Share on ThriftyFunThis guide contains the following solutions. Have something to add? Please share your solution!
I needed organization and room in my freezer. I use quart size freezer bags for storing all foods (I live alone, you can use gallon size for family). The trick here is to fill the bag per portion you want, holding the opening up so food does not spill out. Lay the bag on the counter and release as much air from the bag as you can. Lay the top part over the rest of the bag and zip shut. When stacking these in the freezer, alternate the way you lay the bag so it will flatten out better. You can store double the amount in the freezer, plus you will be able to see the food much better.
By sleepygrandma from Lincoln, NE
My freezer purrs like a kitten!
When I go away at Xmas for two weeks to visit family, I make sure to completely defrost my freezer. The food is given away to someone in my local Freecycle and the freezer is completely turned off for two of those weeks.
When I come home, it's time to give my freezer a good wash through then back on with the electric and a 'big shop' at my freezer food store.
But here's my little trick. To save the build up of ice: after I have washed and dried the insides of my freezer, I coat the walls and shelving runners with a good smearing of glycerin. Glycerin is available cheaply in your local pharmacy.
No ice build up and I extend the life of my freezer as it's not working so hard. It purrs like a kitten all year long! =^..^=
When you bring your fresh meat home (wrapped and in a plastic bag with the opening at the top), place it in the coldest part of your refrigerator, usually the bottom right side. Check the time and start counting the days from the time you put it into the refrigerator. Fresh (and frozen meat) is usually good for three days in the refrigerator. Meanwhile, start making meals with things you already have in your freezer and keep checking for space to put some of the fresh meat into, not the thawing frozen meat.
Plan out the menus using the fresh meat. On the second or third day (whichever is most convenient for you), begin cooking your fresh meat dinners, even if that means cooking in the morning of the third day and making two or three meals at the same time. Serve portions of one or more of these for that days dinner, if you like, or put them into a covered container and put them back in the refrigerator, thus buying you three and a half more days to use them. During that time, you can keep checking the freezer for space to store some of these ready-made meals. You can also reheat the entire meal so that it bubble/simmers for five minutes, refresh the seasoning a bit and then keep it for another three days.
Last week, I came home with a pound of ground beef and three pounds of breakfast sausage, planning to portion out several meals and forgetting I had no more space in my freezer. I use breakfast sausage for pizza, it is yummy. So, today (two and a half days later), I made porcupine meatballs with the ground beef and a huge batch of pizza sauce. I had some PP meatballs for dinner and will put the pizza sauce in the refrigerator. I know everybody about will help me eat the meatballs and the kids will snarf up a lot of the pizza sauce for themselves and their friends making toast pizza (buttered toast, some mozzarella and the thick meaty sauce, MW or heat in oven.) In three days, it will all be gone, save anything I was able to fit into the freezer for future snacks and meals. I confess that I sometimes hide portions of the pizza sauce for myself to snack on. No one bothers to look in the freezer; they assume that all the goodies are in the refrigerator.
Hint: If you put pizza sauce into a plastic bag and flatten and shape it into a blob the size of a piece of bread, it makes for easier toast pizza.
Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.
How long can you keep meats, vegetables, natural lemon juice, and fruits in the freezer?
You should not keep anything longer than 6 months. Commercial freezers can reach lower temps than home freezers.
There are a few factors that determine this. Here's a link that will give you the information you're looking for along with sublinks for more details:
I am looking for a freezer list, the life of the foods you can keep in your freezer, meats, bread, fruit, etc.
Can you help me?
Here is a site I have found helpful...scroll to the bottom for the index of the foods:
Also, here is a link for the shelf life of pantry items in case you are interested:
Just because it may say that "..." is only good for 6 months doesn't mean that at the 6 1/2 months it is bad. Just check it.
With meat, the more fat in it the quicker it goes rancid. Pork and beef are bad for that, whereas venison can literally stay for years. Also, if the meat is tightly wrapped, no air getting next to it, it does not get freezer burn spots.
If the item is water packed or in a sauce it will not get freezer burnt like individual pieces would. For example, mashed raspberries in a container will stay for years and yet the individual raspberries I would use before the following summer.
No need to throw out something just because a "list" says it is bad. You paid for it and ...Just check the item and ...if it has freezer burn spots, for example, on meat, cut them off and see what the meat is like...probably can be used. Bread...goes hard and I would throw it out. Items in the bottom of the freezer will stay good longer than at the top, where the temperature fluctuates because you're opening and closing the lid all the time.