In our modern 21st century world, we cannot live without the miracle of frozen pizza. As long as we buy high quality frozen pizza, we can have a delicious tomato and cheese experience whenever we want.
But what if we forget about a pizza at the bottom of our freezer for months on end? Can frozen pizzas go bad?
A frozen pizza can remain edible for up to 18 months, but one year is the usual amount of time that a pizza will last before it loses its flavor. However, if a pizza does not have cheese on it, it may last longer, as the cheese will be the first ingredient to deteriorate.
If you cook a frozen pizza, do not place the cooked pizza back in the freezer.
Do Frozen Pizzas Go Bad?
Have you ever had a dream where you scored your favorite frozen pizza on sale for only a dollar at Walmart?
No? That was just me?
Okay, for the sake of this article, pretend you had that dream. Buying a delicious frozen pizza for only $1 is a bargain, even in a dream.
If it happened in real life, you would place all the pizzas at the bottom of the freezer and save them for when you are drunk or have friends over.
But how long can a frozen pizza sit in the freezer before it goes bad? Can a frozen pizza go bad?
Yes, a frozen pizza can go bad. It will not look like it’s going bad, but when you remove it from the freezer and put it in the oven, a bad frozen pizza will produce a sour smell.
A frozen pizza sitting in the freezer for too long will dry out. Most frozen pizzas last 12-18 months in the freezer.
Pizza that has extra cheese or stuffed crust cheese may not last 12 months, because dairy does not keep well in the freezer.
Also, the grocery store may have received a bad batch. Frozen pizzas are wrapped in plastic and then shipped in cardboard boxes, so you may not tell if the pizza rotted during the shipping process.
Some refrigerator trucks do not perform as well as they should, and the temperature in the truck rises too high. Even 45F can be too warm.
The next time you want to buy a pizza at the grocery store, inspect the box for damage. Pizza boxes should be dry and firm. It should not be damp and the box shouldn’t have wrinkles and bends in it.
How to Tell if a Frozen Pizza Has Gone Bad
Here are a few signs that can help you figure out if the frozen pizza cooking in your oven is bad.
The Dough Isn’t Rising
If you see that the frozen pizza in the oven is not rising and it still looks like flatbread, then there is something wrong with the dough.
The pizza may have gone past its expiration date.
The Pizza Has Freezer Burn
Freezer burn occurs when moisture builds up and freezes on the pizza. If you see a small amount of freezer burn, then cut that piece away and make the rest of the pizza.
But if the pizza is covered in freezer burn, then it is no longer safe to eat.
The Toppings Don’t Look Good
Old spoiled toppings won’t be noticeable in the freezer, but they will be noticeable once the pizza is fully cooked.
Withered toppings will look like they have no moisture in them, they will dry, and they will look like pieces of jerky.
Can I Refreeze a Thawed Pizza?
Let’s say you took a frozen pizza out of the freezer and let it sit on the counter because you thought your friends were coming over.
It turns out they’re not coming over because there’s a big snowstorm, but the frozen pizza on the counter is now thawed and ready to go into the oven. Should you put it back in the freezer?
Never put a thawed frozen pizza back into the freezer. Frozen pizza should be cooked after it thaws. Some frozen pizzas skip the thawing process and should be placed in the oven directly out of the freezer box.
Cook the thawed pizza and enjoy it all by yourself. The reason you should not refreeze a thawed pizza is because the warmth from the pizza will create moisture inside the packaging.
The moisture will sit on the pizza and turn into freezer burn as the pizza refreezes. Plus, refreezing Pizza will change the texture of the dough and the ingredients and make the yeast less effective.
If the frozen pizza is not thawed all the way through, you may put it back in the freezer. Once the pizza is removed from the freezer, it has a 2-hour window before it is no longer safe to put it back in the freezer. A pizza sitting on the counter for only 45 minutes can go back in the freezer.
What About Frozen Pizza Made by a Specialty Shop?
Specialty Italian restaurants and grocery stores sometimes freeze their pizzas and provide instructions so customers can take their pizzas home and cook them in their oven.
Specialty pizzas do not have preservatives and are made with fresh ingredients, so they will not last long in the freezer.
Unless otherwise told, a freshly made frozen pizza only lasts after 2 months. Sometimes, the fresh pizza will only last 1 month. Pizzas that only last a month have a lot of vegetable toppings and extra cheese.
Conclusion to If Frozen Pizza Goes Bad
Cooked frozen pizza can last 3 days in the refrigerator. If the frozen pizza has freezer burn or the dough didn’t rise and the toppings look dried up after cooking it, then the frozen pizza is bad.
Frozen pizza can last from 12 months to 18 months in the freezer. If a specialty store makes a pizza and then freezes it, it will only last up to 2 months, maybe even just one month.