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Can You Freeze Buttermilk? – Sustainable Cooks

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Learn all the tips and tricks for Freezing Buttermilk to save money and prevent food waste. A stash of frozen buttermilk can be used for breakfast recipes, dressings/sauces, and baking recipes, and it makes a fantastic marinade!

frozen cubes of buttermilk in a teal silicone tray.

Buttermilk is a super versatile ingredient, but sometimes you can’t use the whole container before the expiration date.

Sure, there are buttermilk substitutions out there, but sometimes you just want the real stuff without having to run to the store.

With just a few simple tricks, you can build a freezer stash of frozen buttermilk to use in many delicious recipes.

Can You Freeze Buttermilk?

Yes! Thanks for the high-fat content in buttermilk, it freezes incredibly well.

Once thawed, you may notice some separation but a quick whisk by hand or an immersion blender will return it to a perfectly useable state. It won’t be as thick as it was when it was fresh, but you’ll still get that great buttermilk taste.

How to Freeze Buttermilk

*I’ll walk you through it here with some photos and tips, and you’ll also find a printable recipe card at the bottom of the post with exact measurements, etc. You can also click “jump to recipe” to skip down.

There are a lot of different containers you can use for storing frozen buttermilk. I prefer jam/jelly jars (4 or 8 oz) Souper Cubes (1/2 cup or the 2 tbsp size are my favorite), ice cube trays, freezer bags, or muffin tins.

Freezing buttermilk in Ice cube trays/Souper Cubes/Muffin Tins

Pour buttermilk into your tray of choice. I prefer 1/2 cup or 2 tbsp size trays because they allow you to easily measure how much buttermilk to defrost for recipes.

Transfer the trays to the freezer and allow them to freeze until hard (~2-4 hours). Once frozen, remove the cubes from the trays and transfer them to freezer-safe storage.

a silicone tray partially filled, with a pint of buttermilk on a grey board.

Freezing Buttermilk in Canning Jars

To freeze buttermilk in canning jars, select clean wide-mouth jars. Allow for 1 inch of headspace (the space between the top of the liquid and the top of the jar) to give everything room to expand in the freezer.

3 jars full of buttermilk

Freezing buttermilk in freezer bags

If you’re short on freezer space, freezing in sandwich or quart-size freezer bags works exceptionally well.

You can fill the bags, secure them, and lay them down on a baking sheet or plate, and freeze them flat. Once frozen, you can store the bags stacked in the freezer to save space.

To make it easier to fill the bags, I place them in a large drinking glass and roll the tops down up and over the rim of the glass.

Two photos showing the process of filling freezer bags on a tray to freeze buttermilk.

Frequently asked questions

How Long does buttermilk last in the freezer?

You can keep frozen buttermilk in a conventional freezer for up to three months, or 6-12 months in a deep/stand-alone freezer.

Once thawed, I would not refreeze buttermilk.

How do you defrost frozen buttermilk?

If freezing in jars, you can defrost at room temperature for a few hours by placing the jar(s) in a bowl of cool water. Alternatively, you can put the jars in the fridge overnight. Do not microwave frozen jars or immerse them in hot water as they could crack.

If you freeze in muffin tins, ice cube trays, or freezer bags, you can defrost the frozen buttermilk directly in the freezer bag placed in a bowl of cool water. Additionally, you can microwave the cubes on low power in a microwave in 30 second bursts.

Once defrosted, use the buttermilk within 24 hours.

Can you freeze buttermilk in its original container?

You could use the original packaging as long as there is a secure way to close the lid and the container isn’t completely full.

You need to allow space for the buttermilk to expand as it freezes.

How do you reheat frozen buttermilk?

Heat the buttermilk gently in a saucepan on low, or in a microwave for 20-30 seconds at a time.

Whisk vigorously once it has thawed, as the consistency will be grainy and potentially clumpy.

Pro Tips/Recipe Notes on Freezing Buttermilk

  • To prevent waste, freeze the buttermilk in portions that you know you’ll use for your favorite recipes. Once you have defrosted it, you’ll need to use it within ~24 hours.
  • If you know you’ll need to defrost your portions quickly, it is best to freeze them in smaller portions so they’ll melt faster.

More “How to” Recipes Like This

frozen buttermilk in a silicone tray and small plastic ziplocs.

Prevent your screen from going dark

Freezing in Canning Jars

  • Select clean wide-mouth jars. Allow for 1 inch of headspace to allow the buttermilk to expand in the freezer.

  • Freeze with the lid on for 6 hours. Label.

Freezing in Silicone Trays, Ice Cube, or Muffin Trays

  • Pour buttermilk into trays. Traditional ice cube trays are 3/4 oz per cube. Traditional muffin trays are 3 1/2 oz per section.

  • Place on a flat surface in the freezer and freeze for 2-4 hours.

  • Remove cubes and store in freezer bags.

Freezing in Plastic Freezer Bags

  • Pour buttermilk into freezer bags. Close carefully while pressing out any trapped air.

  • Place on a flat surface in the freezer and freeze for 2-4 hours.

  • Label with amount in each bag, and store stacked in the freezer.

  1. Store in a conventional freezer for up to three months, or 6-12 months in a deep/stand-alone freezer.
  2. Defrost jars at room temperature in a bowl of cool water, in the fridge overnight, or in the microwave at 50% power for 30 seconds at a time until fully defrosted. Do NOT defrost frozen jars in the microwave.
  3. Defrost bags of buttermilk in a bowl of cool water for a few hours, or in the fridge overnight.

Serving: 8ozCalories: 160kcalCarbohydrates: 13gProtein: 9g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.



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