It is nearly dinner time. Do you know what you are serving tonight? If you have prepared by stocking your freezer full of disposable aluminum pans full of lasagna, pot pies, and other casseroles and one-dish meals, you can have dinner on the table in no time.
Things You'll Need
How to Freeze in Disposable Aluminum pans
Prepare the dish that you want to freeze. This might be a recipe that you are making specifically for the freezer, or it might be extras of a meal you are preparing for dinner. Many of your favorite recipes will freeze well, although you may want to season your food more lightly than usual because freezing intensifies seasonings, such as pepper and garlic.
Spray your disposable aluminum pan with cooking spray so your food will not stick.
Place your prepared food into the disposable aluminum pan. Pack the container almost to the top, leaving enough room for expansion but not so much that ice crystals will have room to form. About 1/2 inch of space at the top of your pan is ideal.
Cover the pan with the matching lid or with a layer of aluminum foil. Ensure the pan is covered tightly and securely to prevent freezer burn.
Use the permanent marker and the stick-on label to prepare a label for your dish. List the name of the dish and the date you prepared it. Also note cooking instructions for the dish, including any extra ingredients you will need to add later (such as grated cheese or a crumb topping).
Place the disposable aluminum pan in the freezer for up to three months.
An 8-inch by 8-inch pan typically holds three to four servings, while a 13-inch by 9-inch pan typically holds six to eight servings.
You usually freeze casseroles before cooking them. If you choose to cook your dish and then freeze it, undercook any pasta and rice so they will not become mushy upon thawing.
Dishes with uncooked rice, cooked potatoes, hard-boiled eggs, mayonnaise, yogurt, sour cream, and raw vegetables do not freeze well. You can often make your meal without these ingredients and add them later when you cook your dish.
If you are freezing several disposable aluminum pans at the same time, leave space for air circulation between the pans so the food will freeze more quickly. Once the pans of food are frozen, you can move them more closely together to save space in your freezer.
References and ResourcesUniversity of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service
Kansas State University Dining on a Dime
Cooking on the Run