Has anyone tried freezing or refridgerating tea they want to save?

So has anyone ever tried to freeze or fridge tea they want to last longer? Does it work with flavored tea? Does it work with tea with coconut? I’m especially thinking of a particular blend with coconut I would like to try to preserve longer. I’m wondering if anyone else has tried this. Thanks!

16 Replies
AllanK said

Unless your tea is vacuum sealed you will likely end up with condensation on your tea. If it is vacuum sealed let it come to room temp before you open it.

mrmopar said

I concur. Vacuum and then let come to temp before opening. Coconut does freeze pretty well is vacuumed. I do it with flakes that we use during the holidays. Seems fine after sealing up.

Ah, yeah, that would make sense. SO if I HAD a food vacuum sealer… how would it work if I just vacuum sealed the original tea packaging with new vacuum sealed packaging on the outside of it?

AllanK said

I have heard that home grade vacuum sealers are not good enough, don’t make a perfect seal and that they bruise the tea.

But what if I’m not worried about it crushing? Like it’s my favorite rooibos blend? Still not worth it because I won’t be able to be sure if it’s a good enough vacuum sealer? Not like I’m running out to buy a vacuum sealer or anything. haha.

Tea-sipper you just have to check that there is no air coming into the pack. The issue with green tea as far I heard is that it takes up the tastes of the other food. So you really have to lock it up without any passage of air. Then you are fine – as you Don’t mind that the tea might break a bit.

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LuckyMe said

Yes, I do it all the time with green tea. I’ll portion it into 25g foil pouches and allow it to come to room temperature for 24 hours before opening. I keep in the coldest part of the fridge where it’s just a couple of degrees above freezing.

Unless we’re talking green oolongs, I don’t think vacuum sealing is necessary. It’s more hassle than its worth and the consumer grade stuff like FoodSaver can crush tea leaves. What’s more, vacuum sealing doesn’t completely remove all of the air and so you’ll need oxygen absorber packets to completely make them airtight.

Interesting, interesting…

Teasenz said

Completely agree. It’s pretty much common practice in China to vacuum seal light oolongs. For normal green teas, just sealing is ok.

Ubacat said

I vacuumed sealed but I am new to this. I should have put in smaller amounts too like the 25g but I already had lots to label because I had plenty of green tea.

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Ubacat said

I just starting doing that this year. I bought these bags from YS:

I used my food sealer to get most of the air out and have them stored in the wine cooler. I wouldn’t store in a refrigerator with food because of smell transference. I’ve heard you need to leave the package out for a full day before opening to avoid condensation.

For labels I used my Excel list of teas and printed out what I needed, cut them out and taped it on the bag. Much easier than using my labeler which would take too long for every tea.

Awesome, now you’ll have to report back later on if you think the wine cooler storage is working… hopefully it is!

Ubacat said

I hope so! I might be getting into them later in the fall so time will tell.

LuckyMe said

Here’s some interesting info about refrigeration from Verdant:

“…In China, all reputable tea vendors store their higher quality green and green oolong in a very cold refrigerator (almost freezing), which is what I was referring to in my blog on the Verdant Tea site…”

I don’t have a wine cooler but I’ve tried to simulate this in my fridge. The coldest spot in the fridge is the bottom shelf towards the back. Using an infrared thermometer, I measured the temperature there to be consistently 35-36F, just slightly above freezing. I keep my teas there and double, sometimes even triple bag them to avoid smells.

My Japanese greens and herbals do very well stored in this manner. Chinese greens have also kept well with the exception of one that developed off flavors. However, the fridge seems to have a paralyzing effect on jade oolongs. I refrigerated a couple of vacuum sealed Taiwanese teas last year that ended up tasting weak and took a few steeps before releasing any flavor.

Oh cool, thanks LuckyMe!

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onjinone said

Yeah, you can refrigerate greens and oolongs. It’s obviously not the best but it can help if you plan on holding them longer.

I would still advise you to keep it away from foods that might create stronger odors or on its own separate shelf/drawer in side the refrigerator. Even better if you have an extra small refrigerator or something that’s kept exclusively for teas.

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