Why You Shouldn't Microwave Frozen Bread, According To Reddit

Freezing bread is a great way to keep it fresh until you need it again. Whether you simply have too much leftover, or are saving slices to make something specific, stashing it in the freezer will prevent it from going stale or getting moldy. However, freezing isn't the final step to ensuring delicious breaded bliss. It's also important to make sure that the bread is defrosted correctly when it finally comes time to take the loaf out to use it. Defrosting the bread incorrectly can lead to it developing a hard, unpleasant, and stale texture, which is exactly the outcome you were likely trying to avoid when you put it in the freezer in the first place.

Unfortunately, one unlucky Redditor recently learned this the hard way and took to the social media site to ask for some advice after struggling with defrosting their loaves. They asked their fellow Redditors, "How [do you] stop bread from becoming hard?" further explaining they were "freezing it and it still comes out like chips ... I microwave it when i take it out, is that a problem? Should i full seal it when it's in the freezer, or does that not matter?" Many of their fellow Redditors were quick to point out that the microwave method for defrosting was likely to blame.

Microwaving can cause the bread to thaw unevenly

"Don't microwave bread. It thaws very quickly when left out, or use a low setting on the toaster," one person on Reddit replied. According to food experts, they are correct. Frank Carollo, managing partner at Michigan-based Zingerman's Bakehouse, told My Recipes that one of the easiest ways to defrost bread is by simply letting it thaw out on its own at room temperature, then popping it into the oven for just 10-15 minutes once it's soft. Carollo also recommends swapping the bread from its original bag to a more air-tight plastic, or simply double bagging it, before putting it in the freezer to lock out excess moisture, explaining, "The fresher the bread is that goes into the freezer, the more moisture will remain in the bread when it comes out."

While it is possible to defrost bread in a microwave without it turning gross and hard, it is a little more difficult. Microwaving frozen bread will yield the best results if you defrost a few slices at a time, and it only needs to be nuked for no longer than 30 seconds, per Microwave Meal Prep. Trying to defrost the whole loaf at once is likely to make it thaw unevenly, leaving parts of it hard and unappetizing. So while microwaving might seem like the quickest and easiest option, if you are planning on eating a whole loaf of bread, simply letting it thaw on the counter is probably the way to go.