If you’ve ever tried to store a donut, you share the frustration of many when you realize that they either go stale or seem to melt right before your eyes. Glazed donuts are especially tricky, since sugar glazes and moisture don’t mix. Even in a refrigerator, a glazed donut may become soggy or sticky. While donuts are best eaten the day you get them, you have a few storage options.
You don’t have to store glazed donuts in the refrigerator for them to stay fresh. In fact, storing them in the refrigerator can create a moist environment, which makes the glaze of your donut melt and absorb into the donut -- resulting in a soggy, sticky mess. If, however, your donuts have a filling, such as cream or custard, it’s best to store them in the refrigerator. Cover such donuts with foil or plastic wrap on a plate. Don’t use a plastic bag -- this can trap moisture against the donut’s glaze.
Donuts stored at room temperature often dry out before the integrity of the glaze is compromised. You can counteract this by covering donuts with plastic wrap or placing them in a plastic bag. Store donuts in a cool, dry place in your pantry. Glazed donuts last one to two days at room temperature.
As long as your donuts don’t have a filling you can freeze them. To freeze donuts, wrap them with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place them in a freezer bag or plastic storage container. Frozen donuts may last up to three months. Defrosting, however, introduces moisture to the donut and can compromise the glaze. Counteract this by defrosting the donut, uncovered, on the counter -- the process takes 10 to 15 minutes.
Homemade donuts are best eaten the day they’re prepared, but only glaze the ones you’ll consume that day. Freeze the rest, unglazed, and reheat them in the oven. Glaze the donuts immediately once out of the oven.