I feel that our freezers are severely under-utilized with the amount of things you can freeze to make last longer! So much money is wasted from throwing out foods that have gone bad because you didn't have enough time to eat them. Money is also wasted (as well as your health) on grocery bought frozen foods when you could just make them yourself! So if you want to save money and eat more homemade foods, follow this list of 8 things you can freeze to make last longer!
1. Homemade Pancakes, Waffles, or French Toast
This is one of the things you can freeze to make last longer that can also save you money! If you're anything like me, then pancakes, waffles, or french toast are a staple in your freezer! But instead of shoveling out money for store bought frozen breakfast treats, why not save on some cash (and preservatives) by making your own? Make up a few batches over the weekend for quick “defrost and go” breakfasts during the week! Simply freeze on a cookie sheet, then toss them in a freezer bag. Reheat in the microwave, toaster, or toaster oven.
This is my absolute favorite thing to freeze, especially in the summer time! Anything from bananas to grapes you can freeze and take out when you need them! You can also keeping “smoothie bags” in the freezer that are filled with fruit to throw into a blender for a quick smoothie! Or, freeze blueberries, cherries, or grapes for an ice alternative in your drinks!
If you've been wanting to start packing lunches for school or work but don't seem to have the time in the morning, why not freeze them? Just take a sandwich out of your freezer in the morning, throw it into your bag, and it will be thawed by lunch time! Everything from peanut butter & jelly or honey, to deli meat and cheeses work well. You can also freeze butter or mustard but NOT the mayo, lettuce or tomato! Be sure to pack those separately or add them in the morning. You can freeze breakfast sandwiches as well!
4. Potato Chips, Crackers and Pretzels
I have actually never seen someone do this yet, but believe it or not you can freeze your snacks! If there's a big sale and you want to stock up on your favorite chips, crackers or pretzels, don't be afraid to buy a bunch and throw them in the freezer! In fact, people have said that frozen potato chips actually taste better if you eat them straight from the freezer. They are crisper and the flavors pop more!
There's nothing quite like using fresh herbs in your meals over the dried-out preserved ones. Freeze fresh herbs in ice-cube trays with chicken or vegetable stock for easy use in soups, stews, and casseroles! It will save you time while cooking as well as make your meals taste 10 times better and fresher!
You can freeze milk, cheese of any kind (just slice, shred or cube before freezing so it won’t crumble), cream cheese, and even yogurt. To use frozen milk, let thaw, and then shake well before opening to make sure any solids are remixed. You can also freeze buttermilk, which is a real lifesaver as the majority of us don't need to use it every day or even every week!
It may be hard to believe but eggs can be frozen raw or cooked! You just can't freeze them in the shell. Simply crack your eggs into a freezer safe container or bag to store in your freezer. It's not best to freeze hard boiled egg whites but you can however freeze hard boiled egg yolks! When you’re ready to use frozen eggs, thaw them overnight in the refrigerator or under running cold water.
8. Bread and Baked Goods
When your favorite bread is on sale, stock up and freeze it! Or when you’re in a baking mood, make extras of your favorite baked goods and freeze them for later. When you want to defrost, place them in your microwave overnight. It will keep them from drying out like they do on the counter. You can also freeze all kinds of homemade dough – shaped in a ball and wrapped in saran wrap. Or you can also freeze canned biscuits, crescent rolls, pizza dough, etc., right in the tube!
From buying in bulk, to saving leftovers, storing your food in the freezer can really save you money and time! The best way to freeze food is to segment portions of it into muffin or ice cube trays, or even zip-lock bags. This way it's easier to grab and go, or grab and cook! What do you love to keep in your freezer?