The good news is miso paste can easily be frozen. Yup. You read that right. You can absolutely freeze the miso paste.
We all know how hard it is to keep the delicious miso paste leftovers, since it doesn’t really last that much in the fridge. Imagine my thrill when I learned how to freeze miso paste and preserve its amazing taste and texture for as long as possible.
The paste that is made of the fermented beans that has an umami flavor is an essential ingredient in a lot of Japanese dishes, including of course, the miso soup. So, having it tucked in the freezer allows me to easily make myself miso soup whenever I crave it.
Freezing miso paste
You have many options when it comes to freezing miso paste. You can choose whatever suits you best:
- A good tip when you freeze miso paste is to pour your miso paste in a silicone ice cube tray. This will allow you to just defrost the portion you need, whichever number of ice cubes instead of having to defrost the whole batch.
- You can also pour your miso paste in small separate freezer-friendly containers so that you can store the whole batch in one go.
- Don’t worry about freezing the paste in plastic containers since frozen miso paste is malleable to some extent, so you won’t have to completely defrost the whole batch to take a portion of it.
- Airtight freezer bags also work perfectly with the miso paste. It actually saves you space in the freezer, once you spread the miso paste flat inside the bag and tightly seal it.
How long can miso paste stay in the freezer?
Miso paste can last in the freezer for up to a year without any change in taste or texture.
What does miso taste like?
Before I try to describe to you how miso paste tastes like in details, it is worth knowing that it is not meant to be eaten on its own or as a condiment, but rather with salads, soups, stir-fries, sauces, and marinades due to its amazing and pungent umami flavor.
With that being said. Miso paste has a tangy, with a bit of a salty taste because of the fact that it is basically fermented beans. However, this is actually why it is a healthy additive to your meals as it is filled with probiotics which help in food digestion.
Keep in mind, though, not to over-boil the miso paste to avoid killing the healthy bacteria. You can only simmer it until it is hot.
The authentic miso soup is made of fermented beans. Usually, the darker the miso paste, the longer it has been fermented, the stronger their tangy taste, and the longer it can withstand freezing.
However, now there are a lot of different varieties of miso pastes. Not all of them are made of beans. Which means that not all of them are gluten-free because of the different ingredients it is now made of.
Despite how they may vary in their ingredients, yet there is one common thing, which is the signature umami taste common with most of the Japanese dishes that takes the flavor to a whole new level.
These are the types of miso available to cook with:
It is a perfect mix between both, soybeans and rice which has a less salty, yet savory, flavor than the authentic Miso paste. Commonly made in western countries.
Mostly made of soybeans. Exist in different forms, either red or white, which have a sweeter taste than the yellow one.
It is a bit different than the other types of miso pastes. Made of fermented barley malt. The red one is salty and full of flavor, while the yellow is sweet and light.
Made of rice malt and has a dark brown color. Which somehow indicate how rich in flavor it really is.
Frequently asked questions:
Where can I find miso paste?
Miso paste can sometimes be sold under the name “Soybeans paste” Which as we agreed before, is basically the same thing since the authentic miso paste is made of fermented soybeans.
I like to buy mine from any Asian food store. I usually find it in the refrigerated condiment section since it can’t be left outside of the fridge.
There is also a pretty high chance for you to find it in health stores as miso paste is considered a nutritionally rich food.
What are the health benefits of miso paste?
It is filled with macro and micronutrients. Proteins, Iron, vitamin K, phosphorus, zinc, and many more minerals. However, what really gives miso paste a significant health advantage other than its vitamins and minerals is the healthy microorganisms and probiotics. It is packed with probiotics that aid in digestion.
That’s why, overcooking miso paste is wrong as it will most likely kill most of the beneficial bacteria. I just add miso paste before I turn the heat off and enjoy it warm. Freezing and refrigerating miso paste is done to preserve the bacteria and keep them intact.
Keep in mind, though, that miso paste does contain a considerable amount of sodium because of the amount of salt present, so pre-hypertensive and hypertensive patients should avoid eating large amounts of the miso paste.
What can I make with miso paste?
It should be a stable additive in your kitchen because of the fact that it can be used in plenty of food. Especially, Japanese dishes. It is exceptionally best to be used in miso soup, ramen noodles, vegetable stir-fry. It also gives an extra kick to salad dressings and stews.
However, if you are going to use miso paste, make sure not to bring it to a boil.
Is there a substitute for miso paste?
Unfortunately no. Some people tried to compare soy sauce with the distinctive miso paste because of the resembling tangy taste. However, nothing can be compared to the umami flavor that comes from miso paste. Good thing that it is widely available in supermarkets.
Can you eat miso paste raw?
Generally speaking, you can certainly enjoy raw miso paste without worrying as it is fermented. However, it is to a great extent an acquired taste. Not everyone can enjoy its strong and salty flavor without lighting it up with other flavors.
Does miso paste need to be refrigerated?
Tightly sealed containers don’t pose a problem if they are left on the counter without being refrigerated. However, once they are opened, it is advised to leave them in the fridge at a low temperature. This is done to preserve their quality and the healthy bacteria present.
Freezing Miso Paste
Throughout this article, different ways of freezing miso paste were presented so that you can choose whichever way suits you best, either freezing miso paste in one large batch, or divide it into small-sized portions ready for serving.
The most important thing is to have it in your kitchen. Because, who wouldn’t want a healthy, yet, tasty addition to every meal?