What ARE The Best Foods To Freeze?
If you have a busy lifestyle, you’re probably used to juggling lots of things at a time. This means that cooking often ends up at the bottom of a to-do list for many people. Not having enough time to prepare home-cooked meals regularly can be a setback for healthy eating.
Luckily, besides meats, there are many fruits and vegetables that can be stored in the freezer for quite a long while. But what about all the other grocery staples you love?
Whether the supermarket is having a big sale on grapes or you have a massive crop of parsley no one wants, you’ll be delighted to know that these everyday food items can be popped into the freezer for long-term storage, besides all your frozen meals!
When we’re talking about foods to freeze, not everything goes. Foods that have high moisture content, like watermelon, cucumbers, and oranges, don’t freeze very well.
But with the proper preparation, your freezer can prolong the lives of many foods. Read on to discover the 20 best foods to freeze in order to make your life easier!
For some practical serving portions, divide two to four slices between some pieces of wax paper and store them in a freezer bag. When you need them, just thaw them out overnight in the fridge, and you’ll be all set to cook them in the morning.
But if you need to defrost them in a couple of hours, place the freezer bag in some cold water, changing the water every 30 minutes until it fully thaws.
Believe us. It tastes just as fresh when you pull it out of the freezer. Applesauce can be stored in an airtight container for up to 12 months. Just remember to leave a bit of space in the container.
Be sure to wash and halve this yummy fruit before peeling. You can freeze avocados as halves or puree them with some lime or lemon juice. Frozen avocados tend to become a bit mushy, so they’re perfect for sauces or dips but not as great for eating by the slice.
Whether we’re talking about meat or veggie, burgers freeze very well. You can cook them ahead of time and then let them cool off a bit. Wrap them in some plastic wrap and put them in the freezer in ziplock bags.
You can just reheat them when you’re ready to eat. Or, for a better option, you can just form them into patties and freeze them raw, so all you have to do is thaw and cook them.
Bananas are the perfect option to freeze with or without skin. Just bear in mind that, like avocados, bananas WILL be mushy. But that’s just fine if you want to save them for a yummy banana bread, pancakes or smoothies, just not for munching on whole.
Note: Not all casseroles are ok to freeze. But there are definitely lots of recipes out there that you can try and that are also freezer-friendly! A perfect example would be lasagna.
They’re great to make ahead of time, freeze them, and then just warm them up in the oven on a night when you don’t have time to cook!
…Casseroles are some of the most delicious and practical foods to freeze out there!
Grate your preferred cheese and place it in an airtight bag. We would recommend portioning into 1 or 2 cup servings for your convenience. Try adding a tablespoon of cornstarch to prevent clumping and shake to combine.
Thaw in the fridge, and you can use them for casseroles, soups, quiche, or even on some homemade pizza. Note: Hard cheeses like cheddar, parmesan, and mozzarella freeze better than soft cheeses.
Waffles And Pancakes
These would be just perfect to have for when you have hectic mornings. Wrap 3 or 4 pancakes, or however many you want for an individual serving, in saran wrap and freeze them in some Ziploc bags.
And just unwrap and pop them in your toaster or microwave to heat them for breakfast.
Sour Cream And Cream Cheese
If you plan on spreading it on a bagel, forget about freezing it because the texture will change. But if you’re using that cream cheese or sour cream for casseroles, cheesecake, or any other baked goods, it can definitely be frozen.
Just thaw it out in the fridge overnight, reheat slowly, and constantly stir, so it doesn’t separate or curdles. Whipping cream can also be frozen, but it’ll be broken and unable to be whipped. So you can only use it for sauces.
Most soups store amazingly well in your freezer! Whip up a double batch of your favorite, let it cool completely, and transfer half of it to a gallon-sized Ziploc bag. To save on space in the freezer, be sure to store it flat!
Never freeze eggs in the shell! However, you CAN freeze them either gently whisked and stored in a freezer-friendly container or separated and poured into some ice cube trays. Remember that thawed egg whites may not whip up to foam, so avoid using them for things like cakes.
…When thinking about the best foods to freeze, have you ever considered eggs?
Sauces And Broths
Instead of throwing away your veggie scraps, you can use them to make a batch of some delicious veggie broth. Then freeze it up in 2 to 4 cup containers and just thaw when you need them! Got some extra tomatoes in the summer?
You can whip up some homemade tomato sauce and freeze it to use throughout the cold season.
Add some meat or lentils to make a bolognese or your favorite vegetables for added nutrients, and then all you have to do is cook up some pasta on a busy night, defrost your pre-made sauce, and dinner is served!
Ever had a frozen grape? They’re delicious! Just wash and dry them thoroughly and spread them out on a baking sheet to freeze overnight.
Throw them into an airtight bag, and when you’re craving a snack, grab a handful and start munching!
Bread And Other Doughs
Homemade bread is easy because you can avoid store-bought bread’s long and unhealthy ingredient lists. Make a couple of extra loaves and stick them in the freezer to use in the next few weeks.
You can also make things like pizza dough ahead of time, then just transfer it to the fridge to thaw before having homemade pizza night!
If you want to make hummus recipes ahead of time, have at it! Then add a thin layer of olive oil to the top of the hummus that’s been placed in an airtight container.
Then just seal and freeze it. When you’re ready to use it, thaw it out in the fridge for a day and mix thoroughly.
Lentils And Beans
You can make a whole bag of dried beans or lentils, let them cool, divide them into ziplock bags, and store them in the freezer. When you’re ready to use them, beat the bag on the counter a few times to loosen it up and add directly to whatever you’re cooking.
For best results, undercook them slightly at first, and they’ll cook a little more in whatever dish you choose to add them to.
Citrus fruits can be frozen in airtight containers. Then you break off a piece whenever you want to use them. Squeeze the juice into ice cube trays and freeze.
Pop cubes into a freezer bag and take them out as needed. Use the cubes to chill homemade lemonades on hot summer days without diluting the flavor.
Have you heard about these? They make the perfect snack, and keeping them in the freezer is a breeze. They stay cold and tasty but don’t freeze all the way through, so you can actually eat them right when you take them out.
A fantastic combo is 2 cups of chopped and pitted dates, 1 1/2 cups of almonds, 1/2 cup of peanut butter…plus some chia and pumpkin seeds. There are infinite combinations out there for you to enjoy, depending on your preference.
If your milk is getting a bit too close to its expiration date and it’s still half full, don’t worry! Just freeze away. It may become a bit grainy, so it’s best if you use it for cooking and baking rather than drinking.
Freeze it in a glass container or ice cube tray, and as always, leave room for expansion. Thaw it out in the fridge and shake it very well before using.
When you have the time, customize some breakfast burritos or any type of traditional burritos for lunch or dinner. Wrap them individually, then defrost them in the microwave for a quick meal!
So what did you think about all these foods to freeze? We may have supplied you with some ideas, but the bottom line is that there are many options for you to cut down on your cooking times out there.
Pick out your favorites, and get creative! Be sure to let us know in the comments. Meanwhile, you might also like: 8 Smoothies Targeted for Specific Health Issues