers. But, can you freeze baked beans? Will the defrosted version be a tasty side-dish or mushy, watery beans? Keep reading to find out.

Can baked beans be frozen?

Baked beans can be frozen for 2-3 months when stored in a suitable airtight container. Their texture will be softer after freezing and then reheating so they’d be better suited for casseroles, soups or any similar dishes.

To maintain the same delicious texture, it is better to store baked beans in the fridge. They will last 3-4 days if stored correctly.

Infographic showing that baked beans can be frozen for 2-3 months.

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Always check the texture, color, and odor before eating frozen baked beans to ensure they are still good. The guidelines in the table below are estimates, and actual times will vary. The simple rule to use is: if in doubt, toss it out.

How long do baked beans last?

 Good for
Room temperature2 hours
Refrigerated3-4 days
Frozen2-3 months

How to freeze beans

Do you have leftover beans? Maybe you’re efficient and like to make food in advance, then freeze it? Follow these steps to freeze the right way.

1. Allow the beans to cool

Avoid the temptation to place hot beans in the freezer. Instead, allow them to cool to room temperature so that they maintain their structure. Premature freezing can cause them to crack, resulting in mushy, unpleasant beans when reheated. 

It is also a food safety issue placing hot food in a freezer. It can expose other food in the fridge to temperature fluctuation.

2. Package correctly

To maintain freshness, store baked beans the right way. Choose a freezer-safe container that is a suitable size for the leftovers. You may want to use multiple single-serve containers so that you can defrost smaller quantities at a time.

Are you likely to microwave the beans when you use them next? If yes, then use microwave-safe freezer containers for convenience.

Tip: Choose clear containers so that you can easily see what’s in them.

3. Always label

It’s tempting to pop the beans straight in the freezer without labeling them. If you have some labels in the kitchen, it won’t take long to write the date on one. Doing this is helpful to keep tabs on how long you’ve kept your beans in storage. This step is vital because beans will only last 2-3 months before their quality starts to reduce. Labels make it easy to monitor when they need to be consumed.

Tip: Always use freezer-safe labels which will stay adhered to the bag.

4. When it’s time to eat

If time permits, remove the container from the freezer and defrost in the fridge overnight. This step avoids extreme temperature changes which affect the food quality. If you’re in a rush, pop the beans in the microwave and set to defrost as this temperature isn’t too harsh. Once defrosted, you can begin heating.

Reheating beans on the stovetop is perfectly fine. Use a low heat to warm the beans gradually. Or, reheat using the microwave.

Tip: If you have leftovers you can store them in the fridge for 3-4 days but don’t refreeze them. The texture of freezing them twice will be quite unpleasant.

Best uses for baked beans

They’re a super versatile ingredient that have many applications in the kitchen. Perfect for Mexican dishes, including chili beans or nachos. If you like a hearty breakfast, it’s hard to beat eggs, bacon, hash browns, and a side of beans.

Boston baked beans are a popular recipe thanks to the rich flavors and added meat. The spicy heat from the chorizo combined with maple syrup and Tabasco makes for an exciting dish.

Boston Baked Beans recipe

Boston Beans
Beans are perfect on their own served on thick buttered toast.

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
  • 3 chorizo sausages, chopped
  • 13.7 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 13.7 oz can baked beans
  • 1 ½ Tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp Tabasco sauce
  • Toast, to serve

Method

  1. Heat butter in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Once melted, add the onion and chorizo. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the onion softens.
  2. Add the tomatoes and beans. Stir until boiling then mix in the maple syrup and sauces.
  3. Serve beans on thick toast and garnish with chopped chives or parsley.

Are baked beans healthy?

Baked beans are packed with fiber and protein, making them a healthy start to the day.

  • Baked beans provide low GI carbohydrates, perfect for the slow release of energy.
  • One cup of baked beans offers over 1.5 vegetable servings – not too shabby.
  • You’ll receive over 10g of protein from just one cup of beans.

Final words

If you were to peer into your neighbors or friends pantry next time you visit, chances are you’ll see a can of baked beans in there. They’re a popular food that can be eaten on their own or added to a variety of other dishes.

At some stage, you’re going to have leftover beans. So what are your options? The best option is to store in the fridge if eating within the next few days.

But can baked beans be frozen? So long as they are stored in an airtight container or freezer bag, baked beans can be frozen for 2-3 months before they start to reduce in quality. Once defrosted, their texture will turn crumbly. So if you’re eating beans on their own, I’d recommend opening a new can. Save the frozen beans for casseroles, soups, chili, and other dishes where they aren’t the hero of the meal.

What’s your favorite recipe that uses baked beans? Share it with us in the comments below.

Reference:
[1] https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/are-baked-beans-good-for-you