It’s Freezing! 10 Tips To Maximize Your Freezer Usage

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When I was younger I can distinctly remember visiting a friend of mine’s house and her mom asked if we wanted a snack. She pulled out a bag of tortilla chips from the freezer. This stuck with me and I’m not really sure why. It was a unique concept to me because the only frozen thing I remember growing up, besides pizza and a few bags of veggies, was a box of popsicles. In my mind, things like pizza and popsicles were supposed to be frozen. It’s not that they were bad, it was actually pretty genius. Who would think to freeze chips? Turns out, many people do.

 

Freezer storage and freezer cooking are very common and also very valuable practices. Your freezer can save you some serious cash.

 

Utilize these ten tips to maximize your freezer usage:

 

Freezer Safety & Organization

 

  1. Be sure to carefully label and date each item to be frozen. For specific information regarding thawing, freshness, and safety visit the USDA website.
  2. Keep your freezer organized; you’ll make your cooking cheaper, more efficient and faster. Get inspired by looking at these five well-organized freezers.
  3. Keep a freezer inventory so that you know exactly what you have and when you need to use it.

 

How & What to Freeze

 

  1. Portion out your meats the way you typically eat them (instead of throwing the entire container in the freezer) so that you can thaw only what you need.
  2. Freeze your very-ripe bananas to use later. Bananas go bad so fast and then you’re stuck throwing them out. Peel them, mash them, measure, and place in a plastic bag and freeze for banana bread, muffins, shakes, and more!
  3. Blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries are all great frozen. They can be thawed and added to baked goods, used as toppings, or even added to smoothies.
  4. You can freeze many hard or semi-hard cheeses, such as cheddar, mozzarella, muenster, provolone, swiss and parmesan. They may become crumbly after you thaw them, so plan to use them in cooking rather than to slice or place on sandwiches. Refrigerate to thaw and use within one or two days.
  5. Freeze the juice of ripe (leaning to over-ripe) oranges, lemons, or limes by squeezing it into ice cube trays. You can add it to tea or water. You can also freeze the zest for use in recipes later.
  6. Freeze leftover broths or stock in ice cube trays to add to recipes later.
  7. Freeze cookies before or after you bake them. Frozen baked cookies can be warmed in the oven or microwave before serving and you get that fresh baked cookie smell.

Have a tip to share? Leave your tip in the comments!

 

 

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