One of the most common questions I hear from people
who are interested in freezer-meal cooking is: "How
know what will freeze well, and what won't?"
If you're unsure of how well something will freeze,
a single serving when you prepare the dish for a
family meal. This way you can check on how well the
item holds up to freezing and reheating.
The following lists should give you a good start at
potential freezing problems with various food items.
DON'T FREEZE WELL:
--Greasy foods (they just become greasier)
--Cake icings made with egg whites
--Cream fillings and soft frostings
--Pies made with custard or cream fillings
--Fried foods (they tend to lose their crispness and
--Fruit jelly on sandwiches may soak into the bread
--Soft cheese, such as cream cheese (can become
--Mayonnaise (it separates; use salad dressing
--Sour cream (it becomes thin and watery)
--Potatoes cooked in soups and stews (they become
mushy and may darken. If using potatoes, cook until barely
soft and still firm; then freeze quickly.)
CHANGE DURING FREEZING:
--Gravies and other fat-based sauces may separate
and need to be recombined by stirring or processing in the
--Thickened sauces may need thinning after freezing;
thin with broth or milk
--Seasonings such as onions, herbs and flavorings
used in recipes can change during freezing. These are best
added during reheating to obtain accurate flavors
--Vegetables, pastas and grains used in cooked
recipes usually are softer after freezing and reheating
(undercook before freezing, or add when dish is reheated)
--Heavy cream can be frozen if used for cooking, but
will not whip
--Some yogurts may suffer texture changes
--Raw vegetables lose their crispness, but can be
used for cooking, stews, etc.
--Many cheeses change texture in the freezer. Most
hard cheeses turn crumbly (which makes them okay for
grating, but not for slicing)
Deborah Taylor-Hough (wife and mother of three) is
the author of the bestselling book, 'Frozen Assets: How
to cook for a day and eat for a month,' and the new
book, 'Frugal Living For Dummies(r)' (Wiley, 2003).
on this article or submit your tip to CreativeHomemaking.com.
for a printer friendly version of this page.
Follow me on Pinterest
Receive new article links via Twitter
Follow Creative Homemaking on Facebook
this article to a friend!
our article archives.
to subscribe to our weekly newsletter.