Yes, most Ziploc Tupperware containers are freezer-safe and can be safely stored in the freezer. The freezer-safe Ziploc containers will be labeled as such on the packaging. As long as you use freezer-safe Ziploc containers, they provide an effective way to freeze and store foods.
Can All Ziploc Containers Go in the Freezer?
Not all Ziploc containers are suitable for freezing. Here are some guidelines on which Ziploc containers can go in the freezer:
Ziploc Freezer Bags
Ziploc freezer bags are specifically designed for freezing. They are constructed with thicker plastic that resists cracking even at very cold freezer temperatures. Any Ziploc bag that is labeled “freezer” on the packaging can safely go in the freezer.
Ziploc Cold Temperature Containers
In addition to freezer bags, Ziploc makes round plastic containers that are marked as “cold temperature” containers. These are made with plastic that can withstand freezing temps without becoming brittle. As long as they are marked for cold temperatures, these Ziploc containers can go directly from the freezer to microwave for easy meal prep.
Ziploc Snap N Seal Containers
The Snap N Seal line of Ziploc plastic containers are also freezer-safe. Key things to check are that it is either marked as a freezer container or at least cold temperature safe. As long as the specific container says it can handle freezing, it can go in the freezer.
Ziploc Sandwich and Snack Bags
Regular Ziploc sandwich and snack bags that do not have any cold temperature or freezer labeling should be avoided in the freezer. The thinner plastic on these bags can become brittle and crack open at freezing temperatures. For freezing, opt for the thicker freezer bag options.
Proper Steps for Freezing with Ziploc Containers
Here are some tips on safely and effectively freezing foods in Ziploc containers:
1. Ensure it is a Freezer-Safe Ziploc Product
Again, double check that the specific Ziploc container you want to use is clearly marked as freezer or cold temperature safe. Not all Ziploc products meet these requirements.
2. Remove as Much Air as Possible
Limit the air in the container to reduce ice crystal formation. The more air, the more ice crystals can form which impacts food texture and flavor. Squeeze out excess air before fully sealing bags. You can use a straw to suck out air from Ziploc bags too.
3. Fill Containers Between 3/4 to Completely Full
Don’t overstuff containers, but also don’t leave too much empty space. This helps minimize air pockets. Freezer bags can be laid flat to condense contents.
4. Seal Bags and Containers Securely
Zipper seals and snap lids should be completely closed and secure. Open corners or edges can lead to freezer burn. Double check seals before freezing.
5. Remove as Much Packaging as Possible
For food items, take them out of boxes, plastic wrappers, bags etc. The closer the food is to the freezer surfaces, the faster and more safely it will freeze.
6. Pre-Freeze Liquids in Ice Cube Trays First
Liquids like soup stock or tomato sauce should be frozen in ice cube trays first. Then transfer to containers. This prevents the liquid from freezing into a solid chunk.
7. Place in Coldest Zone of Freezer
The back top area of freezers tend to be the coldest zone. Placing containers here will make contents freeze fastest.
8. Label Containers with Contents and Date
Use a permanent marker or freezer tape to write what’s inside and the freeze date. This prevents mystery frozen foods.
9. Don’t Overfill the Freezer
Leave some space between Ziploc containers and other frozen items. Overstuffed freezers won’t maintain ideal freezing temperatures.
What Foods Can Be Frozen in Ziploc Bags and Containers?
Many foods freeze well in Ziploc freezer bags or containers when following proper freezing guidelines:
Raw meat like beef, pork, chicken, turkey and other proteins are commonly frozen in Ziploc bags. Lay bags flat to condense. Try to exclude as much air as possible.
Prepared Meals and Casseroles
Leftovers or prepared dishes like lasagna, stew, chili, and mac and cheese all freeze well in Ziploc freezer bags or containers. Portion into serving sizes before freezing.
Most vegetables like green beans, corn, peas, spinach, broccoli and more can be successfully frozen in Ziploc bags or containers. Blanch vegetables first.
Berries, chopped fruit and bananas for smoothies can be frozen in Ziploc bags. Citrus peels also freeze well. Some fragile fruits don’t handle freezing as well.
Breads, cookies, muffins and other baked goods can be frozen in Ziploc bags or containers. For best results, pre-bake some items like cookie dough before freezing.
Sliced or shredded hard cheeses like cheddar, swiss and parmesan freeze nicely in Ziploc bags. Exclude as much air as possible.
Sauces and Soups
Homemade or store bought sauces and soups freeze very well in Ziploc bags and containers. Leave some head space for expansion.
Stock and Broth
Homemade or canned stocks and broths should be portioned into ice cube trays before transferring to freezer bags or containers for easy use.
Fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme, sage, mint and more can be frozen in Ziploc bags with some water to cover. Basil does not freeze well.
Tips for Freezing Specific Foods in Ziploc Bags
Here are some additional tips for freezing specific items in Ziploc freezer bags:
– Place raw meat in single layer in freezer bag to freeze flat
– If freezing multiple bags, stack with parchment paper between to easily separate
– Allow to cool fully before freezing
– Freeze in ready-to-serve portions
– Place wax paper on top before sealing to prevent freezer burn
– For best results, form dough into balls or roll into cylinder and wrap well
– Pre-bake some cookies before freezing the rest of the dough
Muffins and Breads
– Allow baked goods to cool completely first
– Wrap individual muffins or slices of bread in plastic wrap before placing in bags
Tomato Sauce and Liquids
– Freeze in ice cube trays first before transferring to bags
– Leave head space in bags for expansion during freezing
– Rinse herbs and dry thoroughly before freezing
– Place herbs in single layer in bag with a few tablespoons of water
– Grate or slice cheese before freezing
– Pack tightly in bags and remove as much air as possible
Storing Frozen Ziploc Bags and Containers
To get the maximum frozen storage life out of foods in Ziploc containers and bags:
– Ensure your freezer is 0°F or below. Place thermometer inside to monitor.
– Avoid opening the freezer door frequently. This maintains stable, cold temperature.
– Check seals on bags and containers regularly to ensure they remain tightly closed. Reseal if needed.
– Inspect frozen Ziploc bags and containers for signs of frost, ice crystals or freezer burn. This may indicate temperature fluctuations or air leaks.
– Organize similar foods together in freezer to make locating items easier. Group proteins, fruits, baked goods, etc.
– Once defrosted, do not refreeze foods in Ziploc bags or containers for optimal safety and quality.
How Long Does Food Last Frozen in Ziploc Bags and Containers?
With proper, consistent freezing, the following approximate storage times can be expected for foods frozen in Ziploc freezer bags and containers:
– Beef: 6-12 months
– Pork: 4-6 months
– Poultry: 9-12 months
– Fish: 3-6 months
– Bacon: 1 month
Fruits and Vegetables
– Berries: 10-12 months
– Peas, corn: 8-12 months
– Greens: 6-12 months
– Carrots: 12 months
– Cheese: 6 months
– Butter: 6-9 months
– Casseroles: 2-3 months
– Soups, stews: 2-3 months
– Cookies: 10-12 months
– Unbaked dough: 3 months
– Muffins: 3-6 months
– Breads: 3 months
Always label frozen items with contents and dates and follow FIFO (first in, first out) for usage. Portioning contents into single or few servings also optimizes freezer life. With proper handling, Ziploc bags and containers are very effective for freezing.
Thawing Frozen Ziploc Bags and Containers
Frozen Ziploc bags and containers can be thawed safely using these methods:
– Refrigerator thawing: For gentle, slow thawing place bags or containers in the refrigerator. Most items thaw overnight or within 12-24 hrs.
– Cold water thawing: Submerge Ziploc bags in cold tap water, changing water every 30 mins until thawed. For containers, hold under running cold tap water.
– Microwave defrosting: Follow microwave defrost settings based on food type and amount. Use lower power levels and check periodically. Allow standing time.
– On the counter: Thaw small bags or containers on the counter for an hour or less. Do not thaw meats and dairy on counter.
– During cooking: Frozen contents in bags and containers can often go straight into simmering or boiling water or liquid when cooking.
– As part of meal prep: Allow frozen ingredients to gradually thaw when prepping casseroles, soups, etc. where cooking heat will fully cook and heat contents.
Always cook thawed frozen foods immediately and do not refreeze thawed items. Handle thawed contents safely and follow food hygiene guidelines.
Are There Any Risks of Freezing with Ziploc Bags and Containers?
Freezing in Ziploc freezer bags and containers is generally quite safe but there are some potential risks to be aware of:
– Freezer burn – Contents exposed to air can lead to quality loss. Use airtight bags and containers.
– Temperature fluctuations – Power outages or frequently opened freezer can lead to unsafe partial thawing.
– Unsafe thawing – Always thaw in refrigerator, microwave, or cold water. Not at room temperature.
– Food spoilage – Follow freezer storage times and check for signs of spoilage during defrosting. Do not refreeze thawed foods.
– Open or damaged freezer bags or containers – Double check seals are closed, look for splits or cracks before freezing.
– Contamination – Practice food safety handling guidelines when portioning and filling freezer bags and containers.
As long as you take care when filling, sealing, storing, and thawing, Ziploc provides a very convenient and safe freezing method. Always inspect for signs of food spoilage and never refreeze thawed frozen foods.
What Are Some Freezer-Safe Alternatives to Ziploc Bags and Containers?
In addition to Ziploc, here are some other freezer-safe food storage options:
Other Plastic Freezer Bags Brands
– Glad freezer bags
– Target freezer bags
– Walmart Great Value freezer bags
– FoodSaver freezer bags
Glass Storage Containers
– Anchor Hocking glass containers with glass lids
– Pyrex glass bakeware and storage dishes with plastic lids
– Ball/Kerr freezer-safe wide mouth mason jars
Other Plastic Freezer Containers
– Rubbermaid freezer containers
– OXO Good Grips Snap Seal freezer containers
– Lock n Lock freezer containers with silicone lids
Silicone Molds and Trays
– Tovolo Perfect Cube and Perfect Scoop silicone molds
– Mastrad Silicone Mini Cube molds and trays
– Reusable silicone ice cube trays
All of these options provide safe, effective alternatives for freezing foods at home in bags or airtight containers.
Most Ziploc freezer bags and designated freezer containers can safely be stored in the freezer. Key things to check are that the specific Ziploc product is marked and labeled for freezer use. Then follow proper guidelines for securely sealing, removing excess air, condensing contents, maximizing freezer space, monitoring temperature, labeling items, and safely defrosting. With the right handling, Ziploc bags and containers are very handy for freezing a wide variety of foods at home. Always inspect containers for damage prior to use and do not refreeze thawed foods. With some basic precautions, Ziploc provides an economical way to efficiently use your freezer’s storage space.