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I have a giant new freezer and dreams of batch cooking - what containers?

(16 Posts)
AalyaSecura Fri 21-Apr-17 16:42:31

After muddling through with three small drawers in a fridge freezer, I today have a big upright freezer just waiting for stuff. I'd love to do a lot more bulk buy and freezing, and batch cooking, and saving leftovers, but my tupperware is a bit more local takeaway than Lakeland - what should I treat myself to for freezer storage? (That sounds v sad, but hey, it's Housekeeping, you understand...)

Happyhippy45 Fri 21-Apr-17 16:53:58

I use a mix of takeaway type containers from the £shop and the foil trays for things like shepherds pie/lasagne (I don't have a microwave.)
I also use freezer bags to freeze things like soup/sauces/curry.
I use large freezer bags for things that I open freeze like portions of mash/roast potatoes/fish cakes/breaded chicken etc.

I don't buy expensive tubs because I've found even the more expensive ones wear out/split at the same rate as cheaper ones but work just as well.

Happy cooking!

MiltopMighty Fri 21-Apr-17 16:59:09

I second freezer bags! You don't have to wash them and they take up a lot less space and you can usually tell what's inside them without the faff of labelling (I'm a lazy batch cooker)

MongerTruffle Fri 21-Apr-17 17:00:03

For things like Bolognese sauce I use zip-seal bags and flatten them out for quicker defrosting.
For soups I use Tupperware boxes or these containers, then just defrost and reheat in the microwave.
For dishes that like lasagne I freeze them in oven and freezer safe roasting trays.

Anything which doesn't need to be prepared before freezing stays in its packaging.

MongerTruffle Fri 21-Apr-17 17:01:04

*For dishes like

Happyhippy45 Fri 21-Apr-17 17:50:29

Yeah I'm an undisciplined batch cooker too. I always think "Of course i
I'll remember what's in this tub/bag. I don't need to label it!"
Chicken stock looks the same as lemon juice.
Bolognase looks exactly like chilli.
I think it's called freezer roulette.

MiltopMighty Fri 21-Apr-17 17:54:01

Yes, and I found out that a bag of lentil and chorizo sofrito doesn't mix well with a bag of ham and beans. Even though they may look the same when frozen. Now I thaw all bags separately before throwing them into the microwave - just in case.

ScarlettFreestone Fri 21-Apr-17 17:56:04

Stand and pour freezer bags, foil tins for lasagne or cottage pie or really cheap Morrisons plastic 1l tubs.

My experience is that more expensive tubs don't necessarily last longer.

ScarlettFreestone Fri 21-Apr-17 17:56:32

And yes, marking them is vital!

mybrainhurtsalot Fri 21-Apr-17 19:47:34

I have the small and medium stack a boxes from Lakeland (bought when half price) and they are great. V sturdy and the lids are all interchangeable. They are also v handy for organising batteries, sewing stuff etc.

I want more, but am holding out for them to go on offer again:

Boxes

NotSoSkinnyNow Fri 21-Apr-17 20:04:00

Another fan of bags here! Ikea ones have a double seal, and are so cheap. The purple ones seem to be strongest.
Flatten them and expel all the air..... quicker defrosting, and takes up less space in the freezer. Use a sharpie to write on the bag.....saves labels falling off (I'm looking at you lakeland freezer labels shock)
I also tend to write it across the top of the bag, above where the seal is. This means I can flick through the stack of bags to find what i'm looking for, rather than pulling all the bags out iyswim. It's like looking at the tabs on files in a filing cabinet.

didireallysaythat Fri 21-Apr-17 20:20:51

I prefer take away boxes. I hate cleaning bags out - any tips ?

Happyhippy45 Fri 21-Apr-17 20:39:22

I clean out bags inside out in the dishwasher, then wash by hand.
I've tried just handwashing but the food smell stays on them and they can be a bit greasy.
I've tried just dishwashing them but they still end up with food on them.

NotSoSkinnyNow Fri 21-Apr-17 20:41:31

Take the frozen stuff out of the bag before defrosting. If you have flattened it, its easy enough to snap the block of bolognaise/curry/soup into smaller bits then dump it into a pot for defrosting & heating.

Just make sure you check for leaks before re-using grin this is why I prefer ikea ones....just a pity the closest one is 3 hours away sad

mybrainhurtsalot Sat 22-Apr-17 11:35:14

I use ikea bags in conjunction with my Lakeland boxes, but find the ikea bags are leaky so I don't use them for anything v liquid like stock/soup etc.

What a genius idea to label the top above the seal, NotSo.

didireallysaythat Sat 22-Apr-17 20:58:44

Oooh. Hadn't thought of putting the bags n the dishwasher. Doh !

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