So here goes a question: Can you freeze simple syrup? The answer is YES! What are the best ways to do it? Keep reading to find out! But first, let's talk about simple syrup.
If you're like most home cooks, you probably made a lot of simple syrup. It's such a versatile ingredient, and it's perfect for sweetening cocktails, coffee, tea, and so many other things. But what do you do when you make more than you can use in the next few days? You could bottle it and keep it in the fridge, but it will only last for a few weeks. The best solution is to freeze it!
So, what is simple syrup?
Equal parts of sugar and water make up simple syrup, an easy-to-make sweetener. Cocktails, coffee, and baking often call for simple syrup. In addition to the basic ingredients of water and sugar, you can add endless flavors to make them taste exactly the way you like.
Two types of simple syrup: Light and Heavy.
- Light simple syrup uses a 1:1 proportion of sugar and water to sweeten cold drinks.
- Heavy or rich simple syrup is made with a 2:1 ratio of sugar to water and is used to sweeten food. Unlike the 1:1 ratio, this version is more concentrated and slightly thick.
How do you make simple syrup shelf stable?
I've learned that you can extend the shelf life of simple syrup in two ways: by adding alcohol or upping the ratio of sugar to water.
Option 1 Add neutral alcohol.
Adding alcohol will help preserve the simple syrup and prevent it from going bad as quickly. Because Vodka is a neutral spirit, it will not affect the flavor of the syrup. Additionally, the Vodka will maintain the syrup's freshness and prevent it from going bad as quickly.
Option 2 Increase the ratio of sugar to water.
This will make a more concentrated syrup that will last longer — because sugar acts as a preservative. Extending the shelf life in this way is great if you plan on using the syrup for baking or making candy.
Based on the experiment from Alcademics, simple syrups' shelf lives can be prolonged by either increasing sugar content or adding neutral spirits.
These two methods are quite different from one another.
- The shelf life of simple syrup (a 1:1 ratio of sugar to water) is only a month.
- In contrast, simple syrup made with a 2:1 ratio of sugar to water lasts about six months before clouding up.
In short, why would you want rich simple syrup? For the simple reason that you can use it in small amounts to sweeten beverages. In addition, it does not spoil as quickly in the refrigerator.
The test goes as follows: they waited until they spoiled to determine how long it would take. Each container was then placed inside the refrigerator. The simple syrup would eventually become cloudy, and it would start to mold as a result.
- 1:1 simple syrup
- 1:1 simple syrup + 1 tablespoon vodka
- 2:1 rich simple syrup
- 2:1 rich simple syrup + 1 tablespoon vodka
How long will simple syrup last in the fridge?
If you store a 1:1 ratio of simple syrup in the refrigerator, it will last for a month. But when you add 1 tablespoon of neutral spirit like Vodka, it will last for up to 3 months. For the heavy simple syrup with a 2:1 ratio, it will stay in the fridge for 6 months. But when you add 1 tablespoon of Vodka, it will last for up to 9 months.
Here are the results:
- 1:1 simple syrup lasted for a month
- 1:1 simple syrup + a tablespoon of Vodka kept for three months
- 2:1 rich simple syrup kept for six months
- 2:1 rich simple syrup + 1tbsp vodka kept for over six months
How to make simple syrup
It should take about four minutes to complete this process. Additionally, you can use it for alternative corn syrup or artificially flavored syrups sold in stores.
1 Decide which sugar you want to use.
White sugar is preferred for simple syrup recipes because it has a neutral taste; brown or demerara sugar can also be used.
2 Determine your sugar to water ratio.
You can make a simple syrup with equal amounts of sugar and water (for example, a 1:1 ratio or one cup of sugar plus one cup of water). Regardless of the amount, the proportion of sugar to water determines the final result.
3 Cook your ingredients over medium-low heat.
In a small saucepan, combine sugar and water, and simmer for ten minutes, occasionally stirring until the sugar dissolved. Avoid bringing the mixture to a boil since this will cause evaporation, affecting the sugar-to-water ratio.
4 Allow the syrup to cool before storage.
Turn off the heat and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature before storing.
Can you freeze simple syrup?
Yes, it is also possible to freeze simple syrups, which will enable them to last much longer. Simple syrup freezes best when poured into small cubes and then stored in an airtight container, giving you the option to take out as much or as little as you desire when it is ready to thaw.
There are a few different ways to do it.
Option 1 Freeze in an ice cube tray
One of the easiest ways to freeze simple syrup is to pour it into an ice cube tray. This method works well if you need small amounts of syrup for individual drinks or if you want to be able to thaw the syrup quickly.
To use frozen simple syrup, just pop out a cube or two and add it to your drink. The cubes will start to melt almost immediately, so there's no need to thaw them before using.
Option 2 Freeze in a freezer-safe container
If you need to freeze a larger amount of simple syrup, or if you want to be able to use it in larger quantities at once, freezing it in a freezer-safe container is the way to go.
To thaw, simply remove the desired amount of syrup from the container and place it in a bowl or pitcher. The syrup will thaw relatively quickly, so you can add it to your drink right away.
Option 3 Freeze it in plastic dispenser bottles.
Keeping large quantities of syrup in a storage container like this is a great option. Just pour the syrup into clean, dry plastic bottles and screw on the lids. Place the bottles in the freezer upright. Thaw it in the fridge or at room temperature when you're ready to use the syrup.
Essential tips when storing simple syrup
Storing simple syrup involves a few different steps, but it's easy to do if you follow these tips:
1 Make sure the syrup is cooled completely before freezing.
It will turn into a big mess if you try to freeze hot syrup. Because simple syrup is so concentrated, it can take a while to cool down. In light of this, you should prepare the syrup a few hours before freezing it.
2 Use sanitize and dry containers.
No matter what materials you use, it's important to ensure they're clean and free of bacteria. Scrub it with dish soap and hot water, or run it through the dishwasher to sterilize it. Air-dry the container before using or filling it. Any moisture in the containers can cause the syrup to spoil.
3 Use a freezer-safe container.
Mason glass jars and BPA-free plastic containers are great options for storing simple syrup. Ensure to seal the container, so the syrup doesn't pick up any unwanted flavors or odors from the freezer. Any glass container that can seal tightly will work.
4 Leave some headspace in the container.
When liquids freeze, they expand. So if you're using a container that's not completely full, leave an inch or two of space at the top to allow for expansion.
5 Label the container with the date.
Keeping track of the syrup's time in the freezer will prove helpful. Because simple syrup can last for up to 6 months in the freezer, it's best to use older syrup first.
Why should you freeze simple syrup?
The reasons for freezing are twofold. First, it stops the syrup from crystallizing. Second, it makes the syrup last much longer. Simple syrup can last for up to 6 months in the freezer, much longer than it would stay in the fridge.
Benefits of freezing simple syrup include:
1. It stops the syrup from crystallizing.
2. It prevents bacteria from growing, which means it will stay fresh for longer.
3. You can control the amount you use because it's easy to portion out small amounts.
4. It's easy to do and more space-efficient than storing in the fridge.
5. You can use it in individual drinks or larger quantities.
Drawbacks of freezing simple syrup include:
1. It is necessary to cool the syrup to room temperature before freezing.
2. You need to use sanitized and dry containers.
3. The syrup may expand when frozen, so you need to leave some headspace in the container.
4. You need to label the container with the date to know how long it's been in the freezer.
5. You have to remember to thaw it before using it.
6. It can be challenging to get the syrup out of the container if it's completely frozen.
Freezing simple syrup is still a great way to store it for long-term use despite the drawbacks. Follow the tips above to keep your syrup fresh as long as possible.
How long does simple syrup last in the freezer?
The simple syrup can last for up to a year in the freezer with proper storage. Keep it inside an airtight, freezer-safe container to maximize its shelf life. Leave some headspace in the container to allow for expansion, label it with the date, and always use the oldest syrup first to avoid wasting it.
But if you want it to last even longer, try these tips:
1. Make sure the container is airtight.
2. Use pure cane sugar or white sugar instead of brown sugar.
3. Use distilled water instead of tap water. This is because tap water can contain impurities that can shorten the shelf life of simple syrup. So, using distilled water will help the syrup last longer.
5. Add a few drops of lemon juice to the syrup. The acidity will help preserve the syrup because it prevents bacteria from growing.
5. Add a dash of Vodka to the syrup. This may sound strange, but Vodka is a natural preservative. So, adding a dash of Vodka to your syrup will help it last for up to 2 years.
How do you thaw simple syrup?
To thaw simple syrup, just place the container in the fridge and allow it to unfreeze overnight. Or, if you're in a hurry, you can set the container in a bowl of warm water. The simple syrup will thaw much faster this way.
Once it's thawed, you can store the syrup in the fridge for 2-3 weeks.
What are some uses for frozen simple syrup?
Simple syrup can be used in many ways. You can use it to sweeten iced coffee or tea, add it to smoothies, or use it in cocktails. You can also use it to make sorbet, frosting, or sauces. If you're feeling creative, you can even use it to make popsicles. No matter how you use it, frozen simple syrup is a great way to add a little sweetness to your life.
Is there a difference between regular and flavored simple syrup?
Simple syrup comes in two varieties: regular and flavored. Regular simple syrup is just sugar and water, whereas flavored simple syrup is enhanced with flavors such as fruit or herbs.
In addition to the wide array of simple syrup uses, flavored simple syrup lends itself to preparing cocktails and other cold beverages. You can also use it to flavor desserts or coffee.
How do you make flavored simple syrup?
The process is easy. Just add your desired flavorings to the sugar and water while it's boiling on the stove. Some popular spices include:
Typically, simple syrup is clear in appearance. As soon as the simple syrup grows cloudy, it has gone bad. It means that bacteria have started to grow, making the syrup unusable. Leaving syrup unattended for days may cause it to smell bad.
The sugar molecules in simple syrup crystallize when enough of them cling together to render them insoluble in water. Sugar molecules are more likely to cluster and consolidate when combining sugar with water in a 2:1 ratio (commonly called "rich or heavy syrup").
When sugar molecules are heated, they transform into a hard structure as they cool. This causes the sugar to attach to different particles such as dust or burnt caramel. Crystallization will likely spread once some sugar crystallizes.
How to fix it: simmer the syrup for at least 10 minutes instead of merely boiling it, allowing enough sugar to invert without affecting the taste. Be cautious not to let the mixture boil, as doing so will induce evaporation, altering the sugar to water ratio.
Do you know why the simple syrup is yellow? When you caramelize the sugar, it turns yellow. It will naturally turn golden if you let it simmer for a long time.
The following scenario may apply: If you take the simple syrup out of the freezer and it seems clumpy, heat the liquid within a heat-proof glass jar in the microwave for 15-second increments until it loosens up. By doing so, you can break apart the syrup cubes and refreeze the rest.
Generally, simple syrup is made from equal parts water and sugar. If you double the sugar ratio, the result will be a thicker, sweeter syrup suitable for iced coffee, tea, lemonade, and other cold drinks.
Add one cup of water to two cups of sugar, making it a 2:1 ratio. Bring to a simmer and stir continuously until all sugar crystals dissolve. This isn't complicated at all! This recipe for double-strength simple syrup couldn't be more straightforward.