Frozen foods can be a great way to get fruits and vegetables at affordable prices. When you buy foods in bulk during the sale period and freeze them well, they help you save money. Purchasing large quantities of food is cheaper than purchasing smaller packs or portions.
Even if you visit a farmer’s market, you usually find foods and ingredients at lower prices only if you buy large quantities. It would be best to freeze it when you don’t want to waste this cheaply purchased produce.
Freshly picked fruits and vegetables get frozen within hours. Hence, they preserve their nutrients and are suitable to serve anytime.
Why is freezing food a good idea?
It’s not only about buying frozen foods that save you money; you can freeze your homemade food and save a lot. Freezing food has plenty of benefits. Here are some prominent advantages of freezing food.
Freezing food conserves its nutritional value. The nutrients of the food remain intact when you freeze it in time. Whenever you have leftovers, and you freeze them as early as possible, the optimum flavors and freshness of the food get locked in. You can get a fresh meal whenever you defrost the frozen batches of food and reheat them.
Extends shelf life naturally
Moreover, freezing food does not need any preservatives to keep them safe from spoilage. Freezing is a natural preservative and keeps your food fresh for your next meal. It saves your food from spoiling and saves a lot of cooking time when you have a few batches of food ready to eat during busy hours.
It is convenient to have some pre-cooked meals frozen. You can prepare food in double or triple quantities and save it for another day. It can help you in emergencies. You may plan to cook a good dinner tonight, but some unexpected things can come up, and push aside all your cooking plans.
It’s always easier to have some food in your freezer that you can microwave whenever you need a meal quickly.
Keeping different food dishes frozen will help you have a quick meal every time. Your dinner can be prepared in a jiffy when you have no time to cook a three-course meal.
Does freezing food save money?
When you throw leftovers into the trash can, you are throwing cash away. One cannot afford to throw some money into the trash every day. Then why throw away the food that you purchased and prepared?
Yes, it helps you save and use every bit of food and ingredients as freezing preserves foods for longer than their regular shelf life. You can stock your freezer with different food packets. Label them with the date, and you can easily consume the oldest batch first.
Freezing is helpful in several ways; most importantly, it keeps you from wasting food, saving you a good amount of money.
How can freezing food reduce food waste?
When we buy fresh food from the supermarkets, we pick the newest batch. And often all the stale food goes to the trash. We can reduce food wastage by purchasing frozen food.
Many food products perish quickly. But when they are frozen soon after the harvest, their shelf life increases, and they can reach your table as delicious as freshly harvested.
If you want to freeze homemade food, a home freezer can keep it for three to twelve months, and you don’t need to compromise on the quality.
What foods can I freeze?
You can freeze almost everything, but not everything may retain quality and flavor when frozen. The best foods you can freeze to save money are as follows:
- Peeled bananas
- Fruit Pulp
- Raw or cooked meat
- All kinds of flours (and you don’t need to thaw them)
- Bread slices
- Raw egg whites
- Cottage cheese
- Milk (can be used for cooking only)
- Ice cream
- Whipped cream
- Cooked Pasta
- Hot Dogs
- Dry Herbs
- Beef (preferably ground)
- Slices peaches
- Pineapple chunks
- Potatoes (cooked)
- Sweet Potatoes
- Cake batter
- Uncooked pizza dough
- Blanched Vegetables
What foods cannot be frozen?
While you can freeze almost every kind of food, many of them are bad to freeze and eat later. Here is a list of foods you should not freeze and use later:
- Hard-boiled eggs
- Sour cream
- Fried foods
- Carbonated drinks
- Salad greens
- Egg-based sauces
- Thawed meat
- Oranges (you can store the juice)
- Fresh Herbs
Does having a second freezer save money?
Is it worth it to have an extra freezer? Yes, it is. An additional freezer allows you to buy things in bulk at a lower price. You can buy from farmers’ markets or supermarkets during the sale period and freeze them for later consumption.
A second freezer helps you store food for a month or two. It saves you money and lets you have your favorite food. You don’t need to go to the supermarkets whenever you need specific ingredients.
You will reduce your supermarket visits, saving money on fuel and saving time. Buying an extra freezer is a one-time cost and helps you save a good amount of money in the long run.
You can store different cuts of meat longer than cooked and ground meat. You can purchase larger quantities, divide them into separate batches, and freeze them to use as and when needed. Storing meat in smaller portions is one of the best ways to save money on meat.
You can keep the second freezer in your kitchen, laundry room, garage, or anywhere you have sufficient space. A second freezer will be helpful in several ways, including time-saving, no wastage of food, saving money by using every ingredient and preserving food without any chemicals.
Tips for freezing food
I never want to see the leftovers go to waste. And I always like to have some make-ahead meals ready in my freezer for emergencies or busy evenings when I don’t have time to cook.
It’s not just about being frugal with meals; being organized is essential. I like to keep my freezer well-organized to find the foods and ingredients quickly. If you freeze the food correctly and in the correct container, freezing is a blessing for all busy people like me.
Here are some tips for freezing food that will help you sort the freezer and keep all the foods easily accessible.
The right temperature of the freezer
Make sure that the freezer temperature is at 0° Fahrenheit. It helps retain the food’s flavors, aromas, and nutrients.
Don’t store hot food in the freezer
You should not store hot food in the freezer. Please bring it to room temperature and freeze it. Placing hot food directly in the freezer can increase bacterial growth in the food.
Hot food can interfere with the functioning of the freezer, which can impact its performance.
Store food in the proper containers
Don’t keep any food unwrapped or unpacked in the freezer. Divide the large quantity of food into small ones and place them in smaller containers. Make sure you use air-tight containers to store food in the freezer. Right-sized freezer bags and containers help you keep the freezer organized too.
You can keep the small items wrapped in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, soup stock in ice cube trays, and individual portions in plastic takeout containers.
Keep food covered
One must keep every food product covered to keep them safe from mixing flavors and aromas of each other. It also helps in preventing contamination. Covering foods prevents the growth of bacteria and fungus.
Keep adequate space between the containers
While storing the food in separate freezer bags and containers, keep sufficient space between the two. Keeping enough space between two packs helps to have better air circulation. Overcrowding a freezer may cause food to spoil faster and waste your time and effort.
Store food in small portions
If you have purchased a bulk supply of meat from the farmer’s market and want to save it for future consumption, avoid freezing the entire batch together. Divide it into small portions and store it in different containers or plastic bags.
This method will let you thaw only as much as you need as you can’t refreeze the defrosted meat. It saves you money and helps reduce waste.
Label the containers
As mentioned earlier, you should label all the containers and freezer bags. Keep the older stuff on one side or at the front. It will help you consume the older food products first. Keep rotating all the containers as per the date, and you will save food from spoiling.
Final Thoughts on “Saving time and money by freezing food”
Homemade food is wholesome and healthy. You will never run out of a good, healthy, and nourishing meal when you have the stock of frozen food ready. Your freezer can supply healthy foods while saving a decent amount of money for the future.
As the cost of living is rising, frugal living becomes hard. You can save money by not eating out, having homecooked meals, and saving every portion of a homemade meal.