Imagine this: errands took you way longer than you thought they would and those popsicles that you bought the kids are melting more by the second. So you do what you need to do and just shove everything in the freezer to keep it from thawing.
Sound familiar? I’ve done it myself a million times.
And then I regret it later when I can’t find what I need or those popsicles are in the way of the frozen meat I needed.
Freezer organization doesn’t have to be as hard as we think. But it is important. When your freezer is organized, it makes meal prep so much easier. Your freezer is just as important as your fridge!
Here are my best freezer organization hacks that will make the best use of your freezer space. This way, you can know what you actually have and where it is! No more food will be lost to the depths of the deep freezer.
List of Freezer Organization Supplies
Here is a list of my favorite supplies and essentials for keeping your freezer organized. These tools will really help you in your journey to a non-avalanched freezer. 😉
- Multi-Purpose Bins
- Gallon Ziploc Bags
- Bag Stand
- Souper Cubes
- Small Plastic Containers
- Medium Plastic Containers
- Large Plastic Containers
- Large Aluminum Pans
- Small Aluminum Pans
- Freezer Labels
- Freezer Meal Plan (her recipes are my fave!)
Tips to Help You Organize Your Freezer
Create a Filing System
My very favorite tool for freezer organization is to buy plastic file folder bins.
These work really nicely because they usually fit really well and really help to keep your freezer organized. That way there isn’t an avalanche of frozen peas every time you open your freezer door!
If you know you need to get out the frozen vegetables, all you have to do is get out the freezer bin that you need.
Group Foods By Type
When setting a plan to organize your freezer, think long and hard about the types of food that you typically have on hand.
Do you buy tons of popsicles? Do you have a lot of meat on hand? Do you need bags of frozen fruits for smoothies? Or frozen veggies for quick dinners? Are you a freezer meal fanatic?
It might be helpful to even write these items down.
The next step is to put food items into categories to help you determine how much space you’ll need for each food type.
I know that I always buy big bags of frozen fruit from Costco, so I allocated my largest bin at the bottom of my freezer for that. If you have a freezer drawer, you could use that instead of a big bin.
Now take that concept and apply it to each food group.
If you are like me, the types of food that you buy in each category can wax and wane slightly but stay relatively consistent. But if your purchases are all over the place maybe try keeping your categories more general.
Freeze Food Flat
My next tip is to freeze things flat. I freeze all of my soups this way and it helps save so much space in my freezer.
By the way, if you’re not freezing soup, I highly recommend it. I usually double every recipe of soup. Then I always have an ample supply of extras on hand for busy weeknights when I don’t have time, or the desire, to cook.
Freezing things flat also makes really great use of your vertical storage space which otherwise ends up going to waste.
This ground beef tip is something that I learned from my sister-in-law: every time I get ground beef, I put 1 lb of ground beef in a gallon Ziploc bag and roll it out really flat and close the Ziploc bag and freeze it so it’s lying down flat. After it’s frozen, I can store it upright in my file folder bins.
That way, every time you go to get out the ground beef, it only takes a couple of minutes for the frozen ground beef to thaw in a sink of hot water instead of trying to thaw a giant block of ground beef.
Plus, because you froze it flat, it is really easy to organize in the file folder bins.
This tip also works well for chest freezers. You can basically file your flat Ziploc bags or stack them if that’s easier. Just make sure to organize it according to what you’ll use next so the top layer has what you need and you don’t have to go digging through your deep freezer.
Freeze Food In Smaller Portions
Freezing your food in huge portions can be a big time-waster. Unless you have a super-human brain (unlike mine) and never forget to pull frozen food out of the freezer.
Too often I find myself realizing the food I need is still in the freezer at about 4:30 PM. If that ever happens to you, here’s what you want to do.
Freeze food in smaller portions, or freeze things flat as mentioned above, so things will thaw out significantly faster.
If you like to freeze fresh produce or veggies so they don’t go bad, freeze them in the portion size that you’ll need. That way, you won’t have to defrost the entire bag or try to chip away at the amount you need.
Use Freezer-Specific Containers
Freezer burn can be a real problem and a real money waster if you let it!
Nobody likes to pull chicken breasts out of the freezer with freezer burn all over them. So that’s why it’s important to choose your containers carefully.
When you freeze food in Ziploc bags, make sure that you are using the freezer-specific Ziploc bags. That extra thickness that the freezer bag provides will act as a buffer in preventing freezer burn on your food. Nobody likes wasted food!
Another way to prevent freezer burn is to get as much air out of the package as possible before freezing.
Look for freezer bags and freezer-friendly glass or plastic containers. Not all food storage containers are created equally (no matter the material they are made from) so make sure you check that they’re meant for freezer storage before you buy!
One product that I discovered that I am really in love with is called Souper Cubes.
These silicone containers are excellent for freezing things in smaller portion sizes and it’s great for helping you organize your freezer. I definitely consider this a freezer organization hack!
I love it because I am able to freeze leftovers of heavy whipping cream, pesto, or even leftover soup for my husband’s lunches that he takes to work. The possibilities are endless with these!
Reusable Plastic Containers
My next tip is to buy small plastic containers to store leftover veggies. I absolutely hate cutting up and dicing onions for meals. Oftentimes, I buy a few onions at a time, cut them all up at once, and then put the diced onions and frozen plastic containers.
Then they are ready to go for soups or most other dinner entrees! all I have to do is dump them in and it saves me so much time.
I do this for all sorts of things like green peppers, celery for soups, craisins, and it’s great for even storing leftover nuts! The possibilities are limitless with what you can store in these containers.
They would even be great for storing kids’ snacks or for road trips. Use the code HANSEN for 15% off your order if you order through their website! They have several different sizes as well so you can customize them to your needs.
Label Your Freezer
Labeling your actual freezer is really important if you want it to stay organized. It not only helps you find what you need
Labeling your actual freezer is really important if you want it to stay organized.
It not only helps you find what you need on your freezer shelves but it also helps your family keep things organized. That way they don’t go rifling through the entire freezer in search of something that isn’t there.
If they know where to look for something, they leave the rest of the freezer alone.
Also, if they ever help you unload your groceries, they’ll know the freezer storage system and know right where to put things.
There are several different ways that you can label things in your freezer.
I chose to label my bins and freezer shelves with vinyl using my Silhouette machine. But you can also buy these freezer labels on Amazon.
They work great for labeling things such as freezer meals, chopped vegetables, or anything else!
Label and Date Your Food
Have you ever frozen some food and put it in the freezer without a label thinking, “I’ll for sure remember what that is”? And then you find it at the back of the freezer months later and throw it away because you can’t for the life of you remember how long it’s been there or what it even is?
I certainly have.
This is why putting a date and a label on all of your food items is so important.
Write down what is in each container in your deep freezer and when you got it. This will help you keep track of when to use your groceries so they don’t expire before you get to use them.
Freezer Meal Tips
If you are big into freezer meals then I really recommend buying sturdy aluminum containers. I love these because they stack nicely in the fridge or freezer and it’s easy to write out the instructions of how to cook the meal the rest of the way on the lid of the aluminum pan.
If you have followed me for any length of time, you know that I am really passionate about the meal plans from Passionate Penny Pincher. My family LOVES almost every single meal we’ve tried from her! She also has a freezer meal plan that we started a few weeks ago that we are loving as well!
When I am trying to stock up on my freezer meals, I try to double every dinner recipe that I make.
Some people prefer to do a big giant freezer meal session. Once in a while, I do that, but it seems easier to just build it a little bit at a time by doubling your normal recipes.
I also really recommend using upright bag holders if you make freezer meals a lot. Trying to dump a bunch of ingredients into a flimsy ziplock bag is near impossible to do without making a huge mess. Then I discovered these upright bag holders and my freezer meal prep has changed forever!
Making freezer meals can really help with meal planning because you know you have some food as a backup in case plans change or you’re just not in the mood to cook that day.
Now you can easily organize your freezer!
Organizing your freezer doesn’t have to be some awful, dreaded task, and hopefully these freezer organization ideas helped you see that!
With great tips like freezer your food flat to save more space, using plastic bags that are freezer-friendly, or labeling each container and shelf, you can turn your freezer into an organized oasis.
Okay, maybe oasis is a strong word to use when talking about freezers, but you know what I mean.
Freezer storage doesn’t have to be scary, messy, chaotic, or confusing. You deserve to know what foods are in your freezer and where they are all stored.
So once you get your freezer organized, keep up to date on it when you go grocery shopping. You won’t have to worry about frantically digging through a freezer ever again!