Difference in texture when frozen

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Difference in texture when frozen

This annoys me and I just hope someone can explain this to me. I regulary buy ice coffee at the store and put it in the freezer. The ice coffee consist of mostly milk and coffee. When I defrost the frozen ice coffee for half an hour in a glass of water it turns into a smooth, frozen, creamy beverage to enjoy with a spoon. Major life hack if you ask me.

BUT – sometimes the same ice coffee has a completly different texture after freezing. Happens about 1/4 of the times. It becomes icy and flaky and crunchy – not a desired consistency. I cant seem to find the reason for this happening. I’ve considered testing different things – using the super freeze mode on the freezer vs not, shaking the beverage before freezing vs not. But instead I would love if someone could just explain the chemistry behind it 😅

In: Chemistry

3 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

The main determinant of texture in frozen foods is the size of the ice crystals as the water content freezes. If the freezing happens slowly, without agitation you will get large, crunchy ice crystals. If the freezing is rapid, with agitation, and/or there is some substance mixed in that will disrupt the growth of the ice crystals (emulsified fat, sugar, suspended solids, etc.) the resulting crystals will be smaller, generally resulting in a smoother, “creamier” texture.

Anonymous 0 Comments

I would assume its an inconsistency in the process of freezing and defrosting.

do you always defrost in the same container (one might provide more insulation so more time is required)

do you defrost in the fridge or on counter?? house temps vary slightly….sunlight exposure

are you freezing/thawing/freezing same container of coffee?? this can change the makeup of the remaining liquid as pouring may not remove component ingredients equally

Anonymous 0 Comments

I think stirring vigorously before freezing might bring about the result you desire.

What is happening is you have a complex mixture of emulsified solids. The size of those particles is critical to the behavior of how they freeze.