Lasagna is pretty easy to make for a group, and it’s also a familiar family-style dish. But if you have some leftovers that need to go in the freezer a second time so they don’t spoil, can you refreeze lasagna?
It is generally safe to refreeze lasagna. Just use some common sense to maintain food safety, and you can put warm or room temperature lasagna right into the freezer and safely reheat it to eat in the future.
Before you try to refreeze a lasagna, let’s make sure you know what to do so that it’s refrozen and stored safely. You can also take steps to make sure it lasts while frozen and delivers a quality meal when you decide to reheat it. Just follow a few simple rules for the best and tastiest results.
Refreezing Your Lasagna – How To Do It
When you find some lasagna in your freezer and reheat it, you can also refreeze the leftovers. But, once it’s reached room temperature, you should make sure to heat it to full temperature again to make sure to kill off any bacteria.
So, if you reheated an aluminum pan or baking dish of lasagna, and ate half of it, make sure to bring the leftover half of the tray all the way up to full temperature in the oven again before you try to freeze it. This will ensure that you’ve done all you can to minimize the chances of foodborne illness and also to minimize the growth of ice crystals.
Once it’s cool enough to handle and most of the moisture has steamed off, move the leftover lasagna into a clean container. If the tomato sauce is still so hot you can’t touch it, let it cool off more. When the unused portion of your leftover lasagna is cool enough to work with, consider cutting it into individual portions.
This will make it easier to freeze quickly and is a good food safety measure.
Then, cover it tightly with plastic wrap, and finally add the lid to the container. Airtight containers are best because they will create a double barrier against freezer burn. Or, you could put the whole unused portion of lasagna into a couple of heavy-duty freezer bags if you don’t have metal pans or a Pyrex dish.
Put the warm lasagna into the coldest part of the freezer, and consider setting it onto another cold item to increase the speed with which the lasagna freezes. That will help keep it safe to eat by accelerating the pace of freezing, minimizing the risk that the lasagna grows bacteria or spoils.
Reheating Frozen Lasagna
At some point, you’re going to try and eat the lasagna in your freezer. No matter how old it is, if you stored it safely, it will still be edible. But if it has ever melted, been stored after sitting at room temperature, or been contaminated by bacteria or other pathogens that cause illnesses, it’s not safe to eat.
To reheat your frozen lasagna, let it sit out on a rack at room temperature for at least one hour. This will allow the pasta, cheese, and other ingredients enough time to thaw and release some of their water. But, it’s not so long that all of the water will drip away and dry out the lasagna. Plus, it’s not enough time to compromise the integrity of the product.
To keep the lasagna moist, leave the plastic wrap on until the last minute. It’s a good idea to set your oven to a moderate temperature and hold it there while the frozen lasagna thaws out.
Consider setting the rack over a rimmed baking sheet or glass dish so the melting water doesn’t make a mess.
Since the lasagna has already been cooked once, you would rather apply minimal heat for a longer period than blasting it with heat and overcooking the outside while the middle remains half-frozen. Use additional foil to protect the outside as needed. Make sure to remove the plastic lid before you place the lasagna in the oven.
You can use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature and see when the middle of the lasagna indicates it’s ready to eat. Never eat uncooked lasagna, or you might get sick.
For an added tip, if the top of the lasagna is already a bit crispy, consider flipping the lasagna over to reveal the bottom. It might be soggy and a little soft from the initial cook and from freezing and thawing out.
If you flip it, this will allow the already crispy part to stay protected while the new top side cooks up a bit. Towards the end of your reheat, open the foil to crisp the top to your preference.
Some questions about freezing lasagna come up all the time.
How many times can you freeze lasagna?
Refreeze lasagna as many times as you want. But, each freeze and thaw cycle damages the texture of the ground beef, noodles, and sauce. So it’s a good idea to store single portions and only heat up what you need.
Can I refreeze partially thawed lasagna?
You can, but each time it thaws out (even partially), your lasagna’s quality will deteriorate from moisture loss.
Can you refreeze pasta sheets?
This is not a good idea unless you have a blast chiller that can freeze the pasta instantly. Home freezers don’t have the cooling power to do so, and that usually means that the water crystals produced by the freezing process will ruin the texture of the pasta.