Last week’s post “How to save money packing a school lunch” brought in some great Reader’s Questions!
Dear Frugal Upstate,
Love the brownies in the freezer idea you mentioned in your recent post on school lunches. I was wondering though, how do you package them? Do you just cut them up, put each in a freezer storage bag and pop in freezer? How long do those last in the freezer? What about freezer burn? That is my biggest thing–I just hate freezer burn and there always seems to be some. Any suggestions?
Thanks, love these posts!
Good question! A pan of brownies doesn’t last very long in the Frugal Upstate Household, but what we don’t eat fresh I normally just cut up and stick in snack sized zippered baggies. Those get tossed into a gallon sized one-more to keep them all contained in the freezer than anything else. I’ll wind up using them over the next week or two-so there really isn’t much time for freezer burn.
If I was going to have brownies in there for longer (or was baking an entire pan just to have for snacks) then I’d wrap them tightly individually in plastic wrap instead. Freezer burn is caused by air coming into contact with the food-so when you wrap items tightly in plastic wrap not much is exposed to the air.
As for the storage life, according to the Ohio State Cooperative Extension for optimal flavor you can store cookies for 8-12 mo and unfrosted cakes for 2-3 mo. . . so I imagine brownies would fall somewhere in the middle of that.
Hope that helps. Happy baking!
Enjoyed your recent post about school lunches. I like the idea of making my own fruit, jello or pudding cups with the 4oz containers. Do you have any problems with them leaking? I always feel I have to put anything like that within a plastic bag, so I seldom use them for anything like pudding or jello.
I have some rubbermaid and tupperware that I feel confident about, but making use of the disposables would allow me to use them for more things. I just find that the seal on them isn’t as good.
I have gotten lazy about school lunches, but this year one daughter doesn’t have a school lunch option available and the other wants to take her lunch each day, so I need to get it together.
You know, I’ve never had the kids mention anything leaking, and the only time I’ve seen a mess inside their lunchboxes is when they have obviously left the lid off after eating. However as I’m not the one cracking the lunchbox open at noon I figured I better go straight to the source and ask the kids.
You’ll be relieved to know that Buddy and Princess both said that they have never had things leak.
Now if you are still leery you have a couple of options.
1. Buy more of the containers that you feel confident in. You are going to use these things over and over again-so if you feel that despite my reassurances the Rubbermaid & Tupperware are safer than buy a few more.
2. Send the gladware in packaged in a zippered baggie for safety–but teach your kids to bring back the empty clean baggie every day. That way you have the safety just in case it leaks, but can reuse the baggies instead of spending money buying new ones every day. Heck, even if they leak a bit you can always wash & reuse the baggies.
3. Buy some Press & Seal wrap, cut little squares out and seal a section of plastic over the 4 oz container before you add the lid. Yes, it’s more expensive, but if you can’t get the kids to bring the baggies home this is a disposable option. Just keep the expensive stuff just for this purpose and use the cheapo plastic wrap for your normal wrapping needs!
I’d love to hear which techniques you try and how they work for you! Keep on packing!
As for the rest of you-do you have any lunch related question? I’d love to hear those as well. Just head on over to my contact form and send them in.