Today, we are going to take about storage options. In order to make freezer cooking a viable option for your family, it needs to effective and affordable. These freezer cooking storage methods vary in initial cost and you will probably prefer a combination of them. Here are 4 Basic Freezer Meal Storage Methods that have stood the test of time and are also relatively inexpensive to purchase. Don’t forget the staple items like masking tape, easy peel and stick labels and permanent markers are a must for every dish you create to go in the freezer. If you don’t label your meals properly you won’t be able to know what you are pulling out to thaw and reheat.
4 Basic Freezer Meal Storage Methods
Freezer Storage Bags: The most inexpensive initial investment for storage would have to be the plastic freezer storage bags. Versatile, budget friendly and available in various sizes this is by far the most common method used. Make sure when planning to freezer for extended periods of time (more than 1 month) to double bag your food and as always label properly. Also double check that the plastic bags you are purchasing are specific for freezer use. Freezer bags are thicker and more durable than their thin counterparts often used to store sandwiches and snacks in lunch boxes. You can also purchase reusable bags, like
Plastic Freezer Storage Containers: There are multiple plastic storage container brands available for storing soups, stews, entrees and sauces in but it all boils down to your preferences. Do you want something that will be easy, temporary and can be thrown away when empty or do you want to make an investment in high quality containers that can be used over and over again. For easy and inexpensive I recommend buying these containers in bulk. For long term use that is durable and high quality I recommend using something along the lines of these Rubbermaid containers.
Foil Baking Pans: For things like casseroles, enchiladas, lasagna’s and entrees that you plan on reheating the whole pan the foil baking pans or leftover containers are excellent choices. They are inexpensive enough to use once and throw away but also durable enough to wash and reuse a few times as well. If using these I do recommend wrapping the entire pan/container in plastic wrap as well if storing for extended times for an extra level of protection from freezer burn.
Vacuum Seal Food Storage: Vacuum seal storage devices are definitely an investment and not to be taken lightly. If you plan on freezing a lot of meals or excess produce from your garden each year they are a great purchase. They provide the longest shelf life for the food stored within. Over the course of their lifetime (some even have lifetime warranties) they are definitely reasonable and cost effective. Make sure you plan on continuing freezer meal planning before making this basic freezer meal storage method investment.
As always regardless of the storage method used, make sure to practice proper safety techniques when cooking and freezing foods. Cool foods prior to placing in freezer to prevent sudden drops in temperature. Always label and store appropriately and make sure you have used sanitary methods of handling meats to avoid cross contamination. Grab your permanent marker, labels, masking tape and the basic freezer meal storage method of choice and start creating healthy meals for your family for every night of the week!