Oh how I love my Foodsaver…let me count the ways! In the series “Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is!” I talked about investing in quality over quantity, and this, my friend, is one item that will do both – preserve the quality of your foods for when you buy in quantity! Out of all of my kitchen appliances, this has to be the most utilized and wisely invested item.
If you are going to invest in good food, invest in a good Foodsaver. Groceries are one of the highest expenses in any household budget, so making sure that you preserve it to prevent waste helps you save in the future. There are a lot of knock off brands of foodsaver that claim to preserve your foods, and I have tried them, but “Foodsaver” brand is the BEST brand in quality – period! You can find them from any price range from $80 on up, and I usually buy mine from Sam’s or Costco (namely Costco because they have an outstanding return policy). They also keep in stock the Foodsaver bags for around $39 dollars which will last you a very long time. Now to how I use my Foodsaver…
1. Freezer. Anything that goes in my deep freezer is FIRST sealed in my Foodsaver. It prevents freezer burn, keeps it as fresh as when you packed it, prolongs the shelf life, and maintains the quality of your foods. Forget aluminum foil and ziploc freezer bags – they simply do not work as well. If I buy meats in bulk, I divide them in portions for meals and seal up and freeze. I label and date it with a black sharpie as there is a space for that on each bag or roll. Neat, huh!
2. Leftovers. We grill alot in my house, so I always grill extra and freeze it. Making lasagna? Make two, and freeze the extra one. Then when you want to consume, just thaw in fridge and reheat. Big batches of sauces and soups work beautiful here. I LOVE making big batches of marinara sauce and homemade stock to store up for later use in the freezer – there is no comparison in the quality in taste you will get. It pays in spades 🙂
3. Vegetables. I LOVE freezing corn on the cob in peak season in my foodsaver bags. You can find corn cheap during the summer, and there is nothing like that first of the season taste. And don’t forget fried corn that has been scraped off the cobb – YUM! Turnip greens and collards are STELLAR frozen this way. Just season and cook them partially and store in their reserved liquid – then thaw and finish cooking when ready for them. Fresh berries, bananas, peaches, tomatoes – all can be stored safely in a foodsaver. Freeze your own fruit to use in smoothies! Look at all the money you will save by buying your summer produce in season and enjoying it well into the winter months.
4. Refrigerator. Cheese is a must to store in a Foodsaver. I usually buy a nice cheese in bulk at Costco or Sam’s and slice off what I want and seal the rest up in a Foodsaver. Who wants to waste a good block of parmesan regianno cheese? Even butter that you buy in bulk can be stored in a Foodsaver as it will help protect the flavor from whatever else is in your fridge. If I am prepping meals for the next day, I like to chop it all up and store in my Foodsaver bags. This keeps it fresh from air, and stores nice and flat as the Foodsaver helps to suck out all the air – which is what spoils food.
5. Pantry. Got rice, pasta, flour, cornmeal, nuts, cereal, chips, bagels, or crackers that you want to maintain the freshness to? Store in your Foodsaver. You can control the amount of air taken out so as not to squish things. I like being able to save that last bit of coconut flakes or chocolate chips that could be put to good use.
So there you have it! These are a FEW of the ways a Foodsaver can come in handy. Trust me, this will be the best $130 you will spend as the savings you gain from not throwing food away will pay for itself. I will show pics in the future of ways I use mine. She has become my best friend in the kitchen and has never let me down. 🙂