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How to defrost bread: A step by step guide

How to defrost bread: A step by step guide

We’ve all had a frozen loaf of bread stuck in the back of the freezer at some point or other.

Where did it come from? Who put it there? Do you even remember buying it?

Many questions may go unanswered when removing the freezer-burnt loaf from among the ice, but the only important question is how do I bring this thing back to life?

You’d be surprised at how effectively you can revive a frozen loaf of bread if you use the right tools and techniques, but you need to have a game plan.

How does freezing effect bread?

Freezing bread is like pressing the pause button on the loaf’s lifespan.

When prepared properly for storage (which we’ll address next), the freezing process literally locks the natural moisture of the bread in place, meaning it cannot get stale or come under the threat of mold and bacteria.

The scientific term for this process is called starch crystallization. The living, breathing starch in the bread becomes locked into place and comes back to life when revived.

We know that freezing bread is reasonably effective, but what about the fridge?

While it doesn’t maintain freshness for quite as long, the fridge is a better option than a bread box or the countertop if your goal is to push back that expiration date.

Just remember that “quick bread” like banana, zucchini, and other dessert-type loaves are going to do better in the fridge than on the counter, especially in the summertime.

Wrap it right

In order to defrost bread quickly and effectively, you have to preserve it properly to begin with.

According to Women’s Health Mag, that means wrapping the loaf or individual slices the right way and at the right time.

Here are some guidelines to keep in mind:

  • Wrap bread at peak freshness. For most store-bought loaves that means at least a few days before the expiration date.
  • For bread fresh from the bakery or homemade loaves, wrap it up within the first couple of days to preserve flavor and texture.
  • Use parchment or wax paper to tightly wrap the loaf or the slice you want to save.
  • Add another layer of plastic wrap to ensure a tight seal.
  • After wrapping it twice, place the bread into an airtight container, either glass or plastic.
  • Once protected by these three layers, place the bread into the freezer.

Remember that bread will generally stay in the state at which it was first frozen, so the fresher the better. Don’t try this with stale bread, since the chemical structure has been compromised.

If your bread is even a day past due, it isn’t worth trying to save. Cut your losses and toss the entire loaf if it shows even a little bit of mold or gives off an odd smell.

Once safely in the freezer, the bread should lock in the level of moisture and flavor it had going in. Be aware that the quality does decline over time, but as long as you revive the bread within a few short months, you shouldn’t sacrifice much.

It may seem intuitive to wrap and freeze a fully-intact loaf, but according to Chatelaine, it’s almost always better to store by the slice.

The reasoning here is that it takes a lot longer to defrost and refresh an entire loaf of bread compared to individual slices, and when you need to access a piece for a quick breakfast or snack, you’ll be happy you put in the labor upfront.

If you want to freeze some store-bought slices, the knife work is already done, but it’s worth taking the time to cut up a loaf from the bakery for freezer storage as well.

These single slices must be wrapped individually but can be stored in the same plastic or glass container, as long as they don’t get stuck together.

The best way to revive frozen bread

Now that you know how to properly store bread in the freezer, it’s time to learn how to bring it back to life!

The folks over at Cook’s Illustrated did the legwork for us and found out that simply letting bread thaw at room temperature is not the best route.

They found that by letting the bread sit out for too long actually turned it stale rather quickly, especially when covered in the excess moisture from the freezer.

Instead, they discovered that microwaving the slices on an uncovered plate for 15 to 25 seconds caused the water molecules to break down crystallized starches and produce soft, warm bread as a result.

We understand that there’s some skepticism in the food scene about microwaves, but if it works, it works! Revitalized bread is well worth those 30 seconds of patience.

The experts at Epicurious also stated that the oven provides a better environment to revive an entire loaf, since it may not fit in the microwave.

Fire the oven up to 325, place the frozen loaf on a tray, and let it come back to life over the course of 20 to 30 minutes.

You may have to ballpark the exact amount of time necessary, but around the 20-minute mark feel free to chop off a slice and see if it needs more time. This won’t affect the overall process.

If you have a toaster oven that fits a couple of slices, that may be your best bet!

Just set the little machine at the ideal temp and let those slices return to form while you prepare a smoothie or enjoy your pour-over coffee ritual.

Once that bread has reached the right temperature and is looking golden brown, it’s your call whether you want to load it up with tons of awesome ingredients or just play it cool with a little pad of butter. The only thing that counts is that you enjoy the crunch!

Ideal bread for freezing

Like the pros pointed out earlier, most bread acts the same once it hits the freezer, even though they have slightly different ingredients and preparations.

The question that many folks ask themselves nowadays has to do with the healthiness of their bread habits.

Toast may be a standard of western cuisine, but is it really our best bet for health and longevity? Recent research suggests that normal bread just doesn’t cooperate well with our bodies.

Whether it’s the blood sugar spikes from simple carbs, the harsh effects of gluten on the gut, or the lack of vital nutrients we need to stay balanced, bread falls short in many key categories.

See, even the so-called “healthy bread” at the grocery store is absolutely loaded with carbohydrates and doesn’t have the fiber, protein or fat we need to start the day.

For all these reasons, we made it our mission a few years back to create the ultimate superfood bread, and we believed we struck gold with the creation of Keto Kubes.

Not only does this bread look, feel, and taste like a high-quality wholesome sourdough, it has a nutritional profile that tops everything else on the market.

So instead of getting a quick spike of energy in the morning and dealing with a lunchtime crash, you can enjoy a slow, steady release of quality nutrition throughout the whole day and stay even-keeled.

And because this bread is so versatile, you can use it to pack a small sandwich for an afternoon snack or pair it with a hearty soup for a comfort-food evening meal.

As for storage, this bread has a fantastic shelf life. Although you shouldn’t keep it out in the open for more than three days, it lasts for a month in the fridge.

Plus, you can easily bring it back to life after freezing it for months at a time. Just follow the protocol we discussed here!

We do recommend you freeze the loaves whole if possible, but if you have questions, definitely consult the FAQ.

Once you get going, you’ll want to enjoy our bread every day, which is why we created a direct delivery system that ensures you never run out.

Share it with friends, pack lunches for family members, or keep it all to yourself. We won’t blame you if you choose that last option.


Storing and reviving bread from the freezer is easier than you might have thought!

You just need to pick a bread that fits your lifestyle and adds to your health instead of slowing you down.

Folks all over the country are flexing their culinary muscle with inventive new creations, with our Superfood bread featured center-stage.

From morning toast to hearty lunchtime sandwiches and delicious dinners, there’s nothing you can’t accomplish with this bread. And you can do it all guilt-free!

Make sure you follow us on social media to see how the Uprising Army is making the most of these magical loaves and join the revolution by signing up for the email newsletter today.


Cooks Illustrated


Women’s Health Mag




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