Food Storage Containers II: Choosing the Best Shape for Freshness and Convenience

assortment of food storage containersNotes: I’ve updated my list of Passover Recipes. You can also check out the most recent Kosher Cooking Carnivals at Batya’s and Yosefa’s.

Think for a moment about how many storage containers you have in your kitchen. Are you using them as efficiently as you can? This is the second part of my series on storage containers. See Introduction: Choosing the Best Material.

Part III: Best Ways to Organize Your Food Storage Containers

  • Size: If your storage container is too big, the center will take a long time to cool and your food will spoil more quickly. Food frozen in a large block can take days to defrost. If you are storing large quantities, you’ll want to separate them into smaller containers. The only time you’ll want a bigger container is for storing large, whole items like chicken, fish or cake.
    Smaller containers will mean washing more items, but if your needs change you can leave one in the refrigerator or freezer. Every time you open a container you allow bacteria to get in, and your food will spoil faster.
  • Shallow containers are good for liquids. They allow the cold air to reach more of the food so it cools faster.
  • Maximize storage space by choosing similar sized containers that can stack or be arranged side by side. Do separate them for cooling or defrosting so that the air can reach all sides.
  • What size do you need? Buy containers that approximate how much you need for the next meal. If you live alone, you will want containers for a single serving. Since I have a large family I divide the soup for one meal into two containers for safer and easier storage.
  • What do you generally store in your containers? If you store cooked whole carrots, you will have less flexibility than with cooked, that can fit in any container.
  • Round or square corners? Round containers take up more space, but it’s slightly easier to remove the food because there are no corners. A plastic spatula helps. Rectangular containers often rounded edges.
  • Is the container’s mouth wide or narrow? Pouring food into a wide opening is easier, but a narrow one is easier to pour out of into something else. Check that the around on the inside of the upper edge is smooth and reached easily with a spatula.

You may also enjoy:

10 Best Tips for Freezing for a Crowd

13 Smart Ways to Manage Leftovers

Why You Should Finish Everything on Your Plate

 

 

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Comments

  1. I definitely prefer square containers, they stack well and take up less space in the fridge. I have round ones, especially Tupperware (some of which is as old as I am and still going strong). I have always preferred plastic, though lately articles have been popping up about how it’s healthier to use glass. Good thing I never threw out the pryex containers, even though they are round. I will have to look for square ones.

  2. Glass with a rubber cover are nice, although heavy.

  3. I know this isn’t your kosher site, but how do your “rules” work following Kosher laws. I all the time seem to be buying new containers because I can’t remember if they held meat or dairy previously…

    • A, I suggest different shapes, sizes or brands for each “gender.” You can also label with tape or nail polish.

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