In my kitchen a lot of pies are baked and that inevitably leads to leftovers. Whether I am baking for the family or for a special occasion or holiday know how to freeze a cherry pie has saved me multiple times.
Being able to bake your cherry pie ahead of time leads to saved time and less running around (and if you’re busy like me that is why this method is so special).
So can you freeze cherry pie?
Yes you can! This quick and easy technique is the best I have seen.
I’ve looked around the internet and sadly some of the methods being spread just plain don’t work. So I will let you know the best way to freeze your cherry pie while still maintaining it’s flavor and texture.
That means you can bake a batch of pies when you have time and freeze them until that big family dinner or party. And with all that goes into hosting a large gathering, this is a huge time saver and stress relief.
So if you like to bake cherry pies like me and my family then bookmark this article or pin it to Pinterest because it will save you tons of time and hassle over the years.
Why Freezing Your Cherry Pie Is Smart
I don’t know about you but when it’s time to bake a cherry pie it’s always a busy time. And even though I absolutely love baking, there is only so much time in the day.
And knowing how to properly freeze your pies means you can do it a head of time when it’s not so hectic. That alone will free up so much more time for all those other tasks we have to accomplish.
I will bust out my homemade cherry pies anytime of the year but most of the time I am making them for family dinners around the holidays or for summer picnics with friends. That means I have a ton of other dishes to prepare so anytime I can prebake my pies I do it.
You should too!
There are a couple ways you can go about storing your pies in the freezer. I often bake a big batch of pies at once and freeze the cooked pies in my large chest freezer.
You can also freeze the prepared pie components separately allowing you the freedom of just throwing them together as needed. That means freezing crusts and filling separately. While I don’t do this method often it is a great way to go if you want to freeze different types of pies all at once.
Alright, now let’s get to the foolproof cherry pie freezing step by step guide!
Step By Step Guide To Freezing Cherry Pies
I promised you these methods are easy and it’s time to prove it! I’ll actually break down how to freeze all types of cherry pies and fillings. That way all the guesswork is removed. So scroll to whatever type (or stage) of cherry pie you want to freeze for the specific step by step instructions.
How To Freeze Baked Cherry Pie
This is the way I freeze almost all of my cherry pies. It is ridiculously easy (some people overcomplicate things but I won’t!) and quick. This is the way I recommend doing it if you have the freezer space.
Follow these steps and your pie will come out the freezer perfect and delicious every time.
- Once baked, allow your pie to completely cool.
- If not baked in one, transfer pie to a freezer safe dish. (I use these pie pans and they are amazing and freezer safe).
- Wrap the entire pie and container in plastic wrap. You can use aluminum foil but I have the best results when using plastic wrap.
- Place your wrapped pie into a large freezer safe bag and close. Be careful to remove as much air as possible. A vacuum sealer also works wonderfully.
- Place pies in the back of your freezer. If freezing multiple pies you can stack them but place a piece of cardboard between each pie to prevent crushing your crusts.
Some tips on freezing baked cherry pies.
I do not use pie pans with lids but they work very well for freezing so use them if you have them.
I use a chest freezer for my pies and have found the max I can stack on top of each other is four pies. More than that and you will get some crunched up crusts.
Once in the freezer make sure your temps stay low to avoid freezer burn.
Follow these steps and your pies will stay good for up to six months!
Freezing Unbaked Cherry Pies
Once in a while I will freeze an unbaked cherry pie. But it’s usually when I don’t have enough time to bake it. But I try not to do that because there are a couple added preparation steps when freezing an unbaked cherry pie. Read on for the full instructions so you don’t miss a step!
- Add one tablespoon of cornstarch more than your pie filling recipe calls for. If using a premade cherry pie filling, still add one tablespoon cornstarch. All-purpose flour can also be used in the same amount.
- Add a dusting of cornstarch to your formed pie crust before adding filling.
- Add pie filling to crust.
- Make sure pie is in a freezer safe pan. Wrap in completely in plastic wrap. Aluminum foil can also be used.
- Place wrapped pie in a large freezer safe bag and seal being careful to remove all excess air. A vacuum sealer can also be used.
- Place pies in freezer. You can stack them the same way you would a baked cherry pie.
Unbaked cherry pies can be stored in the freezer for up to four months. Once ready to use simply follow the steps toward the bottom of this article.
How To Freeze Cherry Pie Filling
I have been asked numerous time if you can freeze cherry pie filling and I am pleased to let you know that yes you can!
This is actually a great way to speed up the pie making process while still getting a great tasting crust. The best way to use this method is to prepare and freeze your cherry pie filling but preparing your crust fresh when it’s pie making time.
While you can freeze your crust separately ahead of time, if you do that you might as well freeze the pie crust with the filling in it.
So for this method we will go over how to freeze just your pie filling.
- Just like the method above, the first step is adding an extra tablespoon of cornstarch or all-purpose flour to your filling. This means one more Tbs. than your recipe calls for. If using a ready made pie filling, still add a Tbs. of cornstarch before moving on to the next step.
- Cook your filling per your recipes instruction and then allow it to cool completely.
- Put your cooled filling into a freezer safe bag and seal it. Be sure to remove all excess air. A vacuum sealer can also be used.
- Place in the freezer. Pie filling can be stored frozen for up to four months.
I should note that for all of these freezing methods, you should label your pies with the date frozen so you can be sure to use them up within the timeframe they stay good at.
How To Thaw Frozen Cherry Pies
The awesome part of defrosting a cherry pie is that no matter what stage you froze your pie at you can use this simple thawing technique! To thaw your cherry pie just follow these simple steps.
- Place your frozen pie or pie filling in your refrigerator and leave it for one day. This does require a bit of patience but with proper planning it’s no problem.
- Now simply remove your pie from the freezer bag and plastic wrap.
- To heat a pie you already baked, pop it an oven preheated to 350 degrees. Check every few minutes. Once filling is bubbling it is ready to remove from the oven.
- For an unbaked pie, simply follow your original recipes baking time.
So if you are in a hurry, you can defrost your cherry pie in the oven. This can cause a bit of drying out but if you have no time to do it the proper way just place the unwrapped pie in the oven at 300 degrees for about one hour.
Frozen Cherry Pie Tips
Cherry pies are easy to freeze and thaw but if you don’t follow these steps you risk drying out your pie. And that is a no go in my kitchen. So just give yourself enough time to do it right. And just to make sure your pies freeze well, here are a few more tips to help you keep your pies perfectly delicious.
Wrap Them Right
Don’t rush the wrapping process. Your cherry pies need to be thoroughly sealed and both wrapping in plastic wrap and placing in a freezer bag will ensure they don’t get freezer burned.
Use quality materials and take care that as much excess air is removed as possible before placing them in the freezer.
Use A Chest Freezer If You Have One
Maintaining cold freezer temperatures is also imperative to your pies staying good while frozen. A deep freezer is the best option for long term storage of any frozen food, including cherry pies.
If you have a chest freezer, use it! If you do not then be sure to put your pies in the back of your freezer and only open the door when absolutely necessary.
Check Your Frozen Pie Before Eating
While your pie will last for months if you follow these steps, there is always the chance that a pie will go bad. This can be for any number of reasons, including poor quality ingredients, freezer not staying cold, improper sealing of pies and more.
So before eating your pie, always check for freezer burn or spoilage. If your pie shows any of these signs do not consumer it.
Baked Pies With Cornstarch Filling Should Not Be Frozen
I won’t get into the chemistry here, but a baked pie being frozen should not have cornstarch in the filling. It will not reheat properly and result in a ruined pie. While cornstarch is fine frozen when it hasn’t been baked yet, that just isn’t the case when it comes to reheating a cornstarch based pie filling.
Instead of using cornstarch as a filling thickener, when planning to freeze a baked pie go with tapioca, all-purpose flour, or arrowroot starch instead.
Check Your Dates
You should always label your frozen cherry pies with the date you prepared them. This will allow you to easily make sure you use them within the 3-6 month safe freezing period.
If you freeze pies frequently, you should rotate your oldest pies to the front to make sure you use them before going bad.
Don’t Use Gelatin In Your Filling
Just like with cornstarch, gelatin doesn’t play nice with reheating. So when making a cherry pie you intend to freeze, leave out the gelatin. It will get runny and gooey when reheated and you won’t enjoy the texture.
As you can see, the process for freezing cherry pie is simple and quick. The key is to follow the steps exactly and your pies will keep for months and come out tasting delicious. Let me know in the comments how this technique worked out for you!