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Freezers After 40

by Nikki Willhite

Have you ever read an article about saving money on food by using a freezer and thought that article was just for frugal people with lots of children at home? It is my experience that quite the opposite is true. Freezers save a bunch of money, and are very convenient, especially for empty nesters and those who live alone.

Even when I had all my children at home, I hesitated putting too many items that needed to be frozen in the freezer. We lose power where we live, and having to throw away food after an extended energy outage is painful!

However, here is way to safely save money with a freezer. You can make good use of a freezer for things that do not necessarily have to be frozen. Let me give you some examples.

I like to shop at Costco. The savings and the quality of their food there is unsurpassed in our area. However, Costco sells things in quantity. What will happen if I bring home a couple of large bag of cookies and put them in my cupboard? Either I am going to gain a significant amount of weight, or they are going to get stale.

However, I can put them in my freezer and they will last for months. If the power goes out, it is no big deal. They will be fine outside the freezer, and when the power returns, the cookies will also return to the freezer. I will always have my cookies at hand, and they will always be fresh. In the case of the cookies, I can take them out and they will be ready to eat in just a few minutes.

Cookies are one food product I don't usually buy at the store, as my husband loves to make them. However, the same thing is true with the cookies he bakes. After eating one of them, they go into the freezer.

We have found this to be true with many other foods. We keep all our crackers, bread and pastry in the freezer. When we make bread, we cut a piece or two, and then put the rest in the freezer, where it comes out as fresh as it went into the freezer when we want to eat it.  Of course, it does take longer to defrost as we don't slice it before we freeze it.

We keep some things in the freezer you wouldn't think could be frozen, like vitamins and nutritional supplements. Sometimes we have to read the labels or "Google" whether we can freeze them, but so far we've found that most things can be frozen.

We freeze yeast, and it stays active. We freeze large cans of nuts and seeds and it keeps the oil from going rancid. We freeze my favorite fiber bars, and candy...for the grandchildren :-) Anything that can be frozen goes in the freezer.

Obviously I freeze some things that need to be kept frozen, like meats and ice cream. However, the best use I have found for my freezer at my age is just keeping things fresh and the opportunity to save money buying larger quantities of items at lower prices.

I have become so used to fresh foods, that I do not even like to keep anything out overnight.  I notice the difference in the freshness.

So my husband and I can buy items on sale or in bulk, freeze them, and they are always available to us. It is both a convenient and a frugal way for a couple of people trying to save money on food. Don't overlook the money-saving potential of your freezer at any age. Freezers are for the frugal!

About the Author: Nikki Willhite, mother of 3 and an interior design graduate, has been writing and publishing articles on the topic of frugal living for over a decade. Visit her at www.frugalhappyfamilies.com - where you will find hundreds of frugal living tips and articles. Frugal Happy Families- more than just money! 


 

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