Your freezer can be a very useful and versatile kitchen tool. In addition to preserving and reserving foods for later, the freezer allows for quick weeknight meals and is the perfect place to store your leftovers. Read below for some quick perks and tips on freezing your food.
- Stock your freezer with lots of fruits and vegetables. They should take up a lot of freezer space. Fresh produce can spoil in a few days, but frozen vegetables and fruit are safe for up to 1 year. Plus, they cook quickly since they are pre-cut. The best part? Since vegetables and fruit are frozen within hours of being picked, they often have more antioxidants and vitamins than fresh versions.
- Freeze whole grains, seeds and nuts to prolong their shelf life. You can store nuts for up to 2 years, while grain storage depends on the variety.
- Round out your shelf space with pre-cut portions of chicken, fish and meat. Why buy smaller cuts and individual portions, such as patties, fish fillets and chicken breasts, for freezing? It’s hard to cut into frozen food, and thawing adds preparation time. You can freeze meat, poultry and fish for up to 1 year.
- Freeze your leftovers and cook in bulk. Having pre-cooked foods you can easily reheat is a great solution for busy weeknights. Soups and stews last about 3 months and meat dishes can last up to 6 months in the freezer — as opposed to only 4 days in the fridge.Waste not, want not — use your freezer.