The dos and don’ts of freezing the best frying oil!
Ultra-refined oils, such as canola, have a high melting point, making them suitable for deep-frying. Because there are no ideal fries, or any fried food item without canola oil, you should always keep some on hand.
However, it’s unlikely that you deep fry every day, so it’s important to store these staples safely. What is the best solution: storing it in the pantry, leaving it on the counter, stacking it in the back of the fridge, or simply freezing canola oil?
Furthermore, all store-bought canola oil says on the label not to freeze it, but there’s no explanation for that stern warning. Why is that?
We’ll answer that for you, and many more in this article. But the main question is, can you freeze canola oil after all? Yes, you can, but it won’t do you any good.
Let’s dive in and solve this mystery!
Can you freeze canola oil?
Frankly, the only time you should freeze canola oil is when used in pastries. You can knead it into the dough, and freeze it for later use.
Otherwise, that’s not a viable option. There’s no advantage in freezing canola oil; it won’t extend the shelf-life or keep it fresh. On the other hand, the structure will never be the same again.
Canola oil is easy to store: just stack it in the pantry, and forget about it until next time!
However, since canola oil’s freezing point is 14 °F (-10 ºC), you technically can freeze it below that temperature. (*)
If it’s possible, why do we advise against freezing canola oil?
How to freeze canola oil?
There is only one way to freeze canola oil without impacting its quality; by incorporating it into foods. However, the choices are limited, as it’s mainly used for deep frying.
Let’s see our options:
- Add canola oil to pastry dough, sweet or savory, and freeze them.
- Bathe some chicken wings, or breaded meat into seasoned canola oil, and freeze them for later use.
In any other cases, you shouldn’t freeze it, and simply stack it in a cool, dry pantry. But what happens if you do?
Why you shouldn’t freeze canola oil?
The main issue with freezing canola oil is that it damages the fatty cells, causing them to go rancid much faster. The structure splits when frozen, making it prone to spoiling.
The main goal is to extend the shelf life of oils by freezing, but this will not work with canola oil.
Whatever method you use or spell you cast on it, the shelf life will not exceed one year. Instead, look for canola oil in dark, glass containers to keep it as fresh as possible.
The propellants in canola oil cooking sprays are another reason they should not be frozen. Most of them lose concentration at lower temperatures, leaving the oil spray useless. (*)
We still left some questions open. Let’s go over each one!
Learn more: Can You Freeze Vegetable Oil? (HOW TO SAFELY!)
Will canola oil freeze properly?
Canola oil will most likely freeze in your freezer, although this depends on your specific appliance. Canola oil has a freezing point of 14°F (-10ºC), and some freezers do not reach that temperature.
Can you freeze butter with canola oil?
Canola oil should never be frozen, with or without butter. It will alter the texture, quality, and shelf-life.
It’s not about how long it stays frozen; the minute the fatty cells crystalize, it will never be the same. Don’t freeze butter with canola oil.
Can you freeze used canola oil?
You can, but shouldn’t freeze used canola oil. The cooking properties instantly change by freezing, be it used or fresh canola oil. The shelf-life also dramatically shortens.
However, as a general rule, you should never refreeze used cooking oil. By doing so, you seriously risk food poisoning.
What temperature does canola oil freeze at?
Canola oil has a general freezing point of 14°F (-10 ºC). Why do we say “general“?
Because it’s a natural, mixed product, that has slight variability in its properties. Every bottle can have a slightly varying freezing point.
It won’t even solidify properly in certain home freezers.
How long does it take to freeze canola oil?
Depending on how big of a batch you want to freeze, it can take 4-6 hours to freeze canola oil. Given that you have a suitable freezer with temperatures below 14°F (-10°C).
By freezing smaller chunks, you can dramatically reduce the amount of time required. Still, you shouldn’t freeze canola oil.
What happens if you freeze canola oil?
Canola oil belongs in the pantry. Freezing damages the shelf-life, cooking properties, texture, and quality of canola oil.
It will split and go rancid very quickly once frozen, as the aromatic molecules separate from the fatty cells. Freezing alters the fat structure and composition so much that it becomes unenjoyable.
In some cases, with weaker freezers, it might not even turn solid.
How to store?
Storing canola oil to get the most out of it is not rocket science; unopened, they are best for 2 years. After that, they will stay fresh and potent for 6 months.
Store them in a dry, dark, cool place, with no direct sunlight, and you’re good for 2 years.
The official recommendation is to use them within 6 months once opened. However, we suggest you use them within a year, and it will be fine.
Sealing the bottle tightly will also keep it fresh longer.
Next time you buy some, limit yourself to a yearly supply. Otherwise, freezing canola oil won’t help keep it fresh for longer.
The only way to elongate the shelf-life of canola oil is to store it without direct sunlight, and well sealed.
If you’re running out of time, make some delicious pastries with canola oil, and freeze them, baked or raw.
A well-stored canola oil equals always-perfect french fries, so it’s worth the effort.