Food

Simple Freezer Hacks Every Cook Should Know

Nothing is worse than rotten food. Whether it’s leftovers from a recently cooked meal, or simply food that hasn’t been eaten, there’s a sense of guilt and regret that comes with each opening and closing of the garbage can. Not only are you losing money, but you’re also creating waste – a double whammy.

Luckily, many of us have a handy kitchen appliance, the freezer, to help us extend the lifetime of our food. By sealing food properly and sticking it in the freezer, you’re helping to stretch your buck and your food supply. 

Try these simple tricks to save more and waste less!

Fresh Herbs

Cooking with fresh herbs is oftentimes a luxury. Because we naturally like variety in our weekly meals, its hard to use the whole bundle before it begins to go bad. To keep from having waste-guilt, Rachael suggests adding your herbs to delicious sauces like pesto or marinara and throwing it in the freezer. Simple, easy, and darn delicious. 

Another pro tip from Rach: Freeze pesto in ice cube trays so you can grab as much as you need for your next recipe. The cubes are great flavor-boosters when added to soups, stews, and pastas!

Bread

Down to the end slices of your bread? Stash them in the freezer. When you find yourself hunting in your pantry for panko, simply open the freezer and retrieve the heels, pop them into a food processor, and voila! You’ve saved yourself a grocery trip and made your very own homemade bread crumbs.

Make-ahead Meals

For those times when you want to bulk up on dinners for the week, the freezer is your best friend. Lasagna, chili, and mac ‘n cheese are awesome options to whip up when you have some extra time on your hands. Follow Rachael’s tip for deciding what recipes to try: “Basically, make anything you’d find in the frozen-food section of the grocery store!”

Vegetables & Fruits

Eating seasonal is something we support. To make this freezer tip effective, buy more than you need of the produce you love when it’s in season. Veggies freeze especially well: Blanch them in salted, boiling water, cool them completely, pop them into a bag and keep them in the freezer. That way, you have prime produce at a fraction of the cost you’d be paying for it out of season.

Have a few tips we didn’t mention? Let us know on Facebook

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Rachael Ray