When does blue cheese go bad? Can you freeze blue cheese? Can you freeze other blue cheese products, such as blue cheese crumbles?
It’s always hard to know how to save your favorite foods. So many foods lose their taste in the freezer whilst others freeze perfectly. Blue cheese is no different. Because there are so many unique iterations of blue cheese, it’s hard to know what will save well and what won’t.
Luckily, I’ve done the research and prepared a ‘cheat sheet’ for you! Here are all the kinds of blue cheese recipes that will freeze well, as well as all those that definitely won’t.
When Does Blue Cheese Go Bad?
Blue Cheese goes bad after being refrigerated for three or four weeks. The good news is that there are signs when it has gone bad.
At first glance, it can be difficult to tell if blue cheeses such as gorgonzola or stilton are past their best. This is because in their normal state they have a very strong scent and visible mold – sure fire signs that most other foods have gone bad!
How to Tell if Blue Cheese Has Gone Bad?
Though blue cheeses do have a naturally strong scent, when expired they will give off a very strong smell, not unlike ammonia. Even if you usually enjoy a whiff of strong cheese, this smell is likely to make you gag.
You may also see extra mold on blue cheese that has gone bad. Again, because mold is a natural part of blue cheese, you need to be able to differentiate between the ‘good’ and bad mold. If you see any fuzzy spots on the surface of the cheese, this is a sign that it has spoiled.
If your cheese is exhibiting either of these two signs, it’s time to throw it away. Whilst some people believe you can ‘save’ cheese that has gone bad, it isn’t worth the risk. Spoiled cheese can cause vomiting, stomach cramps or diarrhea and even contribute to long-term health issues like cancer.
Cheese spoils faster if you don’t wrap it well. It also spoils more quickly if left out of the refrigerator for long periods of time.
Can You Freeze Blue Cheese?
Yes, you can freeze blue cheese. I should warn you that blue cheese is not the best cheese to freeze, though, as low temperatures can kill the mold that flavors and ripens the cheese.
That being said, it isn’t the worst cheese to freeze either. Since it is relatively hard and not soft, it can be frozen.
Because of the moisture content of blue cheese, freezing it can cause the cheese to be more crumbly than it normally would be. However the taste and nutrition are not affected by the freezer, except in the case of freezer burn. The texture of the cheese is the only quality that is significantly affected. Because of this, blue cheese is harder to slice after being frozen.
Can You Freeze Homemade Blue Cheese Sauce?
The perfect accompaniment for chicken wings, blue cheese sauce can be frozen as well. To freeze the sauce, place it in a container with a few extra inches of space. This is so when the liquid freezes, it has space to expand into.
Frozen blue cheese sauce can last for about six months when stored in this way.
Of course, there are several different recipes for a homemade blue cheese sauce. Depending on the ingredients used, different sauces may last longer or shorter in the freezer.
When freezing homemade sauce, consider the ingredients and use good judgment. Or, when making a sauce, consider making less of the sauce itself and freezing any excess cheese instead.
Can You Freeze Blue Cheese Crumbles?
Blue cheese crumbles actually freeze better than blue cheese as a block. The main problem with freezing blue cheese in a block is the change in texture. Freezing doesn’t change the taste or nutritional value, so when you freeze crumbles, you don’t have to worry about any of the problems with freezing a block of cheese.
Simply collect the blue cheese crumbles in small containers or plastic bags of one pound or less to facilitate easier access and faster freezing. Then place them in the freezer. Frozen blue cheese crumbles last between six months and a year.
How to Freeze Blue Cheese
Freezing blue cheese is simple.
Because freezing makes blue cheese more difficult to slice, you should slice blue cheese before freezing. This will make it easier to defrost and use little by little.
To begin with, wrap each slice of blue cheese with waxed paper. Make sure that each slice is wrapped tightly to prevent freezer burn.
Next, place the slices into a plastic bag. Squeeze the air out of the plastic bag and seal it tight. Finally, label the bag to remember the date it was frozen and what it is.
How Long Does Blue Cheese Last in The Freezer?
Properly stored in the freezer, blue cheese will keep for 6 months at its best quality. Beyond this point the cheese will still be safe to eat, however the quality and texture are more likely to deteriorate.
How to Thaw Blue Cheese?
You can’t throw blue cheese in the microwave to defrost it for fear of it coming out of the microwave in a puddle. For that reason, you have to think ahead. A day before you want to use or eat the blue cheese, transfer it from the freezer to the refrigerator.
After about a day, the cheese will be ready to use. It can be refrozen afterward, but one should remember that repetitive refreezing can cause an increased change in texture.
On the other hand, if you are adding the cheese to a meal or a dish in which the cheese will be melted, you can skip the defrosting step. Just take or cut off a piece of frozen cheese and add it to your recipe.
How to Use Defrosted Blue Cheese?
Defrosted blue cheese can be used like unfrozen blue cheese can, but it is better suited for specific uses. Because the texture is changed after freezing, thawed blue cheese is generally better when used in recipes where it needs to melt.
On the other hand, if you froze blue cheese crumbles, these can be used on nearly anything you would use them on before. Blue cheese, when frozen, gets crumbly and hard to slice. If it is already crumbled, you should be able to use it as normal.
I recommend that you use frozen blue cheese in more complex recipes in which it mixes into other ingredients. Once you learn when and how to use defrosted blue cheese, it isn’t that hard to add it into your normal recipes.