When you have a fridge full of food and see things getting moldy and old, it’s like throwing away dollars to toss this stuff out. Same goes for expired foods in your pantry. To save money and shop less and keep your food items longer, follow these easy and quick tips to have your food and use it before it goes bad.
Breads, muffins, pastries, and bagels can be frozen so they don’t mold or harden in the pantry. We buy these things in bulk and only open one bag at a time, and for bread-type foods that don’t get eaten right away (like bagels and English muffins) we take one out of the freezer and then place the remaining bag back in the freezer so we can use them later without them spoiling. You can freeze these items up to a month without worrying about freezer burn so long as you seal the bag properly.
Cheese can be frozen as well. We buy large blocks of cheese and cut them into smaller blocks, freezing all but one. Place in a double-seal zipper bag and you can enjoy cheese for a long time. The longer cheese sits in the freezer, the more it ages, increasing the taste. You can also freeze pre-shredded bags of cheese, and use them as you need them. They thaw within a few hours. A great way to stop throwing out moldy cheese. You can freeze cheese in all forms for up to 3 months.
If you have leftovers that won’t be eaten within 48 hours, freeze what is left in storage containers that are airtight. This way, you can pull out a quick meal when you don’t have time to cook. Just pop frozen casseroles, soups, stews, or any dish in the microwave. You can store leftovers for about a month.
Store lettuce in your fridge buy placing it in a container with ice water. This is how restaurants keep their salad bar lettuce fresh even if it was cut days in advance. Makes your lettuce keep its flavor and crunch longer in your fridge.
You can freeze milk, you just have to let it thaw for about 24 hours first and shake it very well to get the consistency back to normal as much as you can. It will be a bit clumpy, so freeze milk with the intention of cooking with it later rather than drinking. You can freeze milk for about a month.
When you buy products, get them in the latest expiration date you can find. Especially for barely used products, like flour, sugar, and other baking items, and spices. This way you can keep them longer.
For cereals, don’t leave them in the open bag in the box. Transfer cereals to large zipper bags and label them the type of cereal for longer use.
Store cottage cheese, yogurts, cream cheese containers and sour cream upside down in the fridge. This way, oxygen can’t get to the product after opening, which prevents bacteria and mold from forming right away. You can eat these items often after the use-by date so long as they have not soured or molded. A great way to keep large sour cream containers longer.
Buy spaghetti sauce in resealable containers rather than the cans. This way you can store the unused portions in the fridge rather than having to use all the sauce at once.
Keep opened pastas fresher longer by placing them in airtight storage containers or plastic bags after opening to prevent that whitish look they get and that stale taste.
Keep frozen foods fresher longer by having them bagged tightly or in airtight containers to avoid the freezer burn taste that makes us throw stuff out.
Clean your fridge and freezer often to avoid your food getting that fridge taste. Place an open box of baking soda in your fridge to absorb odors.
Just a few tips to keep your food longer, shop less, and save money!