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How do you freeze cake to keep it moist and delicious?

Freezing cake is a great way to save leftover cake for later. With proper freezing and thawing, you can enjoy slices of cake that taste just as fresh and moist as the day they were baked. The key is to prevent the cake from getting dried out or absorbing freezer odors while frozen. Follow these tips for freezing cake perfectly every time.

Should You Freeze Cake?

Most cakes freeze well and can be stored in the freezer for 2-3 months. Unfrosted cakes usually freeze better than frosted cakes. The frosting can become soggy or weep upon thawing. However, you can freeze both frosted and unfrosted cakes as long as you take the necessary precautions.

Cakes with higher fat and moisture contents tend to freeze especially well. Some examples include:

  • Pound cake
  • Carrot cake
  • Red velvet cake
  • Yellow cake
  • White cake
  • Fruit cake

Cakes that don’t freeze as well include angel food cake and chiffon cake since they are too airy and delicate. Avoid freezing whipped cream frostings because they will deflate upon thawing.

How to Freeze Unfrosted Cakes

Follow these steps to properly freeze an unfrosted cake:

  1. Allow the cake to cool completely first. Freezing a warm cake may cause condensation which can make the cake soggy.
  2. Wrap the cake tightly in plastic wrap, freezer paper, or aluminum foil. Make sure the wrap clings tightly to the surface of the cake.
  3. Place the wrapped cake into a freezer bag or airtight container. Squeeze out excess air before sealing.
  4. Label the package with the contents and freeze-by date.
  5. Freeze for up to 2-3 months at 0°F or below.
  6. Avoid freezing cake slices or smaller pieces which freeze faster but also tend to dry out quicker.

How to Freeze Frosted Cakes

Freezing a frosted cake requires a few additional steps:

  1. Again, let the cake cool fully first.
  2. Only freeze cakes with a frosting that freezes well like buttercream, cream cheese, fudge, or ganache. Avoid whipped cream.
  3. Wrap unfrosted cake in plastic wrap as described above.
  4. Freeze the wrapped cake for about 1 hour just until firm.
  5. Remove cake from freezer, unwrap, and frost the cake.
  6. Refreeze the frosted cake uncovered until the frosting hardens, about 30 minutes.
  7. Rewrap the frozen cake in plastic wrap or foil. Return to freezer.
  8. For better results, freeze frosted cake no more than 1-2 months.

How to Thaw Frozen Cakes

Thaw frozen cakes properly to prevent condensation or sogginess:

  • Thaw overnight in the refrigerator. This slowly thaws the cake from the outside in.
  • Let the cake finish thawing at room temperature for 1-2 hours.
  • Never thaw cake on the counter or at room temperature only. This causes moisture condensation.
  • Unwrap cake once thawed. The plastic wrap prevents frosting from drying out.
  • Enjoy cake within 3-5 days of thawing for best quality.

Tips for Freezing Cake

Follow these tips for the best frozen cake results:

  • Double wrap cakes in plastic wrap and foil.
  • Squeeze out air before sealing storage containers.
  • Cool cakes completely before freezing.
  • Label frozen cakes with type and date.
  • Use freezer bags to freeze cake slices individually.
  • Glaze or frost cakes after freezing.
  • Thaw cakes slowly in the fridge overnight.
  • Avoid refreezing thawed cakes again.

Storing Thawed Cake

Properly store thawed cakes in the fridge or at room temperature:

  • Keep thawed cakes refrigerated if not serving immediately.
  • Cover cake with plastic wrap or a cake dome to prevent drying out.
  • Thawed, unfrosted cake keeps 3-4 days refrigerated.
  • Frosted cakes keep 2-3 days refrigerated.
  • Let refrigerated cake come to room temp before serving.
  • Thawed cake can be kept at room temp no more than 2 days.

Freezing Different Cake Varieties

Certain types of cake require slightly different freezing methods. Here are tips for popular cake varieties:


  • Freeze cheesecake in the pan or on a plate wrapped in plastic wrap.
  • Thaw overnight in the fridge still in the pan.
  • Run a knife along the edge before removing from the pan.

Pound Cake

  • Pound cake’s dense crumb stays fresh when frozen.
  • Wrap squares of pound cake individually in plastic wrap.
  • Thaw on the counter or overnight in the fridge.

Fruit Cake

  • Fruit cake improves in texture and flavor when frozen.
  • Wrap well in foil and freeze up to 6 months.
  • Thaw overnight in the fridge before serving.

Angel Food Cake

  • Angel food cake gets dried out in the freezer.
  • Freeze only if glazing or frosting after thawing.
  • Thaw overnight in the fridge.

Wedding Cake

  • Freeze unfrosted tiers separately.
  • Thaw tiers overnight in the fridge.
  • Frost just before assembling and serving.

Using Frozen Cakes

Thawed, frozen cakes can be used in all the same ways as fresh cakes. Here are some ideas:

  • Layer thawed cake rounds with frosting for a layer cake.
  • Cube and use as a trifle base.
  • Crumble into crumbs for cake pops.
  • Cut into pieces and use as cake push pops.
  • Blend into cake batter for cupcakes or sheet cakes.
  • Use as a base for cake parfaits layered with whipped cream and berries.

Troubleshooting Freezing Cake

Problem Solution
Cake dries out Double wrap in plastic wrap next time. Thaw overnight in the fridge.
Frosting becomes runny Don’t use whipped cream frosting. Freeze frosting briefly before frosting cake.
Condensation on surface Let cake cool completely before freezing. Thaw overnight in fridge.
Freezer burn Use air-tight freezer packaging. Don’t freeze too long.
Absorb freezer odors Use plastic wrap or foil to prevent odors. Avoid opening freezer frequently.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does cake last in the freezer?

Properly frozen cake will last 2-3 months in the freezer before quality starts to decline. Cheesecake and fruitcake can often last 4-6 months.

Can you freeze cake batter?

Yes, cake batter can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before baking normally. Add a couple extra minutes to the bake time.

Can you freeze whipped cream frosting?

No, avoid freezing whipped cream frostings because they will deflate and weep. Use buttercream or cream cheese frosting instead.

What happens if you freeze cake without wrapping?

An unwrapped cake will dry out quickly in the freezer. Always wrap cake well in plastic wrap or foil before freezing.

Can you freeze fondant-covered cake?

It’s best not to freeze fondant-covered cakes. The fondant becomes sticky and damages easily. Leave fondant off until ready to serve.


Freezing cake at home is simple with the proper method. Allow cake to cool fully, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and foil, label, and freeze up to 2-3 months. Thaw slowly in the fridge overnight before serving. Following these instructions for both frosted and unfrosted cakes will result in a cake that stays fresh-tasting and moist. Use within a few days of thawing for best quality.