Will Freezing Canned Pineapple After Opening It Make It Last Longer?

While canned pineapple can remain shelf stable for quite some time, most products have a "best if used by" date printed on top, reflecting a deadline for the quality and fresh flavor consumers expect. Interestingly, canned foods are generally safe to eat well past the listed date if unopened. However, acidic canned foods — like pineapple — can only be pushed about one year beyond the listed "best by" date. Of course, opened cans are a different story. 

One of the mistakes people make with canned fruit that's been opened is keeping it in the fridge too long before freezing it. Once canned pineapple is opened, it lasts only five to seven days in the refrigerator. Therefore, if you don't plan on using your entire container of pineapple within a week, freezing the fruit is your best option for longevity.

While utilizing the best freezing techniques can prevent freezer burn and maximize the fruit's duration, pineapple that has remained frozen at 0 degrees Fahrenheit won't technically expire. However, the taste and texture may deteriorate over time. Although fresh pineapple that's been frozen will keep its quality for up to a year, canned pineapple that has been frozen after opening will taste best if consumed within a couple of months.

There's a method to freezing canned pineapple properly

Freezing canned pineapple makes it convenient for throwing together a recipe like pina colada popsicles or adding fruit to tangy snacks like cottage cheese and Greek yogurt. However, there are steps to follow during the freezing process to prevent your pineapple from crystalizing with ice or becoming a congealed block in your freezer.

Since pineapple is already an extremely water-rich fruit, you'll want to drain the excess liquid from the can before you put it in the freezer. To do this, you could put the pineapple chunks in a colander or on a baking rack on top of paper towels. Once your fruit is dry, separate your pineapple pieces onto a lined baking tray and place them in the freezer for a few hours or overnight. This will allow the outside of each chunk to flash freeze individually and prevent your pieces from sticking together once placed in the same freezer bag.

It's also important to seal your bag with as little air as possible or use an airtight container to prevent the outside of the pineapple chunks from drying out or getting icy freezer burns from the cold environment. Immediately freezing your canned pineapple instead of purchasing a pre-frozen version is even something you can do as a budget-friendly hack. Plus, the tropical canned fruit can be thawed in the fridge or cooked on the stovetop after freezing, making it perfect for all of your sweet and savory pineapple recipes.