Frozen Food Storage: Keeping It Safe and Tasty (cont.)

More Freezer Facts

Here are some other facts you may not know about freezing foods:

  • Freezing to 0 degrees Fahrenheit inactivates microbes (like bacteria and molds) but it doesn't destroy them. When a food is thawed, the microbes may become active again and multiply, in certain conditions.
  • You've noticed that water expands when frozen, right? Well, the high water content in fruits and vegetables causes their cell walls to break, due to the expanding frozen water within. This is why thawed foods sometimes have a mushy texture.
  • When your electricity goes off, you should keep your freezer door closed. A fully loaded freezer should keep food frozen for one to two days if the door isn't opened.
  • Most frozen vegetables can be cooked straight from the freezer, with the exception of corn on the cob, which should be partially defrosted first.

Published October 5, 2007.

Elaine Magee, MPH, RD, is the "Recipe Doctor" for the WebMD Weight Loss Clinic and the author of numerous books on nutrition and health. Her opinions and conclusions are her own.

SOURCES: Food Marketing Institute's Food Storage Information, 2001. Iowa State University, University Extension web site: "Freezing Fruits and Vegetables." FDA: "Freezing and Food Safety."

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