Storing food is something that everyone should know how to do. Even though it can seem like a huge hassle, it is actually very easy to do and can save you plenty of time and money in the future. Even people of college age can take advantage of food storage, without spending too much money up-front or taking up too much of their free time. Read on for a few pointers on the fundamentals for food storage as a college student:
1. Make extras of your favorite meals.
Instead of trying to figure out what type of food is best to store or which recipes you may want to try six months down the line and storing accordingly, try to just focus on storing the food that you love and that you eat most often. The next time you make a batch of your famous spaghetti sauce, make it a double and save half in the freezer. Or stock up on particular items that you like to use all the time. Fruits and vegetables can store in the freezer, as long as they are air-sealed, without out losing too many of their nutrients. If you keep a small stock of necessities on hand, you can cook more easily, without having to go shopping (and spend more money) every time.
2. Store to save prep time.
One of the best ways to use food storage is to take a bit of time to prepare small, inexpensive things ahead of time, to save you tons of time and energy in the future. If you want to save time cooking the things that you cook most, simply make some extras or do a step or two of the early preparations and freeze the rest. Try doing simple things, like chopping up a bag of potatoes and freezing them to fry quickly in the mornings or with fast dinners. Or make a batch of grilled or sautéed chicken, cut it up, and divide it into serving-sized plastic bags. It’s the perfect thing to heat up and eat over a salad or inside a sandwich for some quick, healthy protein.
3. Don’t splurge on fancy storage containers.
There is no need to buy expensive containers just for storage. In my mind, nothing compares to a good, old glass jar for storing purposes. Also, air-sealed plastic bags can hold anything from soup to steak and are cheap and easy to use.
4. Don’t store more than you need.
Even though it’s important to store as much as possible to make your life easier, save money, and prepare for the future, you will only hurt efforts in the long run if you end up storing way more food than you need. A college lifestyle doesn’t necessarily require stocking up for years to come. In fact, some food left frozen for too long can go bad. Just try to focus on storing no more than a year ahead.
Melissa Miller has sworn her life to helping others do the same by explaining the often tricky world of online education. Direct any questions or comments to melissamiller831 (at) gmail.com.