A budget-friendly solution to saving money on your food bill is right in your kitchen – your freezer. Not only can it help keep food fresh for longer, but it can also save you money by preventing waste. Kate Hall, popularly known as The Full Freezer, shares some surprising foods that can be frozen to maximise their shelf life and minimise food waste.
Here are the surprising foods you can freeze:
With cheese prices soaring to around £8 per kg, freezing leftover cheese is a smart move. Kate advises grating hard cheese before freezing and using it directly from the freezer in cooking. It’s best to use frozen cheese within six to nine months.
Milk and Yoghurt
Don’t let excess milk and yoghurt go to waste. While these dairy products may separate when frozen, they can still be used in cooking or blended back together with a hand mixer. Kate suggests freezing Frubes yoghurts, which are perfect for kids as frozen dairy ice lollies or as a refreshing snack when defrosted in a lunchbox. Frozen milk should be used within six months, while yoghurts are best consumed within two months.
Surprisingly, potatoes can also be frozen. Kate recommends mashing them and freezing the mash in usable portions. When needed, simply heat the frozen mash in a pan straight from the freezer. Although frozen potatoes are safe to eat for longer, their quality may deteriorate after three months. Considering the UK wastes 4.4 million potatoes every day, freezing them instead of throwing them away can lead to significant savings.
Treats and Snacks
Don’t let stale biscuits or cakes go to waste. The freezer can revive them. Kate suggests slicing up cakes and freezing them individually before transferring them to a freezer bag. For crisps, popcorn, and biscuits, simply place them in a freezer bag and enjoy them straight from the freezer. Labelling the bags ensures easy identification. This is an excellent way to save money on kids’ lunchboxes or picnic snacks.
By utilising your freezer effectively, you can reduce food waste and save money. According to the Waste Resources Action Programme, the average family wastes £730 worth of edible food every year, which amounts to £60 per month. Freezing food can help save this £60 by avoiding the need to buy replacements for discarded items like bread, milk, fruit, and vegetables.
Kate shares her family’s experience of reducing their reliance on takeaways and expensive convenience foods by having a stash of ingredients in the freezer which can be quickly cooked from frozen. This change has allowed them to cut down their takeaway expenses from £20-£30 per week to just once a month.
Kate said: “Being able to save food by freezing it can help families to stretch their budgets further, and feel more in control when food shopping.
“Knowing that you can buy items in bulk for less per unit, and freeze the excess, is a useful way to make the most of your weekly shop.”
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