Shopping expert offers tips on using freezer to cut grocery bills

POSTED: Sunday, July 15, 2012 - 1:00pm

UPDATED: Sunday, July 15, 2012 - 1:04pm

Meat doesn't have to go to waste.

Teri Gault is founder and CEO at thegrocerygame.com and said the meat want go to waste if it is stored properly.

"As long as the purchase date is current when you freeze it," Gault stated.

According to Gault, the US Department of Agriculture says it can be safe to freeze meat for three months.

It can be kept in its original packaging but if you want to stretch that storage time, double wrap it.

"Mark the date on the package with a permanent marker. The best way to freeze anything is with a vacuum  sealer," Gault stated. "That would be almost indefinite because remember air is the enemy of the food it's going to cause the freezer burn."

Remember the longer it stays in the freezer Gault said it will lose quality, texture, and flavor over time.

Fruits like strawberries can be stored up to three months.

"You prepare them just the way you want to eat them whole," Gault explained. "Take the stems off and then you can put them into a plastic bag without any air. And they will be good for about three months."

And for diary items.

"They're going to change consistency. Cheese you want to grate before freezing,"Gault said. "And seal it with no air in it."

Thawing items properly is as just as important as storing them the correct way.

Especially when food has been frozen for months. 

"The best way to thaw any food is by taking it straight from the freezer and in to your refrigerator," Gault added.

Keep an inventory of what's in the freezer.

Lynda Baquero reporting.

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