Q. I took a drive out to a specialty cheese shop about 45 minutes out of town, and bought a large wedge of Parmesan cheese. They then grated the cheese for me on the spot, and placed the grated cheese in a plastic container. It wasn’t cheap, but it was the good stuff, not the processed cheese, so I don’t mind. I use grated Parmesan cheese sparingly, though. Although I know that it has a long shelf-life in the fridge, I’m wondering if I can extend the shelf life by freezing it. Can you freeze grated Parmesan cheese?
A. Yes, you can certainly extend the shelf life of grated Parmesan cheese by freezing it. Parmesan cheese has a low moisture content, making it ideal for freezing. It doesn’t have a tendency to clump together, and is not very susceptible to freezer burn. Grated Parmesan cheese should stay soft even while frozen. It can be used directly out of the freezer, without any need to thaw ahead of time. It’s the ideal cheese for freezing!
To freeze, you may want to consider freezing the grated Parmesan cheese in the container given to you at the store, assuming it has an air-tight lid. Remove the quantity that you would like to keep in the fridge, and then seal the container tightly. Label and date it. Frozen grated Parmesan cheese should keep up to a year in the freezer.
Once the container is sealed and labeled, I recommend tying an elastic band around it for added spill protection. Then, I would slide the container into a freezer bag. Remove the excess air, then seal it. This provides extra protection in case the plastic container isn’t entirely air-tight or cracks in the freezer. It will also catch any of the cheese should the lid somehow open in the freezer, avoiding wasted cheese and a mess in your freezer.
To use the frozen cheese, first give the container a little tap and a shake. This will break up any small clumps that may have formed. Open the package carefully, and use a clean utensil to scoop out the desired amount. Then, reseal the container and return to the freezer. It’s that simple! Frozen grated parmesan cheese can be added directly to pastas, soups, stews, and more directly from the freezer, no thawing necessary. If you choose not to remove the Parmesan from the freezer indefinitely, it should be stored in the fridge. It should last up to a month or more in the fridge.