In a world where man has created enough plastic to completely coat the Earth (source), we need to play a part in helping to conserve our environment. Every little thing counts, so here we provide some tips on freezing without plastic – specifically freezer bags and plastic containers.
To keep food fresh, the right packaging material is very important. In general, you should only use materials which retain the moisture present in the food. What many people do not realise is that using the wrong packaging may cause your frozen goods to dry out more quickly at low temperatures, resulting in “freezer burn”. So, what’s to be done?
What Kind Of Packaging Is Best For Freezing?
Airtight sealable packaging is best for freezing. While the food is being stored, the removal of air and careful sealing of the packaging protects it from freezer burn, oxidation, and the penetration of microorganisms.
Optimal Features Of Frozen Food Packaging
- Food-safe: This is indicated by the “food safe symbol” or the “glass and fork symbol”.
- Cold-resistant: The packaging must not become brittle or porous, even at low temperatures.
- Heat-resistant and dishwasher-safe: This is important if the packaging is to be used multiple times.
- Airtight: Packaging should provide protection against the penetration of oxygen, moisture or aromas.
- Odourless and tasteless
- Resistant to fats, acids, and alkaline solutions
- Adaptable to the size of the frozen goods
- Suitable for particular defrosting processes (boiling water, microwave or oven)
- The right size and shape: If the packaging is flat, the cold penetrates quickly through to the centre of the packaging’s content.
The Best Alternatives To Plastic
Plastic freezer bags are convenient, but do we really want to further pollute the Earth?
Glass jars or bowls
Puree, compote, mash, soups or sauces and even fresh herbs and berries are suitable for freezing in jars with screw tops or glass containers. Our tip: When freezing liquids, jars must only be ¾ full otherwise they crack. Glass bowls with lids are also suitable for freezing food.
Stainless steel containers and cans
As with freezing in glass, liquid food should also not be filled up to the rim in stainless steel containers. The ¾ rule also applies in this case. The lid should not be sealed tight until the food is frozen. The advantage of stainless steel containers and cans over glass is that they cannot break.
Seasonal food in the freezer compartment without packaging
Depending on the food, you may also be able to dispense with packaging entirely when freezing, for example in the case of rhubarb or berries. Our tip: Just give it a quick clean before freezing and find a suitable space in the freezer compartment. However, this method is probably not advisable if you like to have a well-organised freezer compartment and don’t want frozen goods lying around loose. Another disadvantage is that this method is best suited to very short-term storage because it also causes the food to dry out. However, for longer-term storage in the freezer compartment, the food must always be packaged appropriately. This is because the food will not survive over the long term without its “protective layer” (see first two points above).
What Makes Poor Packaging Material For Freezing?
Cardboard, paper, soft cloth or cotton bags are unsuitable packaging material. With these materials, moisture can escape from your food and collect as ice in the colder sections of your freezer. This loss of moisture may cause the frozen food to become tough and dry.
For the perfect freezing conditions, check out Liebherr’s fridge-freezers today! Our signature NoFrost function is automatic, which doesn’t just save on energy consumption, but means you won’t have to defrost your freezer – ever!