All About Jars

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The Best Jars for Freezing Convenience Ingredients

date 2018-09-07T20:13:00.000Z

The Best Jars for Freezing Convenience Ingredients

Although I have an interest in canning, I'm not very knowledgeable about food preservation in jars. That being said, I freeze many things in glass to reduce exposure to plastic and aluminum.

Even with meal planning, I inevitably forget to thaw frozen foods in the refrigerator before it’s time to cook. Suddenly, I’m not prepared for this meal! Perhaps you have felt the same way!

Fret not – if you store frozen ingredients in the jars best suited for quick-thawing, you won’t have to adjust your meals. Below are my favorite jars for common convenience foods that I make and freeze, based on ease of storage and forgot-to-thaw emergencies!

Bone Broth or Stock

Freeze 1 quart (32 ounces) in 1 L Weck Cylindrical jar. This tall slender shape allows for quicker thawing at room temperature, and because it is mostly straight, you can shake out the frozen cylinder much sooner than if you use the 1 L Weck Tulip jar, for example. Thaw in refrigerator at least 24 hours prior to use for best results.

Marinara / Spaghetti Sauce

If you’ve made the leap to making homemade marinara or spaghetti sauce, try storing 32 ounces in a 1L Weck Cylindrical jar. For a larger family size meal (aka Costco size), try storing 40+ ounces in a 1 ½ L Weck Cylindrical jar.

Much like the bone broth, you can quickly and easily thaw the contents enough to shake the frozen cylinder out of the jar and into your pot for heating!

Pizza Sauce

If only I had a penny for the number of times I’ve forgotten to thaw the pizza sauce…! You can easily set out your homemade pizza sauce if frozen in a ½ Pint Regular Mouth Ball jar in the morning and be ready to bake by noon or evening. The relatively small amount thaws quickly, and the vertical shape is easy to store in the door of a refrigerator.

Beans

I’ve started to move away from purchasing beans in aluminum cans; instead, I buy dried beans and cook them in the Instant Pot. But it can be hard to beat the convenience of canned beans! Here’s how to make cooking your own beans almost as easy as grabbing a can opener:

  • After cooking your beans, strain and measure out 1 ½ cups of cooked beans; this is the approximate amount you get in a can for most bean varieties. As such, whenever a recipe calls for a 15-ounce can of beans, you know you’ve got the same amount in a jar ready to go!
  • Store your beans with fresh water so you don’t have to rinse them; only drain them before use.
  • Freeze beans in a 1/2 L Weck jar. The tapered design allows you to run warm water over the outside to quickly thaw the contents enough to remove from the jar. Then, you can place the frozen bean mass in a colander and run warm water over it until thawed.
  • Alternatively, you can fill the jar with hot water and allow it to slowly thaw over time, pouring out and adding more hot water frequently.

Read my detailed instructions on How to Freeze Beans in Jars.

Soup

Freeze leftover soup in individual servings in 1/2 L Weck Mold jars, leaving at least 1” of space at the top of the jar. When you’re ready to eat, simply run warm water over the outside of the jar for a few minutes, then place in a small sauce pan with a lid, and heat on the stove. Homemade soup whenever you please – yes, dear!

For smaller portions, try freezing in a 1/4 L Weck Mold jar. Once again, the tapered shape is perfect for releasing the contents even when mostly frozen.

In Conclusion

Ideally, we allow frozen ingredients to thaw in the refrigerator at least 24 hours before use, but life doesn’t always work that way. Prepare these foods in the properly shaped jars, and when you’re in a bind, rest assured it won’t take two days to get the contents out of a jar! Now that’s working smarter, not harder!

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