I am in college and I barely have any time to cook meals even on weekends. I usually store preserved food that can be easily prepared by frying or microwave. It just worries me that some items are stocked in my fridge for a long time because I tend to also eat out on a daily basis. Is this okay? How long can I freeze lunch meat?
Processed food is the most convenient choice for people who have busy lives. Knowing that these are processed food and probably packed with preservatives, we become forgetful to the point of being complacent in checking whether the food is still edible.
Since lunch meat is cured, it can stay in your freezer for up to two months whether it is opened or unopened as long as the freezer is below temperature. It is important that the lunch meats are packed properly and refrigerated immediately once you arrived from the grocery store.
Can You Freeze Lunch Meat?
Lunch meat is one of the most on-the-go foods for students and professionals with hectic schedule. This is also the working parents’ quick solution for their kids’ lunch packs.
Though lunch meats are practically cured meat, you should still be conscious in the storage duration of the lunch meat in your freezer.
Before storage, make sure that the good is properly packaged by the store. Put the lunch meat at the bottom of your grocery list to ensure that it will be picked last to avoid prolonged exposure to the high temperature on your way home. This may affect the quality of the meat.
Within two hours of purchase, refrigerate it immediately to avoid foodborne illnesses. A temperature of 90 degrees and above is bad for the meat, and should be refrigerated within one hour for such conditions.
Lunch meats can stay in your freezer for up to two months, whether it’s opened or unopened. However, if an expiration date is stated in the packaging, strictly follow it and consume the meat by the date stated. If your freezer does not work, an opened lunch meat can stay in your refrigerator for three to five days while you can store the unopened one up to two weeks.
Before consuming lunch meat, defrost it first by putting it in the refrigerator. However, you cannot freeze it again once thawed.
Freeze your Lunch Meat Immediately
Undeniably, lunch meat is the most convenient meal choice for those who are always on the go. The more you consume it, the more that we should be wary of the expiration date and storage duration of this meat in our freezer.
- Put it at the bottom of your grocery list. Pick it lastly to minimize prolonged exposure to the external environment.
- Always make sure that the packaging is sealed well. This can affect the quality of the meat especially the moisture once you put it in the freezer.
- Store the lunch meat immediately – ideally, within two hours of purchase. However, if temperature exceeds 90 degrees, store it within an hour.
- Check for ‘used by’ dates. If not stated, you can store it in your freezer for up to two months.
- Once defrosted or thawed, you can’t freeze lunch meat again. Consume it immediately.
- Always take note of the duration the meat has been staying in your freezer.
How To Use Up Extra/Leftover Lunch Meat?
Lunch meat is a convenient and tasty option for a quick meal. But what do you do when you have extra lunch meat? Here are five delicious ways to use up your leftover lunch meat:
- Make a sandwich – The classic way to use up leftover lunch meat is to make a sandwich. Just add some lunch meat and cheese to some bread, and you’ve got a quick and easy meal that’s perfect for on the go.
- Make wraps – Lunch meat also makes a great filling for wraps. Just add some lunch meat, lettuce, and tomato to a tortilla, and you’ve got a healthy and delicious meal in no time.
- Make a salad – Lunch meat can also be used to make a tasty salad. Just add some lunch meat, greens, and your favorite dressing, and you’ve got a healthy and filling meal.
- Make soup – Lunch meat can also be used to make a delicious soup. Just add some lunch meat and veggies to a pot of broth, and you’ll have a hearty meal in no time.
- Make a casserole – Leftover lunch meat can also be used to make a tasty casserole. Just add some lunch meat, cheese, and pasta or rice to a baking dish, and you’ll have a delicious and easy meal that’s perfect for feeding a crowd.
So there you have it – five delicious ways to use up your leftover lunch meat. Next time you find yourself with extra lunch meat, try one of these recipes and enjoy!
Lunch Meat Recipes
Not only pleasant to the eyes, but the vibrant colors of this Turkey Ham Wrap also reflect its colorful taste.
Tired of the same lunch meat you get from the deli nearby? Try this homemade lunch meat recipe you can do by yourself.
Another lunch meat made out from Turkey. The variety of spices used for this will definitely intrigue your taste buds.
Yes, you can freeze lunch meat. Frozen lunch meat will last for 2-3 months. Keep in mind that the quality of your frozen meal will suffer over time. It is not recommended to keep it longer than that. Be sure to follow these instructions before freezing it: separate the slices, wrap them individually in cling wrap, place the wrapped slices in a freezer bag, seal tightly and label with today’s date.
How do you plan to freeze your lunch meat? Share your experience with me in the comment section below. I am always eager to hear from my readers!