Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Freezing Cooked Ground Beef

For the past year or so I have been cooking large batches of ground beef and freezing them in individual meal-sized bags.  Buying in bulk saves money and since I have recently discovered that rinsing your ground beef can remove the fat content by up to 50%, so I no longer need to spend the extra money to buy the super lean beef.

Cooking, rinsing & draining, and sorting the meat takes about an hour, depending on the amount that I'm cooking.   What I like most about this is I don't need to constantly thaw, cook, rinse, and drain little 1-2 lb batches of meat whenever we need ground beef for a meal.  All I do now is take one of the bags out of the freezer, thaw it in the fridge for about 5 hrs (or in a bowl of cold water for 45 minutes) and it's ready to be added to whatever recipe I'm making that evening.

All you need:

6 lbs or more of regular ground beef

A strainer

Ziploc Freezer Bags - I'm hoping to find a cheaper and "greener" way to save our meat.  We simply don't have enough room in our little freezer to use freezer safe containers for all of that ground meat.  If you have any suggestions please let me know!  If you have room in your freezer I suggest Ball's Freezer Jars or any freezer safe glass containers. Just make sure you fill them up as much as possible to avoid any freezer burn.

I usually write on the bag what the meat can be used for.  I portion bags based on what recipe I'll use them in - more meat for tacos or less meat for chili.

More on rinsing ground beef:

Reducing the Fat Content of Regular Ground Beef by Rinsing and Draining

Taste of Home's Dietitian

It works for me!

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