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23 surprising foods you can freeze and how to Now on Healthy Eating
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Even fussy avocados can be frozen if you know the trick. (Photo: mama_mia/Shutterstock)

If the freezer brings to mind nothing but disconcerting TV dinners and soggy
vegetables, its time to rethink the unsung hero of the appliance world. The freezer is
a gift! It is the simplest device for preserving food and can be your ally in keeping
fresh things fresh and alleviating waste. And despite popular belief, freezing does not
lead to a decrease in nutrients. Aflac honors Jeff Foxworthy, others
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That said, it isnt friendly to all comestibles a fact that may have lead to its
Loose change turns into big
reputation as a mangler of good food. But with a little know-how you can use the
gains for nonprofit
freezer to your best advantage, even for foods that arent normally associated with
taking to a deep chill kindly. Here are some of the more surprising options. South Carolina doing its part to
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1. Avocados

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Storing slices of avocado in the freezer doesnt work perfectly, but freezing pureed
world's most ethical companies
avocado does. Add 1 tablespoon lemon or lime juice per avocado before pureeing to [Video]
ensure that the fruit doesn't discolor, then pack in an airtight container and freeze.
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2. Baked goods
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Although they may seem too fragile in texture, cookies, cupcakes, muns, brownies Trending on MNN
and the rest of the baked goods family can be frozen without detriment. If you store
them in resealable bags, you can sneak them out individually as needed.
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3. Bananas
2 detected in our galaxy. What
are they?
It may not be that surprising that you can freeze bananas, but what you can do with
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said frozen bananas is kind of astounding: Aside from being the perfect smoothie 3 camera, and it doesn't look
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ingredient, you can make this one-ingredient soft serve "ice cream" that really, really
tastes like ice cream. Its magic.
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4. Butter
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have in the U.S.
You might have already known you can freeze butter. But if you never thought about
it, go ahead and freeze your butter with reckless abandon. Freeze in blocks, sticks, or
6 Does 'Planet Nine' exist?
make pats for individual usage. This is good for when butter is on sale ... as well as for
always having an emergency supply on hand.

5. Bread

While commercial sandwich bread has the supernatural ability to stay fresh on your
counter for unusually long periods of time, freshly baked baguettes and the like are
not so happy after a day or two. All of it can go in the freezer and when it comes out,
its exactly as good as it was the minute it went in. If you cut baguettes into slices or
hunks prior to freezing, you can remove just as much as you need.

6. Buttermilk
If you only use buttermilk for baking, chances are you have leftovers. While thawed
buttermilk can separate like other dairy, it is still perfectly suitable for baking
afterwards. If you freeze it in measured amounts, you can then just remove the
amount the recipe calls for.

7. Cake

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Save some cake for a rainy day. (Photo: Nataliya Arzamasova/Shutterstock)

This is an awesome thing to know: Instead of being forced to eat an entire cake
before it gets stale, you can slice it, freeze the individual slices and remove them as
suits your sweet tooth. Some cakes are delicious eaten frozen, others may prefer to
thaw rst. Either way, you can have your cake and eat it too. (That said, icings with
egg whites may not fare so well.)

8. Chocolate
You can freeze chocolate without impunity! But chocolate is a fussy thing and
requires TLC. Wrap it well to keep it moisture-proof and resistant to picking up odors,
then and this is important put it in the refrigerator for 24 hours before putting it
in the freezer. On the way out, do the same: Let it rest in the fridge for 24 hours
before eating it. Quick changes in temperature do not a happy chocolate make, but
with gradual staging in-between all should be ne.

9. Citrus fruits

While fruits with a high water content generally suer for texture after being
subjected to the freezer, you can still freeze them. We are often left with an
abundance of citrus thanks to a productive tree or a crate of holiday clementines.
You can make juice and freeze it, or freeze the fruit. Heres what the National Center
for Home Food Preservation suggests: Wash and peel. Divide fruit into sections,
removing all membranes and seeds. Slice oranges if desired. For grapefruit with
many seeds, cut fruit in half and remove seeds; cut or scoop out sections. Pack fruit
into containers. Cover with cold 40 percent syrup made with excess fruit juice or
water. Leave some room, seal and freeze. (If you have too many clementines on
hand, you can also make this miraculous clementine cake one of the best cakes in
the world and freeze it.)

10. Cookie dough

If your cookie recipe leaves too many cookies laying around for indiscriminate eating,
you can always freeze part of the batch. Portion out the dough onto baking sheets
and freeze, then remove from the sheet and store in an airtight container in the
freezer.

11. Corn on the cob


Farm-fresh corn on the cob can be frozen as is, husk and all, in an airtight package.
For corn that is less-fresh than just-picked, husk the ears and blanch them in boiling
water form 7 to 11 minutes, depending on size. Cool quickly, dry them, and seal in an
airtight packaging before freezing.

12. Cream, heavy

While thawed once-frozen dairy isnt always pretty due to separation, you can
successfully freeze heavy cream containing 40 percent or more butterfat. First heat it
to 170 to 180 degrees for 15 minutes, cool it quickly and store in an airtight container.

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(To store it longer than two months, add 1/3 cup sugar per quart to aid in
stabilization.)

13. Cream, whipped

Never be without whipped cream for hot cocoa again. (Photo: Kati Molin/Shutterstock)

Freezing whipping cream to whip later wont yield a very sti topping, but you can
freeze already-whipped cream in individual garnishes. Place dollops on a baking
sheet and freeze, remove once frozen and store in a freezer container. These are
perfect for plopping on top of a mug of hot cocoa.

14. Eggs

Do not freeze eggs in their shells. You know how liquid expands when frozen? Do you
want oozy freezing eggs in your freezer? No. But you can free eggs from their shells,
whisk them, and freeze them that way. Use within one year for best quality.

15. Fruit pie


Yes, fruit pie can be frozen; but it is best done before baking. When it comes time to
bake, there is no need to defrost; put the frozen unbaked pie in a pre-heated oven at
425 degrees for 15 minutes, then reduce temperature to 350 degrees for the rest of
the recipes stated baking time, plus an additional 15 minutes.

16. Garlic
Garlic is exceedingly forgiving when it comes to being frozen. You can put a whole
bulb in an airtight container and pull o what you want as needed. You can peel
cloves and freeze them whole, or you can crush or slice them rst. You can also put
sliced garlic in olive oil and freeze that because the oil doesnt freeze you can then
spoon out as much garlic-infused oil as you would like.

17. Ginger

If you dont go through fresh ginger quickly, dont let it transform into a withered
avorless thing. A hunk of fresh ginger root can be put straight in the freezer as is

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(wrapped well) and grated, while still frozen, with much more ease than you would
think.

18. Grapes
Frozen grapes won't defrost into tidy versions of their formers selves, but a handful
of frozen grapes eaten frozen is a thing of wonder.

19. Herbs

Compound butters are a wonderful way to freeze fresh herbs. Photo: joannawnuk/Shutterstock)

Most fresh herbs wont be vivid and garnish-worthy after freezing, but they wont lose
their avor and can be used for cooking. Wash, drain and pat dry, then freeze in an
airtight container. You can also whip your herbs into pesto, just leave out the cheese
and add after thawing. But one of the best-kept secrets for freezing herbs is to make
a compound butter: Finely chop the herbs (in any combination, really, and add some
garlic, citrus or sea salt if you like) and blend them with softened butter; then roll into
a log, wrap and freeze. Slices of the frozen compound butter can brighten up just
about anything. Put a pat to melt on top of cooked meats, vegetables or soup; or
allow to soften for baguettes and so forth.

20. Milk

Freeze milk only if you dont plan on drinking it afterward because it may separate;
but for baking and cooking, it is ne!

21. Plain pasta


Most of us know that baked pasta like lasagna freezes well, but you can also freeze
plain cooked pasta if you have prepared too much, want to conserve on cooking
energy, or to simply save time. Remove the pasta from the pot just before it's done to
ensure it's not overcooked when reheating, allow it to cool, then freeze. It can then be
microwaved or thrown into a pot of hot sauce, and voila.

22. Rice and other grains


It's much easier to cook a huge pot of grains everything from rice and quinoa to

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23 surprising foods you can freeze and how to do it | MNN - M... http://www.mnn.com/food/healthy-eating/stories/23-surprising-...

barley and bulger in one fell swoop and then freeze smaller portions to reheat
later. You can either remove a packet in the morning and thaw in the refrigerator for
dinner, or go straight from the freezer to the microwave or a pot with a little liquid.

23. Sour cream

Freezing will cause separation which will be gross if you plan to use it on a baked
potato after thawing; but like milk, its great for baking.

Freezer friendliness
And now, a few items of business. While many foods turn out good as new when
frozen and defrosted, its important to keep some things in mind. The quicker your
freeze an item, the better the quality a slow freeze allows larger ice crystal to form
which can be detrimental to texture, therefore, put items to be frozen in the coldest
part of the freezer and dont stack them.

When it comes to normal defrosting, the USDA recommends three safe ways: in the
refrigerator, in cold water, or in the microwave. The best option is overnight (or
longer depending on the size of the item) in the fridge. For quicker thawing the item
can be securely wrapped and placed in cold water; make sure the water stays cold
and change it every 30 minutes. If using the microwave to defrost, plan to cook the
thawed food right away since some areas may be begin to cook during the
microwaving.

Related on MNN:

15 commonly refrigerated foods that don't need to be


20 uses for leftover fruit and vegetable peels
10 foods most people eat the wrong way

Related topics: Food Safety, Recipes

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