As a new mom, you’re constantly inundated with advice from well-meaning family and friends. You’re also learning lots of new things (and Googling even more). So it’s no surprise that you may be wondering if you can freeze breast milk after it’s been refrigerated.
The answer is maybe. It all depends on how long the milk has been sitting in the fridge. Read on to find out more about freezing breast milk and what factors you should consider before doing so.
Yes, you can freeze breast milk after it has been refrigerated. The impact on taste and texture will be minimal, and it will last for up to two months in the freezer.
When you freeze fresh breast milk, the water in the milk will form ice crystals. These ice crystals can damage the cell membranes in the milk, which can affect both the taste and texture of the milk. However, this damage is minimal if you only freeze the milk for a short period of time (up to two months). If you freeze the milk for longer than two months, there could be more significant damage to the cell membranes, which could affect both the taste and texture of the milk.
Can You Freeze Breast Milk After It’s Been Refrigerated?
Yes, you can freeze breast milk after it has been refrigerated. The freezing process does not have a significant impact on the milk’s taste or texture. However, frozen breast milk will not last as long as fresh breast milk.
How To Freeze Breast Milk After It’s Been Refrigerated?
If you have extra breast milk after your baby has eaten, you can freeze it for later use. The milk will keep in the freezer for up to three months. Here are the steps to freezing breast milk after it has been refrigerated:
1. Pour the milk into a storage bag or container. Make sure to label the bag with the date and time that the milk was expressed.
2. Place the bag or container in the freezer.
3. Wait until the milk is frozen solid before placing it in the refrigerator or deep freezer. This usually takes about 24 hours.
4. Once the milk is frozen, you can thaw it by placing it in the refrigerator overnight or by using a microwave-safe container and defrosting it on low power for a few minutes.
Precautions to Take When Freezing Breast Milk After It’s Been Refrigerated
When you freeze breast milk after it has been refrigerated, you need to take some extra precautions. The milk may have already been exposed to bacteria, so freezing it will not kill all of the bacteria. To minimize the risk of your baby getting sick, follow these steps:
1. Make sure that the milk is completely thawed before giving it to your baby. Do not give your baby frozen milk that has not been thawed properly:
2. Check the temperature of the milk before giving it to your baby. It should be body temperature, or just a little bit below body temperature:
3. Discard any milk that has been frozen for more than 3 months.
How To Thaw Frozen Breast Milk After It’s Been Refrigerated
1. Place the frozen container of breast milk in the refrigerator to thaw for 12 to 24 hours.
2. Pour the breast milk into a clean bottle or container and refrigerate it again until you are ready to use it.
3. If you are using a microwave oven to defrost the breast milk, place it in a microwavable safe container and defrost it on low power for 30 seconds. Stir well, then continue to defrost at 5-10 second intervals, stirring between each interval, until the milk is thawed.
4. If you are using hot water to defrost the breast milk, place the frozen container of breast milk in a pot of hot water and let it sit for about
How Long Does Breast Milk After It’s Been Refrigerated Last (Stays Fresh) Outside at Room Temperature?
The general rule is that breast milk can be stored in a fridge for up to five days, and in a freezer for six to 12 months.
If you’re going to freeze it, label it with the date on which you froze it, and make sure to thaw it gradually in the fridge so that the temperature of the milk doesn’t go above 40 degrees F. You can also heat frozen breast milk by placing it in a pot of warm water until it reaches room temperature; NEVER place frozen breast milk in a microwave.
How Long Does Breast Milk After It’s Been Refrigerated Last (Stays Fresh) in the Fridge?
Here are the detailed guidelines from La Leche League International:
“Mothers who store breast milk in a refrigerator should use it within four days. If mothers want to store breast milk longer than four days, they can freeze it. When stored in the freezer, breast milk will be safe to use for up to six months. After being frozen, thawed breast milk should be used within 24 hours.”
It is important to note that freezing and then thawing will change the composition of breast milk somewhat. However, breastfeeding experts still consider frozen and thawed breast milk to be safe for baby.”
So you should technically still be able to drink it after 4 days but it might not taste as good. I
How To Use Up Extra/Leftover Breast Milk After It’s Been Refrigerated?
-Feed it to your baby or toddler. Breast milk is packed with nutrients and antibodies that can help keep them healthy.
-Freeze it in ice cube trays and use it for later. Once frozen, pop the cubes into a labeled freezer bag for long-term storage.
-Donate it to a local breastfeeding support group or milk bank.
-Share it with another nursing mom who may be struggling to produce enough milk on her own.
-Use it in smoothies, coffee, oatmeal, soup, or any other recipe that calls for milk.