Although brownies come in different varieties, there is one overriding common denominator amongst them all: chocolate! The mention of brownies conjures up thoughts of baked, soft, and chewy, chocolaty squares of indulgence.
Unless you are catering for a party, chances are you won’t be eating a big batch of brownies at once (although there is no judgment if you do). Freezing baked brownies is a great way to preserve them without risking them going off.
Whether you want to make a few batches ahead of time for a large event or to make sure you always have a ‘freshly baked’ treat around for guests, don’t hesitate to get baking and pop them in the freezer. Here is how to go about freezing brownies to best preserve their flavor and texture.
Types of Brownies
Flatter and denser than chocolate cake, brownies come in a multitude of different flavors. They can be frosted, plain, nut-filled, fudgy, contain a layer of cheesecake swirls, chocolate chips, berries, jam, and even peanut butter.
The main difference in the variety of brownies is, whether they are chewy or dry. Cakey brownies are the drier type brownies that have a lighter consistency similar to a soft cookie or piece of cake. These have an airy but firm texture that holds its shape.
To most, the best brownies are chewy and fudgy type brownies. These are very dense with a moist and gooey center.
Can Brownies Be Frozen?
Yes, brownies can be frozen and it is a great way to prolong their shelf life. In fact, brownies freeze very well maintaining their texture, taste, and moisture content once thawed. It is important not only to prepare your brownies properly for freezing but also to consider the type of brownie that you are freezing.
Brownies that contain perishable ingredients such as cheesecake fillings with cream cheese, jam, berries, or cherries will not freeze as well as other types of brownies. These types of fillings will release liquid on thawing which could result in a mushy texture once defrosted.
If your brownie recipe does not contain any such additions, it should maintain its texture and flavor very well in the freezer. For the best results, do not freeze frosted brownies. If you are making a large batch for later use, leave the frosting until after the brownies have been thawed and are ready to be eaten.
How To Freeze Brownies
There are two ways in which your batch of brownies can be frozen successfully. The method you choose will depend on the amount of space you have in your freezer and also on how you plan on using the brownies in the future.
Method 1: How to Freeze a Full Tray of Brownies
If you are planning to freeze the majority of your brownie batch, do not cut it into squares. Keeping it in one uncut slab is the best way of protecting the brownies from oxidation and freezer burn. Air can only enter from the edges of the slab which means the center will be fully protected from drying out.
Step 1: Cool
Let your batch of brownies cool down in the baking pan once baked. Once cool enough to handle without oven mitts, you can turn the entire slab out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Step 2: Line a Clean Tray
Line a clean metal tray (or any large freezer-friendly tray or plate) with baking parchment paper or wax paper. Carefully place the cooled brownie slab onto the covered tray. If you do not have space in your freezer for a whole pan, cut the slab in half and use two smaller trays.
Step 3: Plastic Wrap
Wrap the entire tray of brownies with cling film, making sure all the corners are covered well and no gaps are left open for air to sneak in. If you have frosted brownies, flash freeze the batch by placing it uncovered in the freezer for an hour until the frosting is solid. Then take it out of the freezer and cover completely with plastic wrap.
Step 4: Foil Wrap
Now, wrap the whole slab again with a layer of aluminum foil. This will prevent freezer burn from contact with extra moisture. Ensure that all edges are properly closed and sealed without gaps.
Step 5: Bag It
Place your covered slab of brownies in a large airtight freezer bag, pressing the air out before closing the seal. If you do not have a large enough plastic bag, add another layer of plastic wrap as a substitute for the freezer bag to ensure it is completely airtight.
Step 6: Label and Freeze
Label it with the date before placing it in the freezer. This way you can keep track of how long your brownies have been frozen.
Method 2: How to Freeze Individual Brownies
Step 1: Cool
If you are freezing a batch of freshly baked brownies, let them completely cool down to room temperature.
Step 2: Cut
Cut the brownies into squares with a serrated knife or bread knife. Wipe the knife between each cut to keep clean edges.
Step 3: Cling Wrap
Wrap each brownie in plastic wrap, making sure all the corners are covered with no gaps. If you have frosted brownies, flash freeze them by placing them uncovered in the freezer just until the frosting is solid. Then take it out of the freezer and wrap individual pieces in cling film.
Step 4: Foil Wrap
Wrap each brownie in aluminum foil. This will prevent freezer burn. Ensure that all edges are properly closed and sealed without gaps.
Step 5: Bag It
If you are going to eat the brownies within 1 to 2 weeks of freezing you can skip steps 3 and 4, placing them directly in an air-tight freezer bag. If you are unsure how long the brownies will be in the freezer, place the cling film and foil-wrapped brownies in an air-tight resealable freezer bag and press out all the air before sealing thoroughly.
Step 6: Label and Freeze
The last thing you need to do is label your brownie freezer bags with the date before placing it in the freezer. This way you can keep track of how long your brownies have been frozen.
How To Thaw Frozen Brownies
The way you thaw your brownies may depend on how you are going to eat them. Brownies are safe to thaw at room temperature, however, if you want to mix your brownie into vanilla ice-cream you can cut it into small pieces and mix it directly into the ice-cream while still frozen.
Here are the best ways to defrost brownies:
Option 1: Remove the brownies from all the packaging and place them on a plate or in a container to thaw at room temperature for an hour.
Option 2: If packing smaller pieces for lunch, place the individually wrapped brownie as is, into your lunchbox. It will be thawed and ready to eat after 1 or 2 hours.
Option 3: If you are thawing an entire brownie block, remove all the wrapping and let it thaw at room temperature. Frost the brownie slab after thawing and cut into squares.
Brownies can be warmed up and served with ice-cream as a gooey dessert, eaten as a tea-time snack, or served at a party with delectable frosting. No matter how you like your chocolaty baked goods, don’t worry about letting leftovers go to waste. Just pop it in the freezer, well-sealed, and you’ll have a sweet snack on hand at the drop of a hat.
Up Next: Can You Freeze Angel Food Cake?
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