Freezing is a great way to preserve food, but there are some things that should never be frozen. Freezing certain foods changes their texture and flavor, and they’ll end up in the trash. So think of this list as a money-saver!
10 foods You Should Never Freeze:
- Lettuce and salad greens, including raw celery and cucumbers, lose their crispness and flavor when frozen due to their high moisture content. Store fresh salad greens in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator.
2. Raw, whole potatoes are best kept in a root cellar, or other cool, dry place, out of direct sunlight. Potatoes have a high water content and will become watery and mushy when frozen and then thawed.
3. Milk loses its smooth, creamy consistency when frozen. Milk should only be frozen if you will be using it as an ingredient when cooking, not for drinking. Milk can be frozen in ice cube trays to use in place of ice cubes when making blender smoothies, etc.
4. Yogurt. Even though we all love frozen yogurt, this isn’t the best way to get your fix! Regular and Greek yogurt become watery and lose their thick, creamy consistency when placed in the freezer and then thawed. Best eaten fresh.
5. Sour cream and cream cheese. Like other dairy products listed above, these products do not maintain their creamy textures when frozen. They separate and become watery.
6. Raw eggs in the shell will expand and break the shell open, causing the eggs to ruin. Raw eggs can be frozen, after removing each egg from its shell and placing it in a freezer container large enough for its liquid content to expand during the freezing process.
7. Cooked pasta and rice becomes mushy when frozen and then thawed. Sure, many frozen entrees contain these ingredients but they undergo a special process to maintain flavor. Best to refrigerate.
8. Bottled salad dressings and mayonnaise. It’s best to store these items in the refrigerator, otherwise, they separate and lose flavor.
9. Mayo-based salads (chicken, tuna, egg) do not freeze well and separate as well as lose their flavor. Just make what you need and refrigerate leftovers, or send them home with guests.
10. Carbonated drinks should be kept chilled only. If allowed to freeze, they will burst their containers and lose their fizz when thawed.
Deborah Tukua is a natural living, healthy lifestyle writer and author of 7 non-fiction books, including Pearls of Garden Wisdom: Time-Saving Tips and Techniques from a Country Home, Pearls of Country Wisdom: Hints from a Small Town on Keeping Garden and Home, and Naturally Sweet Blender Treats. Tukua has been a writer for the Farmers' Almanac since 2004.