Expiration dates, nutrition myths, and superfood trends are all among our most frequent search queries. But one of the lesser-known research topics of a similar variety is what foods are safe to store in the freezer. So we decided to get the answers once and for all. We were pretty surprised by some of the foods that made the cut, and a bit disappointed about those that didn't secure a safe spot on our freezer shelves—we had a good run, cream-based sauce, but you have zero Netflix and chill. According to USDA Food and Nutrition Service, almost all foods aside from shelled eggs and canned items can be preserved in a freezer.
However, not all ingredients will defrost equally; some won't return to their original glory, while others don't taste as good or maintain their appetizing appearances... Lettuce, we're looking at you. The USDA also mentions that raw foods are more freezer-friendly than those that have already been cooked. With these findings in mind, we selected the most mouth-watering staples you can freeze and picked recipes that incorporate them. Below you'll find four dish ideas that taste just as fresh later as they do when you initially make them. Happy cooking ahead, with food you can enjoy at your leisure.
If you like pizza, (who doesn't?), then we have some good news for you. Unyeasted pizza dough is freezer-friendly. We suggest making a big batch of dough in one sitting and then freezing whatever you don't eat to make throughout the month. All you have to do is swap out different toppings and pop it in the oven. The labor-intensive part will already be taken care of, plus you'll be able to cater to your specific cravings as they come and go. The first flavor on our list to try is this spinach leek flatbread from Mitzy at Home.
This jalapeño hummus from Half Baked Harvest looks phenomenal, so we definitely wouldn't mind keeping this around the house to enjoy whenever we need a fix of chickpea dip. Hummus can last up to four months when frozen, however, taking it in and out of the freezer to de-thaw will diminish its flavor and heightens the risk of contamination, so try to keep those re-entries to a minimum.
Much like pizza dough, pasta is best frozen when fresh and uncooked. If you prepare some fresh pasta ahead of time—which is super fun and a lot easier than you'd except—you'll be able to prolong the yumminess for a long time. It's like the gift that keeps on giving... Plus, next time you're craving a homemade pasta dish, you won't have to settle for packaged noodles. You can follow the same boiling process, and just focus on whipping up a delicious sauce to serve with it. And nothing says "try me" like this vegan creamy miso sauce from The First Mess.
When it comes to soup, feel free to freeze the broth, but leave out any of the final embellishments and toppings. For example, tortilla crisps, croutons, herbs, garnishes, and cheeses. Sprinkle those additions on when it comes time to reheat the defrosted soup. Puréed soups are great options. Try this Thai carrot and sweet potato soup from Half Baked Harvest.