Yes, you can! But don’t expect to be able to drink it. It will have a slight bitterness that you might not be used to. Having said that, there are plenty of uses for frozen espresso shots and, with a few tricks, it will freeze pretty well.
How To Freeze Espresso Shots
Before you get to freezing your espresso shots, it’s a good idea to understand how espresso shots will freeze. If you imagine a shot of espresso, you get a layer of golden caramel crema followed by the rich coffee. That crema is the result of oils being extracted from the beans and it will freeze and thaw at a different rate to the body of your coffee. This is what can cause your coffee to change in texture.
We can combat that by giving it a good stir to incorporate some of those oils into the coffee. It’s not a foolproof method but it certainly helps. So here goes:
- Once you have made your espresso shots, pour it into a jug to make the next step easier. Give it a good stir to mix the crema into the body of the coffee.
- Grab an ice cube tray, and fill each slot around 80% of the way to allow for some expansion when the coffee freezes.
- Wrap the tray in clingfilm and then place in the freezer until frozen solid.
- Pop the cubes out of the tray and into a bag to store for the long term before returning to the freezer.
How Long Can You Freeze Espresso Shots?
The longer you leave the espresso shots in the freezer, the greater the chance they will split and form ice crystals. You’ll also find that the longer you keep them in the freezer, the bitter they will become. That’s why it is a good idea to limit the time they spend in the freezer to just 2 months.
You Can Freeze Espresso Shots for Around 2 Months
How Do You Defrost Espresso Shots?
This depends on how you want to use the shots. If you are looking to make ice cream, syrups, sauces or cakes then you will want to thaw it. You can actually do this in a pan over a very low heat until the ice cube of espresso has completely melted. Once melted you can use it as you normally would use espresso shots.
If instead, you want to give your iced coffee or espresso martini an extra hit of coffee then there’s no need to defrost. Just grab a cube from the freezer and toss it into your drink.
Do Espresso Shots Freeze Well?
This is a question that comes solely down to how you plan on using them. If you were hoping to defrost an espresso shot to have it as a cold shot of coffee then think again. Texturally it will be slightly off, the flavour will be a little bitter and it won’t have that famous crema top.
If, however, you need shots of espresso to make cakes or want to give your iced latte an extra hit of coffee with espresso ice cubes then it will work perfectly well.
If you’re a coffee connoisseur then you will notice the difference. The balance will be off, there will be a slight bitterness and you’d be far better making a batch of strong cold brew coffee and using that instead. But if you just like a good cup of coffee and want to try freezing espresso shots then give it a go.
If you’ve still got questions about freezing espresso shots or coffee in general, then these may help:
Can You Freeze Cold Brew Coffee?
If you have the opportunity to make your own cold brew then this will actually freeze much better than espresso shots because very little oil is extracted from the beans. The hotter the extraction, the more oil you will get. Because, with cold brew, you don’t use any heat, there is a very low concentration of oil in the cold brew.
You can use the same method as above for freezing cold brew.
Should You Freeze Coffee Beans?
You may be surprised to hear that you can actually freeze coffee beans to preserve their flavour for the long term. Storing them in airtight containers for a few weeks will work fine but if you know you won’t use them all up within the space of a week then freezing them can help preserve them.