Author Topic: Meal freezer storage containers?  (Read 9335 times)

Luck better Skill

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Meal freezer storage containers?
« on: May 25, 2013, 07:00:59 AM »
  Have been reading lots on once a month cooking and such.  I sure it will help my food budget to cook and freeze food.  Lots of information on how to prepare and do the cooking.  Large void on how best to store against freezer burn.  My Google-fu is weak.

  I was thinking of getting Pyrex plastic containers to store most food in.  This would require some upfront cost but plastic should be reusable for years and provide a heating/eating dish at work.  And perhaps vacuum packing a few entries for longer frozen storage.

  Any advice?  Experience?

aj_yooper

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2013, 07:04:35 AM »
Dr. Oz recommends pyrex or silicone containers.  Heating up in the plastic yields off-gassing.

jfer_rose

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2013, 07:11:06 AM »
I finally bought freezer canning jars for this purpose. I had been considering getting pyrex or other glass storage containers, but the mason jars are just SO much cheaper. Unlike regular mason jars, which have a neck, the freezer mason jars are wide mouthed all the way to the top. I got them at the hardware store and it was about $12 for a dozen. Used they would have been even cheaper.

footenote

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2013, 07:40:24 AM »
My go-to is ziploc freezer storage bags. I freeze them flat and defrost the bricks in the refrigerator for a day or two before using. (I never heat food in the ziplocs.)

Here are more ideas and options: http://onceamonthmom.com/works-for-me-wednesday-freezing-containers/

mustachecat

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2013, 11:22:51 AM »
I also use Ziploc freezer bags for raw ingredients and just suck the extra air out.

For cooked foods, I have two sets of Snapware Glasslock containers from Costco. The tops are BPA-free plastic and the bodies are oven-safe tempered glass. I usually partially defrost them in the microwave in the morning, sans lid, and heat up the rest whenever I'm ready to eat. I've been very pleased with them.

Luck better Skill

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2013, 07:27:32 PM »
Forgot, thanks all for the information.

gooki

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2013, 03:36:22 AM »
We use these at home. Cheap enough, versatile, reusable, and easy to remove the meal from the container should you not want to heat it in the container for some reason.

http://sistemaplastics.com/

Rebecca Stapler

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2013, 07:51:11 AM »
My go-to is ziploc freezer storage bags. I freeze them flat and defrost the bricks in the refrigerator for a day or two before using. (I never heat food in the ziplocs.)


Ditto. Easier to protect against freezer burn because I'm terrible at guessing how much something will expand when it freezes.

anastrophe

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2013, 01:13:09 PM »
I use a combination of pyrex, freezer bags, and mason jars. Depends on what the item is: mason jars are great for soup and a waste of space for felafel, stuffed mushrooms are best in a ziplock, etc. The downside to this system is that it looks messy and can be hard to find things. A sheet on the freezer that tells me what's in there helps.

chc4444

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2013, 01:39:11 PM »
I try to avoid plastic. I freeze a lot and I do it in wide mouth mason jars. I freeze fruit by first freezing it on a cookie sheet and once  frozen transferring to wide mouth quart jars that way the fruit doesn't stick together and you can take any amount out of the jar that you need and put the rest back in the freezer. I freeze about 100 jars of blackberries, pitted cherries, peaches and raspberries this way every year. I also freeze a lot of soups and unsweetened applesauce in 1/2 pint and 1 pint wide mouth jars. We always have a wide selection of homemade soups available to have for lunch (1/2 pint per serving) or dinner (1 pint per serving). I do freeze these directly in the jars but leave about 1 inch of headroom and only put the flat lids on (not the rings) until they are completely frozen several days later. I label with a small piece of green frog tape on the lid listing soup name and date frozen. Claudia

tuyop

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2013, 02:06:42 PM »
I use ziploc bags.

The best way I've found to suck the air out is to follow these steps:

1. Fill the sink with water.
2. Slowly submerge the baggie in the water until all of the air has been forced out.
3. Close the baggie while underwater.

It takes a tiny bit of practice but it's pretty great.

mobilisinmobili

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2013, 03:57:11 PM »
I have Pyrex glass containers with locking lids.. a bit heavier for bringing to work and such.. but the durability, microwave ability (at work, can't microwave Mason Jars), and stackability in the freezer all make them the best choice for me.

pbkmaine

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2013, 03:59:10 PM »
I freeze in plastic but nuke in Corelle.

WhatMomWears

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2013, 06:43:33 PM »
I freeze a lot of meals (especially in the winter when I always have leftovers of sauces, soups and stews). Comes in so handy when I don't feel like cooking!

I use these Reditainer containers. They come in all sizes, are reusable but not so expensive that if they get 'funky' I feel guilty recycling them. Plus they're cheap enough that I can give away meals to people and not worry about getting my containers back. I will defrost in them on the counter or fridge but never, ever, reheat in plastic.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007V2TNOE/ref=wms_ohs_product?ie=UTF8&psc=1

ep114

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #14 on: May 30, 2013, 01:56:31 AM »
I freeze like crazy, and put everything in glass containers and love them. It's so much easier since I bought them.  I won't use plastic for health reasons, and they were also disorganized, would slide all over, would stain or shatter if I dropped them when taking them out of the freezer. It was just a mess. The glass square ones are really stackable and you can maximize your freezer space this way. I bought 2 big boxes of glass containers from Bed Bath and Beyond and they are more than enough. I keep my freezer completely full and  there's enough for extras for packing lunch, or leftovers for the fridge, etc.  I think they would have been $50, but I had coupons and some credit card points cash cards, so they were much less.  And they will last forever.

chc4444

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #15 on: May 30, 2013, 10:29:03 AM »
In defense of wide mouth glass pint and half pint mason jars.... they are about $1 each, they are microwaveable (just remove the metal lid and ring), they stack well in the freezer and they last forever and can be used for other things like canning or storage when we are done with them. Claudia

anastrophe

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #16 on: May 30, 2013, 10:51:46 AM »
In defense of wide mouth glass pint and half pint mason jars.... they are about $1 each, they are microwaveable (just remove the metal lid and ring), they stack well in the freezer and they last forever and can be used for other things like canning or storage when we are done with them. Claudia

They are also round, which is the most inefficient space. But otherwise, yes:)

MountainFlower

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Re: Meal freezer storage containers?
« Reply #17 on: May 30, 2013, 12:29:40 PM »
I bulk cook a lot and freeze in individual servings.  I probably have about 30-40 individual packets of food frozen right now from  3 oz servings of chicken to 1 pound servings of pre-cooked sausage and taco meat.  If i used containers, it would take up the whole freezer!  However, the mason jars are still a great idea for larger servings.  Going to think about that. 

I freeze individual servings in cheap sandwich baggies (about 1 cent each) and put those into a freezer ziploc.  I do not reheat in plastic.  I can usually get the plastic bag off or I try to remember to defrost ahead of time. 

Also, let me put in a plug for canning meats.  You must use a pressure canner.  The process could not be simpler.  Put meat in jar, add salt, can in canner.  Done.  The meat is tasty and tender.  The USDA site has directions.  I've canned chicken, beef stew, and beans.  This would be a great way to take advantage of a good sale on meat.   Lots of videos on youtube. 
« Last Edit: May 30, 2013, 12:31:42 PM by MountainFlower »