So you hit a great sale and stock your freezer up. But a few weeks or months later, you pull out your edibles and they’re covered in ice crystals. The sad phenomenon that causes unappealing, dried-out, discoloured food happens to the best of us.
We have five useful tips to make sure you never feel the (freezer) burn again.
1. Wrap your freezer-bound fare twice, with as little air as possible. First wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, then in a freezer bag, squeezing out as much air as you can.
2. Keep your cold storage well organized. That way, you don’t have to keep the door open for five minutes every time you look for something, avoiding temperature fluctuations as much as possible. If you’re shopping for a new unit, keep in mind that self-defrosting models are worse for freezer burn.
3. Don’t put hot foods directly in the freezer; let them cool first.
4. Keep your freezer full, but not too full. At about three-quarters capacity, the freezer is most efficient at maintaining its cool. Pack it more, and the air won’t circulate properly.
5. Invest in a vacuum-sealer. It sucks out all the air around the food before freezing, which makes a big difference in longevity.
Although colour, texture and taste all suffer when freezer burn strikes, it does not render the food inedible — it’s still perfectly safe. To rescue freezer-burnt provisions, try concealing it in flavourful mixed dishes with lots of liquid, like stews, a bolognese, or barbecue sauces.
Looking for more kitchen tips? Learn our top 20 Life-Changing Freezer Hacks.