Avoid these Common Freezer Mistakes

frozen raspberries - refrigerator is freezing all my food

Freezers are essential for preservation, storage, and ice creation. However, this seemingly fool proof appliance actually has a few tricks to it. A lot of people make small mistakes when using the freezer, and these small mistakes add up and affect your food. Read these tips on preventing common mistakes so you can avoid them in your own freezer!

Do not over stuff the freezer. You should not be putting more than the recommended amount on any of the shelves, as this can cause uneven freezing. On the other hand, it is also not ideal to have an empty freezer. A full freezer holds the cold better, so if it is too empty, a lot of temperature will be lost when it is opened.

Be sure that the air vents are not being blocked by items. There should be a few inches of space around the air vents to promote circulation.

Check the Temperature. The freezer should be  0° or less. Any higher can cause some foods to spoil faster or not freeze thoroughly.

Properly Store Food for the Freezer. Empty air from bags and plastic wrap, and seal them all the way. Fill containers mostly full to help prevent freezer burn. If you open a food package but don’t use all of it, move the remainder to a seal-able bag.

Keep dates on food items-. Things have different lengths of time they can be in the freezer before expiring, but eventually everything loses its flavor and texture after being frozen for too long. Try rotating items so you can use the older ones first, and take inventory when you clean the freezer so you know what you have.

Don’t leave food out. The sooner you freeze something, the fresher and better it will taste when it is thawed out.

Prevent Clumping. When freezing small things like berries, first freeze them separated on a baking sheet, then transfer them to a bag. This will keep them from clumping together, and allow you to take out the desired amount easier later on.

Don’t Defrost on the Counter Top. Certain things, such as meat and poultry, can run the risk of growing harmful bacteria if left at room temperature to defrost. Instead, leave it in the fridge or microwave it to thaw it.

With these tips in mind, you should be able to confidently use the freezer like a pro!

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