The idea of freeze drying foods sounds appealing to a lot of people. This preservation method retains the most nutrients and tastes better compared to dehydration, plus it’s ideal for long-term storage. Before getting your first home freeze dryer or having a facility freeze dry your products, you might wonder what foods can be freeze dried.
Keep in mind that although freeze drying works for most foods (both plant and animal products), those with very high amounts of fat and sugar are less ideal. Below, we list specific foods that freeze dry well and which ones to avoid.
What Foods Can Be Freeze-Dried?
Whether you love fresh produce, meats, or snacks, the good news is that you won’t run out of options. The best food to freeze dry include the following:
Vegetables, Herbs, and Spices
- Other leafy greens
- Spring onions
Meats, Eggs, and Seafood
- Deli meat (turkey, ham, sausages)
- Raw or cooked eggs
- Cheddar cheese
- Gouda cheese
- Monterey jack cheese
- Parmesan cheese
- Feta cheese
- Blue cheese
- Heavy cream
- Sour cream
- Non-fat milk
- Ice cream
- Oatmeal and fruit bites
- Beef jerky
- Cheese bites
- Mixed fruit chips
- Cakes (strawberry shortcake, cheesecake, etc.)
- Ice cream sandwiches
- Fruit juices
- Plant-based milk (almond milk, cashew milk, coconut milk, oat milk)
- Fruit teas
- Other fruit-infused beverages
Condiments and Sauces
- Ketchup with less sugar and salt
- Tomato sauce
- Full meals (casseroles, pasta, macaroni and cheese, meatballs, etc.)
- Bone broth and soups
- Fully cooked rice
Foods You Can’t Freeze-Dry
Anything with concentrated sugar and that’s high in fat (oils) does not freeze dry properly. Fat, in particular, goes rancid more quickly.
- Nut butters
- Pure chocolate
- Jams and preserves
- Alcoholic drinks, including those that contain high amounts of sugar
In the case of freeze dried meat products with higher fat content, they’re best consumed within a few years. Also, when cooking high-fat meats, such as bacon, make sure to remove excess grease prior to freeze-drying.
Freeze dried foods are great to make at home or even sell if you’re in the healthy food business. This article has shown you that there’s no shortage of products that can be preserved using freeze-drying, from fruits and veggies to snacks and beverages.
Knowing what can be freeze dried and what cannot is only half the battle. Other key considerations include food prep and handling, storage, and using the right settings on your freeze dryer. If you are interested in bulk freeze-drying, we can meet your business needs!
Learn more about what freeze-drying can do for you and why choose Empire Freezing & Drying. Contact us at 973-649-9800.