Freezing Honey: Everything You Need to Know

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Honey has been used since Egyptian times, and it’s well-known for its sweet flavor and versatility. It’s a tremendous consumable, yet it’s still the main ingredient for various skin creams, foods, and medicines. The power this resource has is truly remarkable, but can you freeze honey?

Honey can be frozen like various other resources. Although honey is known for its longevity, freezing honey can prolong its life even further. Freezing honey at the correct temperature will eliminate bacterial growth and reduce the chances of crystallization, which tends to spoil honey.  

As you can see, you’re able to freeze honey without encountering any problems. However, should you be doing it? To help you understand this topic further, we’ve put together a comprehensive post about everything you need to know about freezing honey. Want to increase the lifespan of your honey? Or want to save it for a rainy day? Checkout the below:

Does freezing raw honey destroy nutrients?

Raw honey is known to contain an abundance of different valuable nutrients. Because of this, it’s found in an absurd number of medicines and healthy foods. To help you gain a better visualization of this, here’s a list of nutrients that are located within raw honey:

Note – The below table is for serving sizes of 100g.

Carbohydrate (G)82.4
Water (G)17.1
Sugars (G)82.12
Fiber (G)0.2
Calcium (MG)6
Iron (MG)0.42
Magnesium (MG)2
Phosphorus (MG)4
Potassium (MG)52
Sodium (MG)4
Zinc (MG)0.22
Copper (MG)0.04
Selenium (MG)0.08
Vitamin C (MG)0.5
Riboflavin (MG)0.04
Niacin (MG)0.12
Vitamin B-6 (MG)0.02
Folate (MG)2
Choline (MG)2.2
Folate (MG)2

Source: USDA 

As you can see from the above table, there’s an abundance of different nutrients that can be found in a 100g serving of raw honey. Needless to say, this is something that you don’t want to lose out on from freezing your honey. But does freezing raw honey destroy nutrients?

You’ll be happy to know that freezing raw honey does not negatively impact the number of nutrients found in raw honey. Therefore, if you’re worried that your honey will become expired but you’re not quite ready to consume it, you may want to consider freezing it.

However, don’t just grab your honey jar and place it in the freezer, as there is a right and wrong way of achieving this. Luckily for you, we detail this below so you can guarantee yourself that your honey won’t become crystallized or spoiled.

But, before we get into that, let’s talk about if you should freeze honey or not. Because you can, doesn’t necessarily mean you should.

Should you freeze honey?

As we’re aware, honey can be stored for a substantial amount of time, considering it’s a naturally produced resource. But should you freeze honey? Well, in all honestly, there’s no harm in freezing honey.  

Although honey can last a vast amount of time without becoming spoiled, freezing the produce just provides it with that added layer of security. It’ll eliminate the possibilities of bacterial growth becoming an issue, won’t affect the sweet flavor honey offers, and it also won’t take away any of its valuable nutrients. Therefore, it isn’t an issue to freeze honey.

Many professional and even amateur beekeepers freeze their honey. It’s due to their passion for honey, as it can be devastating if it were to spoil. Without a doubt, the best way to keep honey fresh and edible is by freezing it. Whether it’s a small or large amount, either supply can benefit from being frozen until used for other products or consumed.

Most common freezers are good enough to freeze honey at an adequate temperature which is required to ensure it doesn’t crystallize or become spoiled. This temperature should be around the minus four degrees Celsius mark. Otherwise, you could run into some difficulties.

Can raw honey be frozen?

After becoming knowledgeable on the above, I’m sure you’re now aware that you can freeze honey. Whether this honey is raw, honeycomb, beeswax, or anything else for that matter, it can be frozen to increase its longevity. It’s a superb way of boosting the raw honeys lifespan, and this type of process is widely used within the honey production industry.

But it isn’t as simple as just putting raw honey into a jaw and freezing it. Because of this, you need to become familiar with the below. Here we go into detail about how to freeze honey successfully, along with various tips to ensure that your honey doesn’t become spoiled during the process. Here’s what you need to know:

How to freeze honey

When freezing honey, you’re able to achieve this the right way and the wrong way. To reduce the chances of your raw honey becoming spoiled, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the below how-to guide.

  1. First, you’ll want to obtain a glass airtight and moisture container (make sure this is specifically labeled for freezing). The first step is crucial, and failing this can result in your honey becoming spoiled rapidly. This is because air can introduce volatile components to your honey, causing it to ferment. Including this, water can have similar effects, so ensure yourself nothing can enter the closed container.
  • Now you’ve got a container, you’ll want to pour your honey inside. There’s no magical way to achieve this, but there are a few golden rules you’ll want to remember to ensure your honey stays protected. Honey is known to expand while freezing. Because of this, allow for at least an inch of expansion. Also, when pouring the honey into the container, be sure the lid is clean before the next steps. This could weaken the airtight and moisture capabilities. The most effective way of cleaning the honey is with a cloth that’s been dipped in warm water.
  • Once you’ve completed the above steps, you’ll want to wrap the container in a freezer-suitable re-sealable bag. Food put into a freezer can quickly absorb odors from one another. To reduce this dramatically, consider putting a re-sealable bag around it.
  • When you’re happy you’ve accurately undergone the above, you can now place it into a freezer.

As you can see, storing your honey in a freezer isn’t difficult when you understand the appropriate way of doing it. However, I’d still become familiar with the below tips to enhance the chances of your honey not becoming spoiled.

Tips for freezing honey

When you’re freezing honey, the last thing you’ll want to encounter is it becoming spoiled. This isn’t ideal at all, and it may even ruin your day. To avoid this, you’ll want to become knowledgeable on this next section of the post. Here are some tips you’ll want to consider when freezing your precious honey.

1.Store honey in a good container

The first tip I want to provide you is that you must store honey in a good container. But what is a suitable container, you ask? You’ll want to opt-in for a glass container when storing honey because it’s ideal for freezing applications and airtight. If you find any container that suits these requirements, it’ll be considered a good honey container.

If you can, many professional beekeepers prefer to freeze jars instead of sandwich box-like containers. It can help with defrosting it down the road, and because of its liquid nature, it allows for better and more efficient storage.  

Also, remember that price and quality need to be considered when selecting a suitable container. Many cheap containers claim they’re airtight and can be situated in freezer environments, yet many can break. Therefore, save yourself the hassle and choose a well-reviewed container suitable for that specific application.

2.Always allow for expansion

When choosing a container, you may want to go up a size or consider not storing as much honey in a single container. This is because honey tends to expand when frozen. When honey is frozen, it can expand upwards of around one inch. Without a doubt, if the container was too small for this purpose, you may notice a slight crack within the container. If this occurs, you’ll undoubtedly run into several issues down the line.

You can counteract this issue in two ways. You can go up a container size than you previously thought or reduce the amount of honey you want to freeze. Either option will work, and it depends on your situation.

3.Never re-freeze honey

Something else you’ll want to remember is to never re-freeze honey, and this is the same with any food. Above, we mentioned that freezing doesn’t destroy the nutritional value of honey. However, we didn’t mention anything about flavor and texture.

Don’t worry yet. Freezing honey once won’t change the flavor or texture of the produce (unless defrosted incorrectly), but re-freezing honey undoubtedly will. When you take any food out of the freezer, the cells within the food expand. Then, when you put the food back into the freezer, they decrease and often burst. When this occurs, the food will feel mushy and less tasteful when it’s defrosted again.

4.Have a backup power supply

If you’re a passionate beekeeper who wants to store their honey for a rainy day effectively, you’ll want to ensure that your freezer has a backup power supply. I’m sure you understand why after consuming the above information, and it’s because you cannot re-freeze honey. Therefore, if you regularly live somewhere with power cuts or want to decrease the chances of your honey becoming spoiled, you need a backup electricity supply to your freezer.

Hopefully, after reading the above how-to guide and becoming knowledgeable on these tips, you should feel comfortable about storing honey in a freezer. Many people think storing honey in a freezer is questionable, but if you store it correctly, it shouldn’t course any backlash on its nutritional value, texture, or even taste.

Storing your honey in a freezer is one thing. But when you need to defrost your honey, you’ll also want to undergo this the correct way. Here’s how you’re able to defrost your honey successfully:

How to defrost frozen honey

Understanding how to store your honey correctly in a freezer is excellent. However, what about defrosting it so that you can use it? Like the above, freezing honey is just as easy as defrosting it as long as you follow the correct guidance. Here’s what you need to know:

By far, the best way to defrost frozen honey is the warm water method. To successfully achieve this, check out the below how-to guide:

  1. First of all, grab your frozen honey out of the freezer.
  2. Now you’ve done this, fill up a pan of hot water (just from the tap).
  3. After, place the frozen honey in hot water. Try not to submerge the container’s lid, as water may come in contact with the honey, which could cause it to spoil.
  4. The time this process takes will depend on the size of the container. However, if you feel the water turning cold from the frozen honey, empty the container and refill it with warm tap water.

As you can see, defrosting a container of frozen honey isn’t rocket science. If you cannot get enough warm water from your tap, you could even gently heat the water on a stove. However, never let this reach boiling temperatures.

Final words

After becoming knowledgeable on the above, I’m sure you’re eager to start freezing some of your precious honey. Honey is known for its long life span, but in some cases, you’ll want to freeze honey to increase this even further. Therefore, the best way to do this is with a freezer.

If you follow the guidance above carefully, you’ll be able to successfully freeze and defrost a container’s worth of honey without spoiling its nutritional value, taste, or texture.

So, now you understand how to achieve this without harming your honey, will you be freezing some?

About Grampa Beekeeper

Having spent a lifetime tending to bees, I now want to pass my knowledge onto the next generation of beekeepers. Beekeeping may not be fashionable, but it is my life long passion! From entrance excluders to packaged bee handling, I've got you covered! I'm not the best at writing, though, so bear with me!!