How to Freeze and Store your Breast Milk

How to Freeze and Store your Breast Milk

If you’re a breastfeeding mom, chances are you’ll want to know how to freeze and store your breast milk at some point during your breastfeeding journey.  Having frozen pumped milk for baby is so helpful if you ever want to spend time away from your little one.  Whether it’s returning to work or just going out to dinner with friends, it’s a great idea to have a little extra milk stashed away.  Here are my best tips for freezing and storing your breast milk.

When to Transfer Milk to the Freezer

After you’ve pumped, you can keep your breast milk in the fridge for up to five days (three days is best).  After that, it’s a good idea to bag it up and freeze it.   Breast milk is good in the freezer for up to six months and good in a deep freezer for up to a year.

How to Freeze your Milk

I try to freeze my milk in 3 ounce portions because that’s about how much Elliott eats per feeding.  You can freeze your milk in any size portions, depending on your little one’s eating habits and your needs (i.e. if you need the milk for daycare or just for an outing here and there). 

Tip: If you’re a working mom, I highly recommend the Ultimate Back to Work Pumping Class.  The online class teaches you everything you need to know about how to build your freezer stash, what you need when returning to work, how to keep your milk supply up, and more. 

When I’m pouring my milk from the pumping bottles to the milk storage bags, I like to use my flanges as a funnel so that I don’t make any spills.  Once all of my milk is portioned into 3 ounce bags, I date and label the bags.  If your child is going to childcare, it’s a great idea to put your child’s name on the bag as well.

Next, I use a large Tupperware (and empty wipe container works great, too) and lay the bags flat on top of one another.  This ensures that none of the bags fall over while in the freezer.  I put the Tupperware in the freezer and give the milk time to freeze.

How to Make Breast Milk Bricks

Once the bags are frozen, I like to make breast milk bricks.  I stand the bags up and put them into a gallon sized Ziplock bag.  I can usually fit 15-17 milk storage bags in each Ziplock.  Then I put the date range on the front of the Ziplock and put it into my deep freezer.  I stack them so that the oldest milk will be on top and used first. 

Other Storage Solutions

Although I like to make bricks, it’s not the only way to store your frozen breastmilk.  I love these storage bins from Amazon and the Milkies Freeze organizer.  You can also use an empty soda box or just stack your milk in the freezer with the oldest milk up front.  It really just depends on the size of your freezer stash, if you want to be able to stack your milk, and how much space you have.

If you’re working on your freezer stash, don’t forget to check out my post on How to Pump More Milk.  I share tips on how to get the most out of every pumping session so that you have a little extra to put away.

I hope this post was helpful and helps you keep your freezer stash stocked and organized.  Happy Pumping!

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