How Long Do You Freeze Food?

To be honest, while I don’t have a definitive answer to that question, I can tell you from experience that it’s at least 7 years!

We have two deep freezers and try to keep them stocked with the foods that we eat on a daily basis. We’ve tried freezing nearly everything: meat, milk, cheese, bread, veggies, etc. Not everything we’ve tried freezing was successful, but it’s actually surprising how long food can be preserved by freezing.

Vacuum Sealed Chicken from 2005

Vacuum Sealed Chicken from 2005

The trick is to make sure that there is as little air around the food as possible. If the food already has a vacuum sealed package or is frozen, we’ll just stick it in the freezer, otherwise it needs to be re-sealed. This is where your vacuum sealer can come in very handy.

Some food, like those already sealed with no air (whole turkeys, whole chickens, ribs, and other cuts of meat, cheese, etc.) can be put into the deep freeze as is. We’ve had pretty good luck with these. Whole turkey and chicken that was frozen for 3 years tasted great. We’re currently eating Tillamook cheese that was frozen in the factory vacuum seal from 2006. We’ve even had milk that was frozen over 9 months that was just fine after thawing and shaking/mixing it back up.

Using the bags to vacuum-seal meat, we’ve also had really great success. Just this month, we had chicken, beef and pork that was sealed back in 2005 (it’s older than my children!), and sausage from 2009. Using the vacuum sealer can really save you money, especially if you buy your meat when it’s cheaper (like in bulk).

Not everything freezes well, though. Sadly, bacon doesn’t seem to take well to being frozen. Neither does anything that isn’t sealed tightly around the food. Surprisingly, bread freezes fairly well for up to a few months, even though it’s still in its original, loose bag. The trick to defrosting bread is to let it thaw naturally and let it reabsorb some moisture. If you try to warm up the slices in the microwave, it doesn’t come out nearly as good.

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4 Responses to How Long Do You Freeze Food?

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