Apples are a staple fall ingredient that can be used in all sorts of baked goods, from pies to muffins to cakes. Apple cake is a delicious cake that is often made in the colder months when apples are in season. But if you have leftovers, can you freeze apple cake?
The short answer is yes; you can absolutely freeze apple cake to enjoy later. Freezing is a great way to save apples and prevent waste. With proper freezing and thawing methods, apple cake can keep well in the freezer for up to 3–6 months.
Below, we’ll discuss how to properly freeze and store apple cake, how long it keeps in the freezer, how to thaw it, and what to expect after thawing frozen apple cake. We’ll also cover some tips for freezing apple cake for the best results.
How to Freeze Apple Cake
Freezing apple cake is simple. Here are some step-by-step instructions on how to properly freeze apple cake:
Allow the cake to Cool completely.
It’s important to let the apple cake cool completely before freezing. This prevents condensation from forming and ruining the texture. Allow the apple cake to come to room temperature before covering or freezing.
Wrap the cake well.
Wrap the apple cake very well in plastic wrap, foil, or place it in an airtight container or freezer bag. Make sure there are no air pockets. This prevents freezer burn. For added protection, you can double-wrap the cake.
Label Wrap with Date
Clearly label the packaging with the date. This makes it easy to track how long it’s been frozen.
For best quality, freeze the apple cake quickly once wrapped. The faster it freezes, the better it retains texture and flavor. Place in the coldest part of the freezer.
Store Flat if possible.
Try to freeze apple cake in a flat, even layer rather than a tall cake shape if possible. This helps it freeze quicker and prevent cracking.
How Long Does Apple Cake Last in the Freezer?
With proper freezing methods, apple cake can be frozen for quite some time.
Here is how long apple cake lasts frozen:
- 1-2 months: Optimal quality
- 3-6 months: Still edible, but some decline in texture
- 6+ months: Drying out, freezer burn likely
The shelf life depends on a variety of factors, like the freshness of the ingredients, storage temperature, and wrap. A well-wrapped cake lasts longer. Monitoring freezer temperature helps. Use frozen apple cake within 6 months for the best flavor.
How to Thaw a Frozen Apple Cake
Once you are ready to enjoy the frozen apple cake, use one of these methods to properly thaw it:
Thaw Overnight in the fridge
For best texture, thaw the apple cake overnight in the refrigerator. This slow thaw helps prevent moisture loss. Leave it wrapped while thawing.
Thaw at Room temperature.
You can also leave frozen apple cake wrapped on the counter to thaw at room temperature for 2–3 hours. Keep an eye on it, as counters vary in warmth.
For quick thawing, use the defrost setting on the microwave, checking often. This can result in some spots being more moist.
You can even enjoy frozen apple cake straight from the freezer if it is very cold and firm. Let it sit for 10–15 minutes before slicing. It will be more crumbly unless fully thawed.
Thawed apple cake is best consumed within 3–4 days. Avoid refreezing after thawing if possible, as this compromises texture.
What to Expect After Freezing Apple Cake
Freezing and thawing do impact apple cake’s texture and flavor somewhat.
Here’s what to expect from a thawed apple cake:
- Slightly drier, more crumbly texture
- The bottom crust may be soggy if thawed improperly.
- Apples won’t be quite as firm.
- Loss of subtle flavor nuances
- Less cake rise, slight denseness
- Possible ice crystals in the frosting
While freezing does affect quality, frozen apple cake still tastes great. Proper thawing minimizes changes in texture and moisture. Well-wrapped cakes hold up better. The apple flavor still shines through.
Tips for Freezing Apple Cake
Follow these tips to get the best results from freezing apple cake:
- Use firm apples like Granny Smith or Honeycrisp for cakes that are frozen.
- Underbake the cake slightly before freezing to account for moisture loss.
- Allow cake to cool fully before freezing; no warm cake
- Double-wrap the cake in plastic wrap and foil for protection.
- Freeze the cake in flat, even layers if possible to prevent cracking.
- Thaw the cake completely before eating for the best texture.
- Consume within 3–4 days of thawing and avoid refreezing.
With proper freezing and thawing, you can absolutely freeze apple cake for later enjoyment. Freeze leftover apple cake promptly in airtight packaging and consume it within 6 months for delicious apple flavor. Thaw overnight in the fridge or at room temperature before serving your thawed apple cake.
Frequently Asked Questions About Freezing Apple Cake
Can you freeze apple cake with frosting?
Yes, you can freeze apple cake with frosting. Make sure the frosting and cake layers are completely cooled before assembling and freezing to prevent the frosting from melting. Some separation of the frosting from the cake may occur after thawing.
Should you thaw apple cake before frosting?
It’s best to freeze unfrosted apple cake layers, then thaw and frost the cake. Trying to frost frozen cake layers can tear the crumbly cake. Thawing first allows the moisture to evenly distribute itself again.
Can apple cake be frozen before baking?
No, do not freeze unbaked apple cake batter. The leavening ingredients will lose potency in the freezer, resulting in a dense cake. Only freeze-baked and cooled apple cakes
Should apple cake be wrapped in plastic or foil for freezing?
For best results, wrap the apple cake in plastic wrap first to prevent freezer burn, then wrap in foil for extra protection. The plastic directly touching the cake prevents it from drying out. Foil alone can cause freezer burn for months.
Can I freeze apple cake with cream cheese frosting?
Yes, apple cake with cream cheese frosting can be frozen, but the texture may change after thawing. The frosting may separate a bit or become grainy. It’s still safe to eat, but the texture changes.
How do you store thawed apple cakes?
Store thawed apple cake in the refrigerator, loosely covered in plastic wrap or foil. Consume leftover apple cake within 3–4 days for optimal freshness and texture. Avoid freezing again after the apple cake has been thawed.
What kind of apples work best for freezing in cakes?
Firm apples with a mildly tart flavor hold up best when frozen, like Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, Braeburn, or Mutsu apples. Soft apples like McIntosh break down more when frozen and thawed.
Can you freeze apple crumb cake?
Yes, apple crumb cake can be frozen successfully. Allow to fully cool first, then wrap tightly in plastic wrap and foil. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before serving for the best texture and flavor retention.
Is it better to freeze apple cake or apple pie?
Apple cakes freeze a bit better than apple pies overall. The crumbs in apple cake help absorb excess moisture better than pie crust. Freezing does not impact the texture of cakes as much. Still, you can freeze both apple cakes and pies.
Hi, I’m Julie, the passionate foodie and founder of Juliesfamilykitchen.com. I created this blog out of a drive to prove someone wrong, and then I realized how much I truly enjoy cooking and trying new recipes. In my free time, when I’m not running around after my kids or spending quality time with my partner, you can usually find me in the kitchen experimenting with new dishes.