What to Cook for Dinner?
Ever wonder what food will freeze well? These 10 foods that freeze well. Could you save money by stocking up and freezing them too?
Knowing which foods freeze well can help you plan how much to purchase when you see an item on sale.
If a food item will freeze well, you can keep it longer and stock up more. If it won’t freeze well, it’s better to purchase only what you can use. Because wasted food is just like wasting money.
Below you’ll find a few rules to know which items will freeze well. Then we’ll get into 10 foods that freeze well. All the foods listed are items I freeze with no problems.
When foods are frozen there will always be a small change. But these 10 foods listed are ones I’ve found to have little change in texture or quality when I freeze them.
Rules for Freezing Food
If it has lots of water, it won’t freeze well.
Well, at least it won’t freeze well if you plan on eating it fresh. You can freeze foods like grapes. They can be frozen and enjoyed partially thawed for a snack or blended into a smoothy. But thaw it and think it will be like eating a fresh grape and you’ll be disappointed.
You can freeze cabbage or cucumbers in freezer recipes for coleslaw and freezer pickles but to freeze them and then thaw to eat they will be limp and watery. Not good at all.
It Can Make a Difference How You Freeze an Item
A few foods it does make a difference in how you freeze them. Blocks of cheese don’t freeze well. But if you shred the cheese first they freeze fine.
You can freeze fresh vegetables without blanching like green beans, peas, and other items. But blanching can help them keep better and longer in the freezer.
If it Doesn’t Taste Good Now, Freezing won’t Help
If you are freezing an item like a casserole dish because you didn’t care for it the first time. After freezing and thawing it won’t be any better. If you don’t like it now, freezing won’t help it taste better.
10 Foods that Freeze Well and How to Freeze Them
All the items below are foods I freeze regularly to make getting my family fed just a little easier. And to save money.
Whenever I make soup, we always have leftovers. And if we don’t eat it the next day, I know we will forget about it. Then it will go to waste and wasted food is wasted money.
To freeze soup, place it into a freezer safe container or zippered top freezer bag. If your space is limited in the freezer, use a freezer bag, lay it flat until frozen, Then stand it up on end to take up less room.
2. Pancakes, Waffles, Muffins, Bagels
We made many of our bread items from scratch and I’ll make a double or triple batch to make sure to have extras to freeze. For muffins and bagels we will place them in a freezer bag. Remove as much air as possible and freeze.
Be sure to label what’s in the bag. You don’t want mystery bags hanging out in the freezer.
But if you know how many you’ll use each meal, you can freeze them all in the freezer bag without doing the cookie sheet method.
If it’s homemade bread or store bought bread, if it won’t be eaten in a day or two, it goes into the freezer.
To freeze just place the loaf of bread in the freezer. I freeze it in the bread bag with no other protection since we use it in a week or two at the most. You can also freeze homemade bread too.
4. Bread Dough or Pizza Dough
I bake my bread before freezing it but if you don’t care for frozen and thawed baked bread, you can freeze the dough instead.
Shape the dough and place it into a freezer bag. Label and freeze. When you are ready to bake bread, thaw in the refrigerator and place in a pan to rise and then bake. It’s fresh bread without all the work.
Be sure when you are making your dough to triple your batch so you’ll have a good amount of dough waiting. It will save you time when baking bread.
For burritos, I make the burritos and wrap them individually, either in foil or waxed paper. Then place the wrapped burritos in a freezer bag. Label and freeze. Having them individually wrapped makes it easier to grab what I need without having to pry them apart.
Having burritos on hand ready to thaw, heat, and eat makes for a quick lunch or dinner on busy days.
6. Calzones or Pizza Pockets
You can purchase pizza pockets at the store but the homemade ones are so much better. Plus you get to control the ingredients.
I will make calzones, mini Stromboli, or pizza pockets and cool completely. You don’t want moisture building up in the bag and making them soggy.
Then place the cooled food in a freezer bag, label, and freeze. I like to underbake them a little so I can reheat them in the oven to keep the crust crisp.
Cooking dry beans can save you so much money over canned beans but it takes time. That’s why I cook a lot of beans when I make them. Once cooled, I divide them into 2 cup portions and freeze. Use them in place of canned beans in many recipes and save money.
Cheese is a special case. If you freeze a block of cheese, it will become crumbly when thawed but if you freeze it shredded it hold up. So if you want to preserve cheese for a longer shelf life, shred it first before you freeze it. The thawed quality will be better.
Having onions waiting and ready in the freezer makes throwing together dinner so much easier. Onion freezes well if they will be used in cooked dishes. If you’ll be using them fresh in a salad, it’s better to chop at the time of use and not use onions from the freezer.
I try to keep a variety of onions in the freezer. I like rough chopped onions, sliced, and finely diced onions in 1/2 cup portions. It makes it easy to grab what I need.
10. Garlic and Ginger
I freeze my garlic and ginger to keep it from going bad.
If you are like me you purchase ginger to use for a recipe and it might be another week before you need more fresh ginger. By that time it can be a slick, yucky mess. And there’s money down the drain you are not getting back. And ginger can cost $4 a pound too costly to let go to waste.
So I freeze mine so it keeps longer and I grate it right from frozen. See how I freeze ginger.
I purchase bags of garlic heads at the store and then make my own diced garlic cubes. It makes adding fresh garlic to a dish so much easier. Plus you won’t have to worry about grabbing a head of garlic out of the cupboard to find it’s a deflated dried up ball.
When you freeze items to preserve them for later, you keep food waste at a minimum. Which in turns save you money because wasted food is just like wasting money.
What other foods would you add to our list of 10 foods that freeze well?
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