Saturday, September 5, 2009

What Can You Freeze? Tips on Freezing?

After re-organizing my freezer this afternoon trying to make space for some more dinner meats that I was able to pick up on sale this week, I started thinking about writing a post about what you can freeze. Believe it or not, before I started stockpiling and saving money on grocery bills, I had no idea what you could really freeze and for how long. Hopefully, I will be able to give you an idea of how to take advantage of more grocery deals by being able to freeze your stockpile items.

Tips on Freezing
  • First off, You will want to make sure when freezing that you are conscious of your space in the freezer. You want to freeze your food flat in freezer bags that can stack easily horizontally or vertically in the freezer to maximize your space and allow more food to go in there. For example, I have found in the past that when I make Waffles for my children and if I have any left overs, I will lay them flat on a cookie sheet, place them in the freezer for less than hour just so they become slightly frozen, then I stack them into a freezer bag so I am able to re-heat one at a time because they did not stick together.

Freezer Burn

  • Avoid freezer burn by using airtight containers or by wrapping whatever you are freezing with freezer paper or plastic wrap and then place the item into a freezer bag.

Items you can Freeze

  • Meats such as steaks, hamburger meat, poultry, pork, deli meats, etc. These type of meats freeze well for 3 months

  • Bread, cakes & cookies all freeze well too, believe it or not! These items can be put into your freezer for around two months, while cookies can last up to one year in the freezer. Biggest tip is to make sure that you store these items in a freezer bag or airtight containers so the bread, cookies, etc. will not become stale when you thaw them out

  • Cheese: Hard or semi-hard cheese can be frozen if cut into 1/2 to 1 pound blocks. Wrap in plastic wrap and put into freezer bags. Use within 4 to 6 months of freezing

  • Milk: You can freeze skim, 1%, and 2% Milk gallons. Just make sure you give the milk a little extra expansion room in the jug during the freezing process so you don't have a mess! Milk can be frozen for up to 3 months. Just thaw in the refrigerator and shake well before using.

  • Fruit and Vegetables: Wash them thoroughly before placing them into an airtight container. I especially love freezing my strawberries, peaches & blueberries that my kids pick at a "pick-it-berry" farm. These frozen fruits work great in recipes, desserts or even topping on their waffles/pancakes.

Do you have any tips on freezing or special items you like to freeze? if so, please feel free to share.


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