The ultimate in easy, quick meals at home, pasta with sauce is a filling option when you’re in a rush. But, getting depth of flavour into a sauce takes time. So, is it possible to batch cook and store pasta sauce for the long term?
Can You Freeze Pasta Sauce?
Yes, you can freeze pasta sauce for up to 6 months. Pasta sauce is quite a general term, and there are so many types to consider, with tomato-based, cream-based, and even meat-based options.
Does Pasta Sauce Freeze Well? Yes
Can You Refreeze Pasta Sauce? Yes
How to Freeze Pasta Sauce
Freezing pasta sauce is straightforward and doesn’t require too much preparation time. You can freeze pasta sauce by following these simple steps:
- Allow to Cool: You must allow your pasta sauce to cool before trying to freeze it. Once your sauce has been cooked for the desired time, remove it from the hob. It’s a good idea to transfer it into a fresh container to help it cool down quicker.
- Portion Out: It’s helpful to split your pasta sauce into portions before you freeze it, as this means you don’t have to defrost it all at once. You can either use Tupperware containers or resealable freezer bags. Just be sure to leave some space to allow for expansion.
- Seal: If you’re using a freezer bag, seal them up whilst removing as much excess air as possible. If you’re using Tupperware containers, seal them with lids ensuring they are airtight. If they’re not, wrap them in a sheet of cling film.
- Label and Freeze: Before transferring your sauce to the freezer, label the bag or container with the date the sauce was prepared and the date it should be used. It’s then safe in the freezer for up to 6 months.
How to Freeze Cream-Based Pasta Sauce
Some websites tell you it’s unsafe to freeze cream-based pasta sauce, but this isn’t the case; you need to be a little more careful.
Ensure you don’t freeze too many whole or chopped vegetables as part of the sauce, as these might turn to mush after being in the freezer. You will also find that your cream-based sauce will separate after being frozen.
You must mix it well before freezing to achieve the desired texture. It’s also safe to freeze cheese based-sauces, but the same textural changes will occur.
3 Tips for Freezing Pasta Sauce
Now you know how to freeze it, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing pasta sauce to have the best results:
Keep it Plain
It’s much better to freeze your pasta sauce separately from any vegetables or other ingredients you want to include in your final dish. This is because certain ingredients freeze differently and must be managed differently from the sauce. A soffritto base, however, is fine to freeze.
Add Herbs After Defrosting
Certain herbs don’t freeze well, so you should avoid using these in your pasta sauce. You can always add them to the dish after defrosting. Basil, sage, thyme, and rosemary are excellent additions to pasta sauce, but they can cause a bitter taste when frozen.
Add a Pinch of Sugar
If you defrost your pasta sauce and it tastes bitter, you can reduce the bitterness by adding a pinch of sugar or perhaps a splash of cream. This helps to sweeten it up and will bring back the desired taste of the sauce if required.
How Long Can You Freeze Pasta Sauce?
You can freeze pasta sauce for around 6 months. You should be careful to split your sauce into appropriate portion sizes and store them in an appropriate sealed container to make sure it is well preserved when frozen.
If you have items in your freezer that carry a strong odour, it’s best to keep them separate from sauces that you freeze, as you don’t want the sauce taking on the flavours. Otherwise, you might get an unpleasant surprise when it comes to enjoying the sauce!
Homemade pasta sauce will last for between 3 and 4 days in the fridge. Once it has been cooked and cooled, transfer it to a glass jug and then cover in a few sheets of cling film to keep it airtight.
How Do You Defrost Pasta Sauce?
The best way to defrost pasta sauce is to place it in the refrigerator overnight. Take it out of the freezer the night before you plan to use it, and it will be ready to reheat when preparing your meal.
Alternatively, you can place your pasta sauce directly in the microwave from frozen. You should ensure this is done on a low setting and remove it every couple of minutes to stir it thoroughly. Once it is thawed, you should then heat it as desired.
Can You Refreeze Pasta Sauce?
If your pasta sauce is tomato-based, you can refreeze it once you have thawed it without any issues.
However, if you’re using a dairy-based sauce, it’s best not to refreeze it when it’s already been defrosted. This is mainly because the texture will split and become watery once defrosted.
The more times you do this, the more the sauce will deteriorate, and it won’t taste as you expected when it comes to enjoying it.
Does Pasta Sauce Freeze Well?
Overall, pasta sauce freezes well.
If you enjoy pasta but don’t like the added sugar and preservatives that are a part of most shop-bought sauces, then preparing your pasta sauce in batches and then freezing it is an excellent idea.
If you follow these instructions and stir it well once thawed, you can enjoy pasta sauce from frozen up to six months after you’ve prepared it.
Pasta Sauce Freezer Recipe
Having access to a simple, basic tomato pasta sauce can give you lots of options during the busy week. You can add a handful of olives or some shredded chicken or use it for baking pasta with mozzarella.
Batch prepare our recipe below before freezing it in portions in freezer bags:
If you’ve still got questions about freezing pasta sauce or pasta in general, then these may help:
Jarred sauces tend to have an extremely long shelf life, so there shouldn’t be a need to freeze them. If you have decided to freeze jarred sauces, then the best approach is to check the label to confirm whether it is suitable for the freezer.
Marinara is a classic pasta sauce with a simple list of ingredients. This is why it is perfect for freezing, as there aren’t too many flavours that can turn it bitter or many textures that can change.
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