FreezeDried Foods The Ultimate Emergency Food Type You Need to Stockpile
Freeze-dried food is the go-to for emergency storage. It's compact, has a long shelf life, and is easy to carry. Add it to your emergency plan! Here's the types you should consider:
- simple to transport
It'll last for decades in a cool, dry place.
What is freeze-dried food?
Freeze-dried foods are a great thing to keep in case of natural disasters or emergencies. Unlike other types of preserved food, they don't need to be refrigerated and can last up to 25 years.
To understand how they are made, it is important to know that a sublimation process is used. This removes moisture from the food and preserves it for long periods of time.
To make them ready to eat, just add water and wait a few minutes. You can then enjoy fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, and even meals like macaroni and cheese or chili con carne! There is something for everyone, whatever dietary restrictions they may have.
Benefits of freeze-dried food
Freeze-dried food is ideal for emergency prep. It's shelf life can last up to 25 years when stored correctly. It has more nutrients than canned goods and is preprocessed, so no chopping needed. Plus, it's light, calorie dense and offers maximum nutrition for minimum weight and space. Perfect for camping trips and bug out journeys!
Types of Freeze-Dried Foods
Freeze-dried foods are essential for emergency prepping. They are frozen and dehydrated to get rid of moisture and retain their nutritional value. Their shelf life is longer than other types of food. Plus, they are easy to store.
Let's delve into the different types of freeze-dried foods and learn about their benefits!
Fruits are a great addition to freeze-dried foods. They add flavor and nutrition that's super concentrated! Freeze-dried fruits can have 10-20x more nutrients than regular fruits. Some of the most common types are:
- Berries: Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, cranberries, blackberries
- Citrus fruits: Lemons, oranges
- Melons: Watermelons, cantaloupes
Time to reconstitute depends on the fruit. Most need 5 minutes or less. But strawberries and berries may take longer. Freeze-dried fruit tastes great as snacks, smoothies or in cereal or trail mix for extra nutrition!
Freeze-drying vegetables? No worries! Almost no nutritional value is lost. Onions, carrots, peas, potatoes, green beans, corn, mushrooms and peppers are popular freeze-dried veggies. They can be stored for up to 25 years without spoiling. Plus, their nutritional content stays the same!
Freeze-drying removes the water from food cells, so different types of foods can be frozen together. Color changes may occur, but adding water when cooking will fix that. Nutrients remain intact, meaning cooking vitamins don't go bad. Rehydrating freeze-dried veggies doesn't require oil, so you can easily find lean meals in your emergency food pantry.
Meats are an awesome option for your freeze-dried food stockpile. In emergencies, they provide essential nutrients, calories, and protein. Plus, they're versatile and give the energy you need to survive.
These meats can be freeze-dried:
- Beef: It has a great flavor and lots of proteins and vitamins like B12 and zinc.
- Chicken: It's easier to find than other poultry and still has a lot of proteins even after cooking.
- Turkey: Lots of proteins and low in calories.
- Fish: Freeze-drying keeps all its nutrients. Plus, some fish contain fatty acids which benefit your brain.
- Pork: It has the highest fat of all meats. But this fat helps protect you from disease and boosts vitamins like A & D.
Dairy is tricky to freeze-dry. High fat products, like cheese and cream, take more time. Freeze dried dairy is great for emergency food storage, since it lasts a long time. Powdered milk, lactose-free powder, creamers, and sour cream are all freeze-dried options.
Freeze-dried cheese shreds (cheddar, colby, monterey jack, etc.) are becoming popular. They can be used in casseroles, soup, pizza, and more. Just add water to rehydrate in minutes!
Butter can also be freeze-dried. Clarifying butter, butter-flavored shortening, and other forms are available. These last a long time and are edible even when stored for a while.
Grains and Legumes
Grains and legumes are a great way to diversify your emergency food supply. They are lightweight and easy to store; just add hot or cold water to rehydrate them. Plus, they're packed with essential vitamins and minerals.
Most freeze-dried grains can be used straight away, but some require cooking. Rice, polenta, and quinoa need to be soaked in cold water overnight or cooked in boiling water with a ratio of 1:4 (grain:liquid). All other grains just need hot or boiling water for a few minutes. Check the label for brand-specific instructions.
Examples of Grains:
- White Rice
- Sweet Rice
- Brown Rice
- Oat Flakes
- Barley Flakes
- Quinoa Flakes
Examples of Legumes:
- Black Beans
- Pinto Beans
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are classic, yummy freeze-dried foods. They can last for ages and still retain their nutrition. Not only are they great for emergencies, but also for quick meals.
Freeze-drying helps preserve them for up to 25 years! These snacks are full of awesome stuff like protein, magnesium, zinc and copper. Plus, healthy fats like monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. Almonds, walnuts, macadamias, pumpkin and sunflower seeds can be eaten dry or rehydrated.
No refrigeration needed when storing. Lightweight containers are perfect. Vitamin E, dietary fibre and major carbs – these freeze-dried nuts are great for snacking on the go. And they have omega-3 benefits!
How to Store Freeze-Dried Foods
Freeze-dried foods are essential for emergency stockpiles. Their nutritional value won't diminish over time and they're lightweight, making them easy to transport. You'll need to know how to store freeze-dried foods for short or long-term emergencies. Here's what you need to know!
- Store freeze-dried foods in a cool, dry place.
- Keep the containers sealed and away from direct sunlight.
- Check the expiration date on the package and discard any food that has expired.
- Label the containers with the date of purchase and expiration date.
- Rotate your freeze-dried food stockpile every 6-12 months.
Best containers for storage
It's best to store freeze-dried foods in airtight, vacuum-sealed containers. Plastic buckets and cans lined with Mylar or a food-grade coating can provide a long-term solution. Plastic bags and containers are the least desirable, as they allow moisture infiltration over time.
Nitrogen gas flushing helps slow oxidation, extending shelf life. And, in an airtight environment, oxygen absorbers (silica gel packets) absorb oxygen from the container, improving shelf life even further when combined with a nitrogen flush system.
Choose food-grade, BPA-free plastic or steel cans that keep out moisture and light. Consider the size of the container you need today and down the line. For example, buckets come in multiple sizes.
Anything that can make an airtight seal is suitable for long term freeze-dried food storage. But, investigate any container before you purchase it. Confirm it's made from food-grade materials. This is especially important for acidic foods, like tomato sauce and fruit juices, which might erode more porous surfaces over time.
Best temperature and humidity for storage
Freeze-dried foods can remain edible for up to 25 years. Store them in an area with a temperature between 40 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit and less than 30% humidity. This is the key to making sure your supply lasts!
If you find it difficult to maintain the ideal conditions, try adding silica gel packs or oxygen absorbers. Store the food in sealed Mylar bags. Furthermore, keep away from sources of heat such as grills or stoves. Minimize light exposure and use air conditioning regularly to help preserve its freshness.
Shelf life of freeze-dried foods
Freeze-dried food is great for storing survival food with a long shelf life. Up to 25 years if stored at optimal temps and humidity. Dependent on the food, it could be up to 15 years for fruits and veggies and 25 years for meats. It can be used in any emergency situation. Major military organizations rely on these meals in crisis situations.
Plus, freeze-dried foods are irradiated to stay fresh longer than canned goods. This reduces bacteria/microbes and contamination. Packaging should stay intact during storage/transport. Freeze-dried products are ideal for everyday eating plans and emergency supply kits.
Tips for Preparing Freeze-Dried Foods
Essential for emergency food stores, freeze-dried foods last years. They keep their nutrition and taste. So, they make a great base for emergency plans. But how to prepare them? Here are tips and tricks for rehydrating and preparing freeze-dried food. This ensures the best taste, nutrition, and storage.
Rehydrating freeze-dried foods is important. Use twice as much liquid as the volume of dry food. Heat the liquid until it reaches between 140-180 degrees Fahrenheit. Don't boil it, or it'll lose flavor and nutrition.
Cold water works for meats and cheese, but warm water is better. Cover the bowl with a lid or damp cloth. Let it sit for 15 minutes. Stir lightly.
The time needed for rehydration depends on several factors. The ideal outcome is reached after 2-4 hours of soaking. Create traps for escaping vapors. This will help you get the most flavorful dish found in fancy restaurants!
Cooking with freeze-dried foods is simple. Just add the right amount of water and follow the instructions. Water amounts can vary, like 2 cups to 1 cup of freeze-dried food with a 3:1 ratio.
- Boiling or warm water for soups, stews, and chili will ensure correct rehydration.
- Warm water is usually ok for casseroles, stir-frys, and one-pot meals.
Steep freeze-dried fruits in cold water for a few minutes before adding to breakfasts dishes. Berries can be simmered in honey, syrup, or juice until soft enough to mash.
- Chop onions, carrots, celery, and bell peppers at the start of cooking.
- Diced potatoes can be added at the end. Boil potatoes for 10 minutes before adding them to recipes.
These are just some freezing tips. With creativity, you can make yummy meals with all sorts of ingredients!
Serving freeze-dried foods is simple:
- Use two to four ounces per person.
- Add freeze-dried food to boiling water and cook for a few minutes.
- Allow the recipe to rehydrate fully before adding wet ingredients.
- Reduce extra liquid from canned beans or veg by half.
- Carefully time dishes and stir often.
- Serve your favorite foods hot and enjoy!
To sum up, freeze-dried foods are ideal for emergency preparation. They are nutritious and easy to store for the long-term. In a crisis, these foods will provide your body with the nutrients it needs. Plus, there is an array of flavors and types to choose from.
With their extended shelf life, freeze-dried foods are a must-have for anyone looking to create a long-term emergency food supply.
Advantages of freeze-dried food
Freeze-dried foods are ideal for emergencies. They last up to 25 years and don't need refrigeration or a freezer. Plus, they are light and take up less space than canned or fresh items. Furthermore, they have a longer shelf life than emergency foods. Plus, there is an amazing variety of freeze-dried foods available.
- Fruits, veggies, and meats
- Ready-to-eat meals and desserts
All packed with flavor and still with their original nutritional value intact.
Disadvantages of freeze-dried food
Freeze-dried food has perks, yet there are drawbacks to consider. Cost is a factor; it's usually pricier than other emergency rations. Plus, you must add water which adds to the cost. High sodium levels can cause issues for those with dietary limits or blood pressure concerns. The shelf life is limited; these items must be eaten or rotated within a few years. Lastly, they may require a while to rehydrate – this could be a nuisance in an emergency when time is of the essence.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are freeze-dried foods?
A: Freeze-dried foods are foods that have been through a process of dehydration, where water is removed from the food to reduce its weight and volume, while still retaining its nutritional value. Freeze-dried foods are lightweight, shelf-stable, and often have a longer shelf life than other types of emergency food.
Q: What are the advantages of freeze-drying food?
A: Freeze-dried foods are lightweight and have a very long shelf life, which makes them the ideal emergency food for long-term storage. They also retain their nutritional value, taste, and texture, making them a great option for emergency situations.
Q: What kinds of food can be freeze-dried?
A: Almost any type of food can be freeze-dried, including fruits, vegetables, meats, dairy products, and grains. Freeze-dried food is also available in ready-to-eat meals, such as stews, soups, curries, and omelets.