If you could ask every person about their perfect breakfast, we guarantee that the majority of people would have a certain type of bread included. Wherever you go around the world, bread remains a staple food and there are always at least several types created specifically for breakfast.
In England and America, for instance, they have English muffins. They go well with anything on the side and are often used as a base for sandwiches and simple burgers. While you can find English muffins in most large stores worldwide, there is nothing like the taste of homemade English muffins on a weekend morning.
So, can you freeze English muffins? Yes, English muffins freeze well and retain their quality for up to 6 months when frozen. You can also pre-assemble them with toppings and still keep them frozen for several weeks. The best way to freeze English muffins is to wrap and freeze them separately in a resealable freezer bag.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about freezing English muffins.
Can You Freeze English Muffins? The Complete Guide
Despite their signaling name, English muffins have nothing to do with the little cupcakes that we call muffins. What we mean are these small, round, flat loaves that are baked on a hot plate and go well with practically anything.
English muffins can be eaten with jam, marmalade, honey, or salty additives. More importantly, they are the foundation of one of the most famous breakfast recipes – Benedictine Eggs, where they are used as a base for bacon, poached egg, and Dutch sauce.
What do you need to know about English muffins? A curious fact is that they were not invented in England, though they were invented by an Englishman.
The famous small loaves were invented in 1894 by Samuel Bath Thomas, a British immigrant in New York, and became very popular as an alternative to toasted bread.
Maybe you have heard that you should never cut an English muffin with a knife? Instead, you should poke the muffin with a fork until you can separate it in two halves.
The purpose behind this practice is to preserve the internal structure as well as possible so that the small bubbles in the middle can be filled with butter and jam.
English muffins are readily available in most stores nowadays but preparing them at home is also not difficult. As long as you have the right ingredients, all you have to pay attention to is the baking temperature, so you get a unique crispy crust and a soft, fluffy core.
How to Freeze English Muffins
Like many other baked goods, English muffins can be frozen and will retain their quality for months in a freezer.
The process of freezing, however, depends on whether you bought the muffins from the store or you prepared them yourself at home.
Step 1: Prepare the English muffins for freezing
If you have a fresh batch of homemade muffins in front of you, always allow them to cool down completely before you prepare them for freezing.
As for store-bought English muffins, we recommend freezing them as soon as possible.
Now, you need to decide whether you want to freeze them whole or pre-sliced. Pre-slicing them will allow you to separate them easier later while frozen and not affect their quality.
You should also consider preparing the English muffin sandwich or breakfast before you freeze them. If you already know what you will use them for, for example, as a sandwich, you can safely add your toppings and then freeze them.
By freezing English muffins as an already composed sandwich, you can save time later and have a pre-prepared meal that only needs reheating.
However, you should be careful with certain toppings like lettuce or other similar vegetables that do not retain their texture well when frozen. Consider using meat, cheese, and eggs, for example.
Once done, it is time to wrap your muffins and get them ready for the freezer. While you can wrap the entire batch together, we highly recommend wrapping each individual English muffin separately.
This will allow you to take out just as many muffins as you need from the bag later instead of having them stuck together. Not to mention that this increases the protection against freezer burn that destroys any food.
If you have pre-sliced your English muffins, keep the two halves together instead of freezing each half separately. We guarantee that you will not struggle with separating them once you decide to thaw.
Step 2: Freezing English muffins properly
Once you have your English muffins tightly wrapped individually, you need a trustworthy freezer bag.
Some people prefer to use the original packaging that the muffins came with from the store but we highly recommend using a proper freezer bag, like one of these, since it provides more protection from freezer burn.
The most suitable option is a resealable bag since it is the most convenient option. Make sure to take out as much air as possible before you seal it.
One of the most important parts of the freezing process is to find a suitable location in the freezer. While English muffins can last months in a freezer, their location determines whether they will last a month or three.
Look for the coldest spot you can find, which is always somewhere in the back of the freezer. This is where the temperature is always constant which decreases the chance of freezer burn.
If you keep your English Muffins close to the door or somewhere in it, they will go through constant temperature changes every time you open it, which will cause freezer burn. This happens when food releases moisture which often happens with temperature changes.
Last but not least, keep them away from foods with strong odors since they could eventually adopt some of those flavors.
Step 3: Thaw English muffins before the quality suffers
English muffins could last for up to 6 months in a freezer but we recommend consuming them within three. The longer they stay frozen, the higher the chance of freezer burn and also loss of quality.
If you are one of those people that constantly make new batches of frozen food to fill the place of the food you consume, always try to eat the oldest muffins in the freezer. Always label your frozen food so that you know the exact date of the freezing.
For pre-assembled sandwiches, consume within a few weeks to a month. Due to the ingredients and toppings that you used for your English muffins, there is additional moisture that increases the chances of freezer burn and decreases the time that they can be stored safely.
How to Tell if Frozen English Muffins Are Freezer-Burned
There are a couple of obvious tell-tale signs that prove whether food is freezer burned or not.
When it comes to English muffins, you need to look for discoloration. If there are areas that appear white, you are guaranteed that they will have a bad taste.
If you used additional ingredients to prepare a sandwich before freezing, you will know whether the muffins were freezer burned by the state of the toppings.
If they appear dry and discolored, it is a clear sign that they are no longer good to eat.
How to thaw frozen English muffins?
Freezing English muffins is so great because you can literally throw them in the oven or toaster as they are frozen and eat them in a matter of minutes. In a similar way, you can leave them to thaw and eat them later.
You can use any method to reheat frozen English muffins – from a traditional oven through a toaster-oven to a regular toaster. Let’s not forget about the microwave too.
Most modern cooking appliances have settings for frozen food that you should utilize if present.
Just remember to heat them longer than you normally would if the muffins weren’t frozen. If you have a frozen English muffin sandwich in front of you, we recommend doubling the time.
In case you are using a microwave, consider wrapping them in paper towels or at least placing one beneath and one above the muffins. This will retain the right amount of moisture and keep the taste and texture right.
Why should you avoid storebought English muffins?
English muffins and similar typically homemade foods that are nowadays available in stores are made with additional ingredients that aim to extend the life of foods.
While homemade muffins would normally keep for several days on the shelf or refrigerator, store-bought could last weeks with the added ingredients.
The problem is that those additives are not particularly healthy and safe long-term. In addition, the English muffins you see in the store are almost always full of processed sugars and fats that are obviously quite unhealthy.
Not that this is not the case with most store-bought foods but it is a valid reason for you to spend an hour or two preparing homemade English muffins that truly taste times better and are also significantly healthier.