how long can you freeze beef stew meat

To freeze beef stew, cook it and then let it cool completely before packaging in airtight containers or freezer bags. The taste and texture of the frozen beef stew will be minimally impacted, and it will last for up to three months in the freezer.

Are you time-poor? Do you dream about coming home from work on a cold day to a homemade stew bubbling away on the stove? Me too! And while I have no magic formula to give you more time in your day, I can teach you how to freeze lamb and beef stew, so you’ll always have a freezer full of batch-cooked meals for those busy days, just waiting to be reheated at a moment’s notice, saving you A LOT OF TIME.

A big batch of beef stew can be worth its weight in gold in the cooler months of the year. It’s classic comfort food, plus who doesn’t love a bowl of delicious beef stew and a glass of red wine when it’s cold out? Here’s how I think about turning leftover stew into homemade freezer meals… It generally takes the same amount of time to make a stew with 2kg of meat as it does with 1kg of meat. So why not save yourself some time in the kitchen and make a big hearty meal that you can enjoy again, and again, and again?

Here are a few simple steps to freeze stew

  • The first step is to let your cooked beef stew cool completely to room temperature.
  • Divide it into practical portions in airtight containers, leaving a little room for expansion and the lid to secure.
  • Label each container with the name and date to ensure you can keep track of when a frozen stew is nearing its best-before date. Don’t have labels? A handy roll of masking tape and black markers make easy labels for the deep freeze.
  • Pop your containers into the freezer until you need them!

In freezer temperatures of 0 degrees Fahrenheit and below, fresh stew meat keeps for three to four months. After this time, the stew meat is still safe to eat, but freshness continues to diminish as long as it remains frozen. Always remove fresh stew meat from its original packaging before freezing, because the meat counters packaging is intended only for short-term use. For long-term freezer storage, wrap the stew meat in airtight wrapping such as freezer wrap, heavy-duty aluminum foil or a good-quality plastic freezer bag.

Thaw fresh and cooked stew meat in the refrigerator to guard against bacterial growth. Transfer the stew meat from the freezer to the refrigerator 24 hours before cooking to ensure ample thawing time. When in a pinch, place the frozen stew meat in a moisture-proof plastic bag and set it in a bowl of cold water. Change the water every 30 minutes until thawed. Microwaving is another safe thawing option. After thawing the stew meat in cold water or the microwave, cook immediately. If the meat shows any evidence of freezer burn, use a sharp knife to shave away the affected areas before thawing. Itll be easier to remove while the meat is still wholly or partly frozen

Flavorful meat is the basis of a hearty stew. Everything else that you add to the pot simply builds upon its taste. Stew meat should always be as fresh as possible, so if you are unable to cook it right away, freeze it. Although its quality will eventually begin to deteriorate, your stew meat will remain food safe.

Cooking does not extend the freezing time of stew meat. In 0 degrees Fahrenheit, stew meat keeps up to three months before freshness is compromised. Although the stew meat remains safe for consumption after three months, taste and texture may become unfavorable. Store cooked stew meat in plastic freezer bags or wrapped in freezer wrap or heavy-duty foil. An airtight freezer container also helps to keep cooked stew meat fresher longer during freezing.

Cooked or fresh, stew meat is only safe to eat for a limited time at room temperature. Outside of the refrigerator and freezer, bacteria that exists on the meat begins to reproduce rapidly. In temperatures above 40 F, enough bacteria is produced to render the stew meat unsafe for consumption after only two hours. Left in temperatures of 90 F and above, stew meat only lasts an hour before it needs to be discarded.

Can you freeze beef stew?

Yes! Most slow-cooked stews, soups, and casseroles freeze quite well. The beef broth or sauce seals the beef chunks to prevent freezer burn when frozen for future use.

Freezeable airtight containers are a must. I have also used reusable, freezer bags (or pouches) before. Bonus points if it’s a microwave-safe container – Easier for reheating small amounts in the microwave. You can also use lidded foil trays. All options work equally as well freezing leftover beef stew. I also make sure there is the ability to write on the container (or be able to attach labels) so I can keep track of what’s inside.

To freeze beef stew, cook it and then let it cool completely before packaging in airtight containers or freezer bags. The taste and texture of the frozen beef stew will be minimally impacted, and it will last for up to three months in the freezer.

FAQ

Is meat still good after 2 years in freezer?

Poisonous microbes like bacteria are put into sleep mode by freezing. In simpler terms, it’s almost impossible for most frozen foods to ever become spoiled in a working freezer. So, from a food safety perspective, your two-year-old meat is good to go.

How long does stew meat stay good in the freezer?

Product
Refrigerator (40 F)
Freezer (0 F)
Hamburger
1–2 days
3–4 months
Ground turkey, veal, pork, lamb, and mixtures of them
1–2 days
3–4 months
Stew meats
3-5 days
4-12 months

Can you freeze beef stew with potatoes and carrots in it?

Cooked beef stew can be safely frozen. However, if the stew contains potatoes, they can change their texture a bit from being frozen. They don’t become inedible when frozen in a mixture like stew but they are different after freezing. They tend to taste a bit “grainy” and they tend to fall apart.

How long can diced beef be frozen?

Depending on the cut, uncooked meat can be stored up to 6 months in the freezer. Larger cuts, like steaks and roasts, can be safely stored for up to 6 months. Smaller cuts, such as beef steaks, should not be frozen for more than 4 months, and minced meat should not be frozen for more than 3 months.

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