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Frozen Foods: The Best and the Worst Ones to Get

 Frozen foods often get a bad name and are mocked for being processed junk. While not all frozen foods are good, you would be surprised to know that some of the healthiest foods in the market can actually be found in the freezer section.
In these times, especially, when trips to the grocery store have become less frequent, it is prudent to stock up on frozen food items. Not only will they last in the freezer for months, but they can also be used when you are in a real rush. This makes them convenient to supplement your fresh and pantry picks at mealtime.
Food experts say that the best thing about frozen foods is they retain their nutritional value and may be higher in some vitamins than foods like vegetables that were harvested many days before. So, there is certainly a case to be made to stock your freezer with a variety of frozen foods. That being said, not all frozen foods are good and you must be aware which ones would be suitable for you.
Here, we will talk about some of the best frozen foods that you should buy along with the ones that you should certainly avoid. Take a look. 

Five Best Frozen Foods You Can Buy

1. Frozen meat

Frozen foods, Frozen meat
Health experts and many prominent chefs recommend buying and stocking up on frozen meat for your home. Chicken freezes quite well while as its usually quite small and gets cold quickly. Frozen pork and beef ribs also work well and would defrost nicely. The meats with the best longevity are steaks, roasts, whole chicken, and turkey. All of these frozen meats can all last up to one year if stored properly.
That being said, processed meats like bacon and hot dogs don’t work well as frozen food and will stay good for only up to a month in the freezer.

2. Frozen seafood

Frozen foods, Frozen seafood
Wild frozen seafood and frozen shrimp are great options to buy from the freezer aisle in the supermarket. Frozen cod, according to some chefs, is great because you can make plenty of dishes with it. For instance, fish tacos, fish sticks, and crispy topped cod can be easily made with the help of frozen seafood. Also, raw shrimp freezes and thaws well as it won’t hold a lot of water after thawing. Thus, you can cook it properly and get great color in it when it is seared or grilled. 
Frozen fish, of course, is a popular item that many people swear by. Freezing a fish also stops any microbiological activity, including pathogens which cause food poisoning.
Furthermore, frozen fish and seafood can be 25% cheaper than fresh and are hence great value for money.

3. Frozen soup

Frozen foods, Frozen soup
Image credit: YouTube
There are plenty of frozen soup options on the market today but some uncertainty still remains among a lot of people over its merit. A vast majority of people still prefer canned soup as its supposedly the safer option. However, experts suggest that buying frozen soup is good as its quality is typically maintained after it is reheated. They are equally hearty and comforting as homemade soup and also have better nutritional value and cleaner ingredient lists than canned soups.
Moreover, you can prepare it easily and it won’t take much of your space in the freezer. 
If you are craving some homemade soups, check out our list of 6 Delicious and Easy-To-Make Soup Recipes.

4. Frozen fruits and vegetables

Frozen foods, Frozen fruits
Most nutritionists say that nutrient damage from freezing fruits is very minimal. In fact, frozen fruits can be quite delicious and also work perfectly in several recipes such as healthy pancakes, smoothies, and crumbles. When you are looking to buy frozen fruits in the supermarket, make sure that you opt for pure fruit that doesn't include any additives.
Some of the healthiest frozen fruits are peaches, raspberries, blueberries, pomegranates, cherries, pineapple, and bananas. You can even add thawed bananas to your yogurt for a healthy dessert.
Frozen foods, Frozen vegetables
As for veggies, we’ve all used frozen peas at some point and they are of course of great value. However, there are plenty of other frozen veggies that you can buy and store. You can stock your freezer with various mealy and fibrous vegetables, like okra, spinach, corn, cauliflower, and beans (apart from peas, of course) which cook really well. Frozen spinach, particularly, is quite handy in making lasagna and other spinach dishes. 

5. Frozen dough

Frozen foods, Frozen dough
Many types of dough like puff pastry, phyllo, and pie crust have a high fat content as they contain butter or shortening. This makes it easier to thaw and freeze them properly. Chefs also say that frozen dough can be really versatile and convenient to work with plenty of sweet dishes and savories. 
The concept of frozen dough has caught on in recent times as this new baking technology provides ample benefits. For starters, you can make higher quality bakery products compared to scratch baking using it. They are also great for portion control and can be used to make a variety of little items like pumpkin pie tartlets, lemon blueberry tartlets, peach 'pie-lets, and many more. 


Five Frozen Foods You Should Avoid Buying 

1. Pasta dishes

Frozen foods, Pasta dishes
Frozen pasta dishes sound great as they make for a tasty and quick meal. However, the texture and flavor of frozen pasta are certainly compromised. Moreover, you will also be digesting palm oil, unhealthy fats, flour treatments, and preservatives that most manufacturers add in frozen pasta. Also, frozen pasta is generally high in sodium and fat, which can never be good for your body when taken regularly.
Thus, it would be better for you to cook the pasta yourself where you can control the ingredients you add to it. If you are looking for some pasta options to prepare at home, our 7 Easy, Low-Carb and Guilt-Free Pasta Recipes should help. 

2. Frozen smoothies

Frozen foods, smoothies
The idea of frozen smoothies has really caught on lately as many consider it a healthy choice. However, they are deceiving and are often loaded with added sugars. Just check the label behind the pack of any frozen smoothie and you will get the true facts. Remember, that it’s easier to drink calories than to eat them and by drinking frozen fruit smoothies you are more likely to overeat or consume an excess of calories.
The easier and much better option is to buy frozen fruit and veggies and creating an easy smoothie on your own.

3. Burgers

Frozen foods, Burgers
Frozen sliders and burgers with pre-attached buns have become quite popular these days and you can find a range of fresh and chilled veggie and vegan burgers on the market. A lot of parents find it easier to buy a frozen burger for their craving children than to make one at home. But these burgers are mostly filled with low-quality ingredients and aren’t exactly appetizing either. Even frozen vegetable burgers may contain additives like stabilizers, genetically modified foods (GM foods), palm oil, allergens such as barley, wheat, and yeast, and added sugar and salt.
You would certainly be much better off making burgers at home and freezing them for later use.

4. Pre-chopped frozen onions

Frozen foods,  Pre-chopped onions
Pre-chopped onions are definitely time-saving for obvious reasons. However, food critics say that the taste, texture, and pungency of an onion are all affected by freezing. They also lose their firm crunchiness on defrosting and hence their value as a sandwich or salad topper becomes pointless. Frozen onions are also going to have a bit more water in them. Thus, it would more prudent to buy a large onion, chop them yourself, and then freeze them.

5. Breaded fish

Frozen foods, Breaded fish
Frozen fish sticks can be of great value when you are in a hurry and don’t have the time to prepare a snack for your child (or yourself). But you need to be aware that mass-produced breaded fish includes heaps of palm oil, raising agents, and added salt and sugar. They can also contain raising agents and E numbers (Food Additives). What you can do instead is buy frozen protein to defrost and make breadcrumbs quickly by blending stale bread in a food processor.
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