Can You Freeze Key Lime Pie? | Homemade vs. Store-Bought Options

Key lime pie is a classic summer dessert made with a graham cracker crust, key lime juice, lime zest, and a creamy filling. Key lime pie is refreshing and bursts with explosive flavors.

It is a great not-too-sweet dessert. The best part about key lime pie is that you can freeze it in August to eat in December. My family loves to freeze key lime pie to enjoy later as part of our holiday feast.

It’s always a great palate cleanser after the hearty food of winter. Then again, sometimes you’re just craving key lime pie but can’t eat a whole one. Freezing key lime pie and thawing to be enjoyed later is easy and tastes delicious.

Generally speaking, it is ok to freeze your key lime pie. However, you’ll need to take special care preparing your key lime pie for freezing. It’s especially important to do an initial freeze of the pie before you package and store it away.

Frozen key lime pie will be ok to thaw and eat for 1 to 3 months after its freeze date. Be sure to freeze in an airtight container. Most key lime pie toppings, like whipped cream, can be frozen.

But, freezing key lime pie with a meringue topping is not a good idea. 

How Long Is Key Lime Pie Good For In The Refrigerator?

Both store bought and homemade key lime pies keep well in the refrigerator.  They taste the best within 2 to 3 days. After 3 days that lively lime flavor begins to diminish considerably.

When key lime pie is left out at room temperature, there is a danger for harmful bacteria to begin forming after only 2 hours. It’s best to leave key lime pie refrigerated until ready to serve.

If it’s been out on the counter for more than 2 hours, you should throw any remaining key lime pie away, don’t try to freeze this.  However, if you’re pie has been sufficiently refrigerated for a day or two and you want to save it long term, then freezing key lime pie is a smart choice.

Why Do You Freeze Key Lime Pie?

Everyone chooses to freeze key lime pie for different reasons. Companies who sell key lime pies, for instance, often freeze their pies to extend shelf life. In fact, freezing is an excellent way to make your key lime pie last 10x longer.

This is why many individuals choose to freeze their leftovers and why businesses opt to sell key lime pie frozen. It is an effective way to preserve without negatively affecting taste.

How Long Can You Freeze Key Lime Pie?

Conservative estimates for how long key lime pie stays good are in the 1 to 3-month range. However, this does not mean you can’t eat key lime pie that has been frozen for longer. It is absolutely possible to enjoy key lime pie which has been frozen for a year or more.

As long as your freezer’s temperature stays consistent (i.e. no power outages), frozen key lime pie will be safe to eat indefinitely. Preserving consistency and flavor largely depends on your packaging technique.

How To Properly Freeze Key Lime Pie?

Initial Freeze

Once you’ve decided to freeze your key lime. Now what? First, you’ll need to make sure that your key lime pie dish is freezer safe. Some types of glass are prone to cracking when in extreme temperatures.

For this job, most plastic is good. Clear out your freezer so that the key lime pie has its own space. You want the pie to be exposed on all sides to the cold. Do not cover your key lime pie.

How Long to Freeze Key Lime Pie?

The initial freeze of a key lime pie should take about 2 hours at most.

Wrap

After your initial freeze, you will need to take your key lime pie out of the freezer and begin the packing phase. First, it should be frozen solid so you can take it out of whatever dish it was freezing in. Wrap your frozen key lime pie with freezer paper or aluminum foil.

Put in Freezer Bag

After your frozen key lime pie has been wrapped, place it in a freezer bag labeled with its contents and date.

Freeze

Once properly packaged, you can put your frozen key lime pie back in the freezer and thaw when you’re ready to enjoy it again.

Thaw

When you’re ready to return your key lime pie to its original state, first take your portions out of the freezer. Place your frozen key lime pie in the refrigerator overnight. By the morning, or roughly 12 hours later, it should be ready to eat.

Freezing Key Lime Pie Ingredients & Recipes

Can You Freeze A Pie With Whipped Cream?

Sure, you can! However, be very cautious when doing so because sometimes whipped cream toppings can begin to separate when they are frozen on the pie. If frozen by itself, whipped cream freezes wonderfully.

So, it’s best to freeze your whipped cream in a separate container from your pie. Either you can freeze portions of whipped cream or you can freeze batches, totally up to you.

Can You Freeze Key Lime Pie With Meringue?

Meringue is a cousin to whipped cream. It is made by vigorously whipping eggs and sugar together. It creates a sweet, fluffy texture when baked. Meringue is a common ingredient of key lime pie.

Key lime pie with meringue is one thing you want to avoid freezing. Because meringue is made with eggs, it takes on a diminished flavor and spongey texture when thawed from frozen.

You can always remove your meringue topping, freeze the key lime pie alone, and whip up a fresh meringue topping when you thaw your pie.

Can You Freeze Key Lime Pie With Condensed Milk?

Yes, you can freeze a key lime pie with condensed milk. Condensed milk freezes fairly well because it has a high sugar content that keeps the liquid and fat from separating. It’s important to note that condensed milk in desserts should only be frozen and thawed once.

Continuously thawing and refreezing can create undesirable flavors and textures.

Side note, you can also freeze leftover condensed milk after making a recipe as well. However, never try to freeze condensed milk in the unopened, or opened, tin that it came in. Freezing condensed milk in its can might trigger an eruption in your freezer.

Freezing condensed milk in an airtight container extends its shelf life to up to 3 months.

Can You Freeze Key Lime Juice?

You can freeze key lime juice. It’s most effective to freeze key lime juice in ice cube trays. Simply pour your left-over juice into the tray and freeze. Once frozen solid, transfer your key lime juice cubes to a plastic freezer safe bag.

Remove any residual air and pop it into the freezer. Frozen key lime juice can last 3 to 4 months. For an added bonus, lime zest can also be frozen and retains its flavor for up to 3 months.

Freezing Store Bought Key Lime Pie

Can You Freeze Costco Key Lime Pie?

Costco key lime pie is amazing! If you haven’t tried it, this is your encouragement to do so. Costco key lime pie will last 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator. But this key lime pie weighs 4.25 lbs.

If you and your family can’t eat this gigantic key lime pie in 4 days, feel free to freeze leftovers. Follow our guide above to learn the best practices to use when freezing key lime pie.

Frozen Costco key lime pie will retain its original flavor for up to 2 months after freezing as long as it’s been packaged and stored properly. Be sure to at least transfer your key lime pie out of its original container when freezing it.

Can You Freeze Publix Key Lime Pie?

You can definitely freeze Publix key lime pie. Their signature key lime pie topping freezes well also.

Fun fact: Publix began making their signature key lime pie recipe in 1957. To this day, the key lime pie recipe has never changed. Key lime pie continues to be a top selling bakery item at Publix.

Final Thoughts

Freezing key lime pie is common, easy, and worth it. As summer winds down, make a batch of key lime pies. Freeze in August to enjoy around December for a refreshing holiday dessert.

Be sure to do an uncovered initial freeze of your key lime pie so that it freezes evenly. Once completed, package your frozen key lime pie in an airtight container, label, and freeze.

Frozen key lime pie keeps its flavor and consistency for up to 3 months. After 3 months, your frozen key lime pie is safe to eat but may not taste as delicious. From key lime juice to whipped cream, you can freeze most key lime pie toppings and ingredients.

You should avoid freezing meringue toppings, especially those that are homemade.

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