How To Freeze Dry Cheese
Everything tastes better with cheese, so thats why I dont want to be without it. The price of cheese her stays fairly consistent, but I like to save when I can and buy in bulk.
Cheese is difficult to preserve since you cant can it. Youre limited to freezing it or placing it in the fridge.
Even then, it only lasts for a few weeks in the fridge. It lasts longer in the freezer, but I find that the texture is off.
Sure, Ill use frozen cheese for recipes, but its just not the same as fresh cheese.
Besides, were trying to limit whats in the freezer by using our freeze dryer for shelf stable foods.
When I got the Harvest Right freeze dryer, I wondered, can you freeze dry cheese?
Thankfully, freeze dried shredded cheese and freeze dried cheese slices freeze dry and reconstitute really well.
For more foods that freeze dry well, check out these posts:
Keep track of your batches and inventory with this .
You Can Control What Goes In Them
- I love using real food ingredients, that I know my body performs well on. You can also make them suit your personal tastes. Say you dont like carrots, just swap them out with another veggie you do like.
- Want to stay in ketosis the whole time or ear strict paleo? Leave out the beans and peas and just add more fat. Personal I wasnt too worried about my Marcos. My goal was to perform better not be in ketosis 100% of the time. Sheep hunting is so strenuous, I knew my body would appreciate the extra carbs and go back into ketosis quickly. But you are in control!
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Foods That Dont Freeze Dry Well
There are a few foods that dont do well in a freeze dryer. Freeze dryers pull WATER from the food, not oil/fat. So, the more fat that is in an item, the less likely that freeze drying will work. The food item may appear to be done, but if the outside has a coat of fat on it , it can quickly go rancid in storage bags. Also, an ultra-high sugar content will often cause difficulty too.
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The #1 Trick To Freeze
Whether youre trying to freeze-dry a liquid-based food or solid food, this hack will save you a ton of time and heartache.
Heres the tip: freeze it first.
For liquids, make use of an ice cube tray and pour your liquid into that. Then, stick it in the freezer and wait. Either a plastic ice cube tray or a silicone mold are fantastic options, though the silicone mold is usually easier for removing your little iced cubes of whatever.
Youll freeze the liquid into small portions, which will freeze-dry better, faster, and easier and you wont be putting a tray full of liquid into your freeze dryer. I mean, you can do that but it takes amazing skill to avoid spilling that all over the inside of your freeze dryer .
For solids, cut your foods into small bits, line a tray, and spread the food out. Then, stick it in the freezer. This tip works great for solid foods, too, for a couple of reasons.
- First, it lets you shave some time off of your freeze drying process.
- Second, it lets you process food for second, third, and umpteenth batches of freeze-drying in the future.
- Third, freezing fresh foods is a good way to keep them safe and fresh for freeze-drying if they cant wait and you cant freeze dry them right now.
So go ahead and get all that food cut up, frozen, and store it in a freezer-safe plastic bag until you can put it in the freeze dryer.
Mountain House Chili Mac
If youve ever seen freeze-dried meals at your local Walmart, youre probably familiar with the Mountain House brand.
Add some boiling water, and youll have a super-tasty pouch of chili mac in no time. It might not be the fanciest brand, but if you want some affordable freeze-dried food that will keep you going no matter where you are, Mountain House Chili Mac should be on your shopping list. Plus, its a bit more substantial than plain old mac and cheese, so you dont have to add extra components to your meal.
A warm flatbread is a perfect accompaniment to a bowl of chili mac. Stash some in your pack and warm them up on a stone next to the fire.
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How To Make Freeze
If youre familiar with creating shelf-stable foods, youre probably already used to the idea of drying. Freezing is also a valuable tool for making perishable foods last longer, though its only useful if you have a way to keep things cold, so its less viable for backpacking or survival scenarios. If you combine the two and add a vacuum, you get freeze-dried food.
Start by placing the food in a freeze dryer. This device carries out all the steps necessary to create your freeze-dried food.
First, it freezes everything at temperatures low enough to ensure that all the water in the food freezes solid.
Then, the dryer will slowly raise the temperature while putting your food under a vacuum. This low-pressure environment causes the water in the material to sublimate skip the liquid stage and evaporate. It takes a while but can remove upwards of 95% of the water from anything youre trying to freeze dry.
Finally, the food gets treated to a final desorption stage, which removes any leftover water by raising the temperature, while keeping pressures low. The result is a product that only has 1 to 4% of its original water content.
The lack of water makes freeze-dried foods incredibly self-stable. During the Apollo space missions, most of the food the astronauts enjoyed was freeze-dried, then packaged while still in the vacuum chamber. You can still find some freeze-dried astronaut ice cream in museum gift shops.
How Long Do Freeze Dried Strawberries Last
Freeze dried strawberries can last several decades when stored properly. This is why so many people are learning how to freeze dry strawberries. Learning how to make freeze dried strawberries, or any fruit is a great skill to have.
To store freeze dried food, place the food in a sealed container up off of the ground in a cool and dry place. I like to use mylar bags to store my freeze dried food. Ideally, the temperature it is stored in should be in between thirty and sixty degrees Fahrenheit.
However, depending on your climate and home this may not be an option. The colder the environment you store your freeze dried food in the longer it will last. As such, try to keep it as cool as possible.
At the same time, make sure your food remains dry as too much moisture could reconstitute it, causing it to spoil in storage. This is why it is very important to store your freeze dried fruits in a sealed container.
It might also be worth it to invest in a dehumidifier to run in your food storage area. This will help prevent moisture from getting near your freeze dried foods should something go wrong during the storage process.
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Home & Trail: An Introduction To Drying Food
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The longer the trip, the better it is to keep backpacking food well-organized and air and water-tight, so that it keeps well.
I pack my food into daily rations, which I vacuum seal. Breakfast, lunch, supper, dessert and snacks all go into one vacuum sealed bag.
Best Variety: Wise Company Emergency Food Supply Gluten
This large stash of survival food is perfect to have on hand for any gluten-free households emergency supply. Wise Companys product is made in the USA and contains a hefty 84 servings . Packed into a secure, sturdy bucket, this emergency food supply has an extensive 25-year shelf life, so no need to replenish annually. Each meal is individually wrapped and ready-to-eat, so its easy to grab single-serve items to take on camping or hiking trips. Best of all: No cooking is necessaryyou just add water, wait up to 15 minutes, and its ready.
This convenient bucket of survival food includes 22 total servings of breakfasts, lunches, and dinners. These gluten-free meals include beef stew, breakfast skillet, scrambled eggs with bacon, and rice and chicken. Its super easy to prepareall you need to do is add hot water and its ready in under 10 minutes. The meal pouches are conveniently designed to act as bowls, tooso no cleanup is necessary. Even better? The pouches are recyclable.
The bucket itself can be easily stored or carried so that you can bring it on trips, and it wont take up too much space or be too heavy to transport. And no need to worry about replenishing your emergency supply every few yearsthis Mountain House bucket has an impressive 30-year guarantee.
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Best Powdered Milk: Carnation Nonfat Dry Milk
After subjecting five people, including myself, to a blind taste test of eight popular powdered milk brands, our results were clear Carnation NonFat Dry Milk is the best tasting powdered milk out there.
Carnation was the clear winner in terms of taste and aftertaste, receiving more 5-star ratings than any other brand. If youre looking for the best powdered milk brand, this is it.
What Foods Cant Be Freeze Dried
Ready to see which foods cant be freeze-dried? Here they are along with some notes Ive learned by experience and research.
Oily and fatty foods Due to the nature of fat, it doesnt freeze-dry well. It just goes rancid over time. Foods with fats in them can still be freeze-dried, but its smart to expect those foods to have a shorter shelf-life. You can read more about storing oils and fats in this article I wrote.
Sugary foods Due to the structure and nature of sugar, its harder for them to freeze-dry. Always test super sugary foods for moisture before storing them in mylar bags.
Alcohol Alcohol doesnt freeze-dry at all. Attempts end in huge messes. However, if a dish has a small amount of cooking alcohol in it, it should be okay.
Bones Bones dont freeze-dry. I havent tried them in our freeze dryer apparently, Im not as adventurous as other homesteaders because this idea/info came from someone else.
Butter Butter wont freeze dry on its own. If its an ingredient in something, it can work for short-term storage via freeze-drying.
Chocolate Pure chocolate wont freeze-dry. If its smaller pieces that arent 100% cacao, then it may freeze-dry as an ingredient in something else.
Chai tea I havent tried this, but others assure me it doesnt work all it does is create a huge mess.
Water Really. People have tried this. During the freeze-drying process, all the water gets removed, so really why bother?
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Seven Meals Not To Bother With
On our quest to eat through more than 20 backpacking meals, we were bound to find some duds in the bunch. From questionable meat to a very disappointing dessert, wed chuck these to the bears.
1. Backpackers Pantry Blueberry Walnut OatsSome tasters found the hemp hearts overpowering and the blueberries elusive.Emoji Rating:
2. Heathers Choice Grass-Fed Bison Chili Bland, chewy, and with cocoa powder overpowering everything else, this wasnt at the top of our list.Emoji Rating:
3. Backpackers Pantry Mango Sticky RiceInstead of sweet, sticky rice, this was more like watery, turmeric-stained rice with no sweetness whatsoever and a few crunchy freeze-dried mango bits.Emoji Rating:
4. Backpackers Pantry Hatch Green Chile Mac & CheeseThis dish didnt have much in the way of cheesy flavor we recommend packing a box of your favorite mac and cheese instead.Emoji Rating:
5. Good To-Go Classic Marinara with PastaThe pasta in this meal was cut up into small pieces and tossed in a not-so-flavorful sauce.Emoji Rating:
Breakfast Meals In A Jar
- Quick and Easy Dehydrated Meals in a Bag by Tammy Gangloff
- Ultimate Dehydrator Cookbook by Tammy Gangloff Not only is this a great technique book on how to dehdyrate those products that can build your meals in a jar, she includes a lot of “just add water” meals, too!
- Do It Yourself Prep N Store by Janice Paveglio Gunther
Look to Backpacking Recipe books for other meals that you can also put into your storage. They may not be ‘in the jar’ and are usually geared more towards single or double serving meals in a bag, but they can be used easily translated to your family serving size.
A caveat to these kinds of recipes is that they may often use oils/fats while cooking and meats. For long-term storage, omit the oils and fats , and look to freeze-dried meats for more optimal storage.
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Dried Fruityour Browser Indicates If You’ve Visited This Link
Dried Fruit nutritional facts and foodrecipes which use Dried Fruit. Dried fruits are those from which most of the water content is removed. Raisins, dates, prunes, figs, apricots, peaches, apples and pears are conventional dry fruits that are either sun-dried, dried in heated wind tunnels, drums dried or freezedried.
Best Electrolyte Powder: Vitalyte Electrolyte Replacement Drink Mix
In our blind taste test, Vitalyte Electrolyte Replacement Powder won the day. It got rave reviews for its refreshing flavor and lack of artificial taste.
One tester described it as very mild, but super tasty and refreshing. Another said it tastes like electrolytes, no weird flavors or fake sugar.
It dissolved very easily, with just a few shakes of a Nalgene, and it never separated out or settled to the bottom of our water bottles.
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Paleo Meals Summit Savory Chicken
It can be tricky to find backpacking foods that fit with the paleo or keto diets because carbohydrates are such an essential macronutrient especially when youre out being active.
Paleo Meals gives you an incredibly tasty freeze-dried chicken and vegetable dish that is perfect for anyone following the paleo diet. Youll need to stock up if youre planning to share, though each pack only contains a single serving of chicken and veggies, though it does have a whopping 41 grams of protein packed into each serving.
If youre concerned about a lack of carbs for energy, pair it with some pasta, rice or instant mashed potatoes.
Best Freeze Dried Meals : Backpackers Pantry
Backpackers Pantry is another one of our top freeze-dried meal choices.
Their meal flavors are slightly more adventurous than Mountain House, and Backpackers Pantry makes an impressive variety of meatless options. These meals are also nice to have on hand if you do eat meat, but want to mix things up with some meatless meals.
While their freeze-dried meals arent usually available at Walmart, I have seen them in person at REI. Also, the meals are fairly easy to buy online.
So far, my favorite is their Backpacker Pantrys Pad Thai. Its both vegan and gluten-free, and was surprisingly delicious.
Looking for something warm and cozy? Try Backpacker Pantrys Three Sisters Stew.
For extra calories, try scooping the beans and rice into a tortilla and rolling it into a burrito!
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Go Nuts The Right Way
Another way to get hiking protein in lightweight, tasty form: raw nuts.
Why not salted and roasted and flavored?
Unless youre hiking through extreme heat conditions, you dont need that much salt throughout the day.
- Its hard on your kidneys, which are struggling to maintain the correct water balance.
- You dont want to be more thirsty than you already will be as you hike.
- Also, your taste buds will get conditioned to huge amounts of stimulating salts, sugars and flavorings, leaving everything else you eat flat and tasteless.
Here is my favorite raw trail mix, pre-mixed, but nothing says you cant customize your own particular pairings of nuts and dried fruit to bring harmonious relations with carbs and proteins to your digestive system!
More tips on the best backpacking nuts right here!
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How Do I Feed Freeze
Freeze-dried dog food can be fed either dry or rehydrated. If you choose to feed the product dry, be sure your pet has access to plenty of water at mealtime.
If your pet doesnt usually drink much water, or if youre concerned they may not get enough, then rehydrating the food with cool or warm water before feeding is probably a good idea.
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Are Dried Strawberries Healthy
Freeze dried strawberries carry all of the benefits of regular strawberries including dietary fiber and vitamin-c. Freeze dried strawberries are great for digestive health, regulating blood sugar, and can boost your immune system.
Its no wonder why so many people are interested in how to freeze dry strawberries. They are easy to make, delicious, and full of nutrients.