Written through Lisa Wartenberg, MFA, RD, LD top top June 29, 2021 — medically reviewed by Sade Meeks, MS, RD, Nutrition

Yogurt is a fermented dairy products product touted because that its gut-boosting properties, high protein content, and natural tang (1).

Whether you looking to prolong its shelf life or simply craving a nutritious summer treat, you might wonder whether you deserve to freeze yogurt without compromising its quality.

You are watching: Does freezing yogurt kill the good bacteria

This short article explains whether you can freeze yogurt.


*
Share top top PinterestToscaWhi/Getty Images
You have the right to store yogurt for sure in the refrigerator in a closeup of the door container in ~ 40°F (4°C) for 1–2 weeks (2, 3).

However, if you decision to keep it in the freezer, girlfriend can expand its shelf life come 1–2 month (2).

You need to take a couple of considerations into account once freezing yogurt, including yogurt’s energetic bacteria content and also texture.

Do live and active bacteria endure freezing?

The U.S. Food and Drug management (FDA) calls for that any kind of yogurt has milk and at the very least two certain strains that bacteria — Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus (4).

Some yogurt manufacturers an increase these live and active cultures with extr strains, such together Lactobacillus acidophilus and also Bifidobacteria (5).

You may know these live and active cultures together probiotics. Routinely consuming probiotic-rich foods items like yogurt might confer a host of wellness benefits, including enhanced immunity, enhanced digestive health, and lower cholesterol levels (1, 5, 6, 7).

Yogurt’s health-promoting live bacteria space thermophilic, which way that they flourish under optimal temperatures.

For yogurt’s probiotics, this variety tends to hover above 98°F (37°C) and also below 130°F (54°C). While castle are eliminated at higher temperatures, they endure in your freezer because that at the very least a couple of weeks (8, 9, 10).

One test-tube study looked in ~ frozen yogurt made v two timeless bacteria strains — L. Bulgaricus and also S. Thermophilus). After a 35-day freeze period, researchers discovered no significant decline in the lot of bacteria current in the yogurt (9).

Researchers doubt that the live bacteria merely lay dormant till the yogurt is thawed (9).

You also should take right into account that particular added ingredients, such as fruit and also grains, might be detrimental come the survival of bacter strains (10).

Textural changes

The most notable difference between yogurt the has and also hasn’t to be frozen is its structure (8, 10).

Some yogurts might look noticeably thinner or grainer texture after freezing.

It isn’t unusual to see tiered layers as you thaw your yogurt. This is because freezing collapses the protein networks in yogurt. The process releases water that, as soon as frozen, separates native the milk solids.

Thawed yogurt doesn’t do the smoothest sauces — therefore if she at all concerned about texture, save your s yogurt because that a baking project or a smoothie.

summary

The health-boosting live and active bacteria uncovered in yogurt survive freezing. The many discernible adjust is that is texture, i beg your pardon is grainier or thinner after freezing.


Consider exactly how you arrangement to use the yogurt after you freeze it.

Whether you plan to eat it on its own or usage it as an ingredient in a recipe will determine the type of yogurt it is most an ideal to your need.

Check for included stabilizers

If you planning to eat yogurt directly out of the container after freeze it, save in mind the yogurts with included stabilizers will freeze best.

Look for ingredients favor pectin (a fruit fiber), xanthan gum (a sugar), and also gelatin (a protein), which prevent yogurt indigenous separating in the freezing process. They carry out so by gelling, or loan a continuous structure come the proteins discovered in yogurt (11).

If your yogurt doesn’t have actually these stabilizers, be certain to stir your yogurt well v a clean spoon. This stays clear of the milk solids and also water indigenous separating as much as they would certainly without act so.

Then, label your yogurt and also simply stick that in the freezer. If you’re utilizing a container other than what friend purchased that in, be sure it’s sanitized before storing it.

How to thaw yogurt

While it may make some feeling to thaw her yogurt out on a countertop after freezing, it’s much safer to thaw the in the refrigerator.

This helps ensure that the yogurt continues to be within a for sure temperature selection that inhibits unsafe bacteria from prospering (11, 12).

Ideally, girlfriend should ar your frozen yogurt in the fridge the night before you plan to consume it. If you’re pressed because that time, you deserve to keep that on the counter for approximately 2 hours. If this won’t totally thaw it, it have the right to soften the yogurt.

If the yogurt was made from life milk, don’t thaw it on the respond to for any period of time. This is due to the fact that yogurt make from raw milk may contain E. Coli, which may cause condition or even fatality (13, 14).

Be sure to inspect the expiration date. Yogurt that has been frozen prior to its expiration day can quiet be consumed as lengthy as friend eat it instantly after thawing it.

Finally, always use your usual sense. Discard any type of yogurt the smells turn off or has actually noticeable signs of microbial growth, together as black mold or a slimy film, regardless of whether it has passed the expiration date.

summary

Consider just how you arrangement to usage yogurt after ~ you frozen it. If you will do it eat it directly from the container, look at for assets that incorporate a stabilizer, which will stop separation. Thaw the in the fridge overnight, but toss anything the smells or looks off.


Yogurt is a popular, tasty, and also versatile fermented dairy product product. That is health-promoting properties room plentiful.

See more: Where Do Discarded Drafts Go In Gmail Draft: Undo The Deletion

Yogurt’s live and active cultures make it through the freezing process. Still, you have to thaw the in the frozen refrigerator overnight come ensure that it stays safe come eat.

Be certain to examine for included stabilizers if you plan to eat it directly from the container, as yogurts there is no these have tendency to take it on a grainy structure after freezing.

Most s yogurts are perfect for food preparation or baking, regardless of whether they save on computer stabilizers.