Part of a series on How You Can Save Money On Your Grocery Bill
What foods can you freeze? There are many foods that you can freeze without any problems like texture changes or water leakage. Freezing is a good way to preserve food freshness and safety. Here is a list of the foods that you can freeze and tips for freezing foods.
Revised Aug. 10, 2020 – Originally published May 23, 2020 Deborah Esplin
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Foods That You Can Freeze
In the previous blog, we looked at what you can’t freeze; which is a really shortlist. Now for the long list of foods that you can freeze.
Bean pastes Beans, cooked Bread
Bread dough Breadcrumbs Burritos
Butter Cakes, without icing Casseroles
Cheese curds Cheeses, hard Coffee, ground/beans
Canned goods, out of can Condiments
Cookie dough Cookies, without cream Cottage Cheese
Doughnuts, unglazed Fish, raw/cooked Flours/Grains
Goat’s cheese Granola Herbs, Spices
Honey Hummus Jams, Jellies
Juices Lentils, Legumes, raw/cooked
Meals, cooked Meats, raw/cooked Milk, Buttermilk
Muffins Nut butters Nuts
Oils Pancakes Pasta, cooked in sauce
Pastries, without cream Pastry sheets, raw Peanut butter
Pies, cooked Pie shells Pizza, raw/cooked
Quiches, cooked Quick breads Rice, Grains, raw/cooked
Sandwiches, with nut butters Scones
Sauces, with flour/cornstarch Seafood, raw/cooked
Seeds Soups Stews
Stocks Tea Tomato paste
Vegetables, blanched Yogurt
Whipped cream sweetened
Most Foods Can Be Frozen But A Few Go Through Texture Changes
There are a few foods that can be frozen but they go through texture changes. Read my blog post on this topic, Foods Not To Freeze It’s A Short List, for more information on those foods like eggs and soft cheeses. Also, you can freeze salad greens, but they will go mushy, so you will only want to use them in cooked foods or smoothies.
Tips For Freezing Liquids
Liquids, like juice, milk, and sauces, expand when they freeze. If they don’t have space at the top of the container, they need to be removed from their container, and put in a bottle for freezing. If you can’t see how much space there is at the top, it is better to remove the liquid from the original packaging. Most milks and juices do not have enough space at the top to allow for expansion upon freezing.
I like to use these bottles for freezing liquids. They are available from Amazon, are not expensive, are BPA-free and can be put in the dishwasher. The Nalgene 32 oz water bottle is great for larger amounts and the 24 oz Rubbermaid bottle is food for smaller amounts.
It is not a good idea to put any food packed in glass into the freezer. Glass will become even more brittle during freezing and is prone to breaking. The only exception would be glass storage containers that are made to go in the freezer.
Other foods, like hummus, deli and sliced meats, and cheese can be frozen in their original packaging. Eggs need to be shelled and put in a container before freezing. Canned foods need to be removed from the can before freezing.
Tips For Freezing Vegetables
Blanching vegetables before freezing means they will have a firmer texture upon thawing. Blanched vegetables do not become as soggy in the freezing process. They will still be somewhat softer than if they had not been frozen, but without blanching, vegetables go completely soft when they are frozen.
Why Freeze All These Foods?
You can buy in bulk, which saves money. You can keep foods fresher longer and you can freeze foods that might spoil before you can use then. Freezing foods saves you money and cuts your food waste.
Some of the foods listed above are shelf-stable foods like oil, coffee, flour, bread. Why would you want to freeze these foods? Freezing will prolong their shelf life and not affect the quality of the food. That way you can buy a 20 kg bag of flour or larger packs of bread, as examples, which will save you money and you can keep the food fresh in the freezer.
Freeze Foods When They Are Still Good
Freezing foods does not kill any bacteria in the food. Freezing just stops the bacteria from growing. That is why it is important to freeze foods when they are still of good quality and safe so that they come out of the freezer still in good quality and safe.
Food that has gone bad should not be frozen. It will still be bad when it comes out of the freezer.
Preparing Food For The Freezer
When you freeze foods, wrap them tightly with good quality flexible plastic wrap or use freezer bags or put them in airtight containers. Protecting your foods from freezer burn is important to keep their quality. Freezer burn is a fancy name for foods drying out and losing their quality over time in the freezer.
Label And Date Your Foods
Label and date food packages before they go in the freezer unless they are in their original packaging from the store. It is easy to forget what’s inside and how long it’s been there. Plus once food is frozen, it is hard to see what it looks like. When you take items out of the freezer condensation starts and you can’t see through the packaging.
You Can Freeze Almost Any Food Tips Summary
- Freeze foods when they are still good and fresh.
- Leave space at the top of containers with liquids.
- Wrap foods very well for freezing or use airtight containers.
- Label and date everything.
- Don’t freeze food that is bad unless it is going to waste.
- Blanching vegetables to reduce the mushiness after thawing.
- Raw vegetables/salad greens/raw fruits can be used in cooked meals and smoothies.
- Consult the list of foods you can freeze.
- By freezing foods helps you save money and cut your food waste.
Check out my companion video on this topic:
Here is a link to the next blog post in this series: What You Need To Freeze Foods.
Check out posts on other topics here: Blog Table of Contents.
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