Do you waste food by not eating it fast enough? Do you have a small family or maybe it’s just you at home – no need for big meals? In this post I’m talking about how to make your food budget stretch and save money by freezing bulk food in smaller portions as well as freezing your leftovers.
The main point of the post is breaking down bulk items into smaller portions so that you don’t have to constantly expose a big bag of whatever by opening it every time you need a little of it. Also, so you don’t have to use a whole bag of something that you don’t need at the moment.
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While you’re grocery shopping go ahead and pick up some freezer bags in quart size and gallon size. If you know you have a big meal coming up and are expecting leftovers be sure you put this on your to buy list. By freezing your leftovers you will be stretching your grocery budget and providing additional meals for another day down the road. It’s a great feeling to know you are not wasting good food and money.
Even though we don’t have a large family there are times when l buy in bulk to freeze. It’s really easy to separate food into smaller sections using smaller freezers bags. I’m going to share some of my tips.
How to Freeze Leftovers, Bulk Food and Broth
You’re going to need some supplies to freeze your food so it won’t spoil. I use plastic bags with the zipping feature as well as some plastic containers that I have on hand but this kind is probably better.
My favorite bags are Hefty or Ziplock. I prefer a brand names for certain products as I’ve not always had good luck with cheaper brands, generally speaking.
If you’re wondering how to freeze leftovers from big Thanksgiving and other holiday dinners I’ll share some tips for that too!
In this post I’m breaking down bulk meatballs and cheese into smaller portions. Doing so helps reduce the chance of wasting food as we’ll pull out what we need as we need it.
I can allow it to thaw slowly in the fridge or if I want to use it that day I will probably set it out on the counter till I’m ready to use it. Always be cautious with thawing out meat as you don’t want it to go bad.
You can also put your Thanksgiving leftovers into freezer bags or freezer containers basically the same way. If I’m out of freezer bags and only have storage bags I will at times use the storage bags and try to double bag. For example, I will pack smaller portions into a quart size baggie and then stick a few of those into a larger storage baggie.
3 Tips for Freezing Leftovers
You want to protect your food from getting freezer burn which is ice crystals accumulating on your food. Here are few quick tips for storing food in the freezer:
- use “freezer” bags if possible
- use a marker (like this) to date your bag
- store food towards the back of the freezer vs. the door of the freezer
How to Freeze Broth
A simple trick I’ve used for freezing broth is to place a large plastic baggie inside a (approx. 2 quart) pitcher like you see pictured above. You can make your own homemade bone broth and freeze for future use. Bone broth is VERY healthy for you. You can learn more about it here. Every so often I make bone broth.
I then pour the broth into the baggie and then I can lay it flat to freeze in my freezer. Use a gallon size for a large amount and a quart size freezer bag for a smaller portion.