Can you Freeze Philadelphia Cream Cheese?

Q. I like to use Philadelphia cream cheese on my bagels and in nacho dips. I live alone, however, and can’t go through a whole container on my own before the expiry date. I now don’t buy it very often because I know I won’t be able to finish it all and I don’t like to waste money by throwing away good food. I heard somewhere that you can freeze Philadelphia cream cheese, but I don’t know if that’s correct. Wouldn’t the cream cheese separate? I want to give it a try, but thought I would ask first! Can you freeze Philadelphia cream cheese?

A. Yes, you can freeze Philadelphia cream cheese. However, you are correct in your concern that it may separate during the freezing process. You may find that it’s not perfect for spreading on bagels, but it can be returned to enough of its former consistency to use in dips and baking. When cream cheese is frozen and then thawed, the liquids and solids tend to separate, and the resulting texture can be a bit grainy. People often mistake this to mean that the cream cheese has gone bad and cannot be consumed. In fact, the quality of the cream cheese isn’t affected by freezing, and the taste should remain the same.

How to freeze Philadelphia Cream Cheese?

If you plan on freezing an entire package of Philadelphia cream cheese for later use, it can be frozen unopened in its original package. Simply place the unopened package of Philadelphia cream cheese in the freezer for future use. If you are freezing leftover Philadelphia cream cheese, or only plan on using small amounts at a time, you may want to freeze it in smaller serving sizes.

Using small snack sized freezer bags, spoon in the desired amount of cream cheese into each freezer bag before sealing and labeling the bags. Label and date the bags and place in the freezer. If freezer block-style Philadelphia cream cheese, cut the cream cheese into slices and wrap them in a double layer of plastic wrap before freezing in freezer bags.

To use frozen Philadelphia cream cheese, remove from the freezer several hours before needed and allow to that in the fridge. If separation has occurred, simply massage the freezer bag or stir the cream cheese with a spoon to reincorporate all the ingredients before use. Use thawed Philadelphia cream cheese within 24 hours for best results, and do not refreeze previously frozen cream cheese.

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