Freezer Friendly

My Vacuum Sealer Is My Childhood Dream Come True — Storage Smarts

As a kid in the late '90s, I had the perfect weekend ritual: I'd put on my slippers, pour a bowl of Corn Pops, and curl up in front of the TV. I'd flip past ABC's morning cartoon lineup, past live-action adventure shows, and the weekly music video countdown, until I found it: the FoodSaver infomercial.

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How To Make Homemade Copycat Kind Bars — Baking Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Kind Bars are the snack bar that I always reach for when I really want a candy bar but don't want the resulting sugar crash. Full of nuts and seeds held together with a sweet-sticky glue of brown rice syrup, these bars are sweet, crunchy, a little salty, and sometimes gilded in chocolate. They are totally crave-worthy in their own right!

But Kind Bars are kind of budget-busting when I've got five dinners, seven breakfasts, and seven lunches to shop for my family of four. So I set to work making these snack bars at home. Yes, there are some specialty ingredients that are an up-front investment, but there's still a huge cost savings.

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Recipe: Ham and Cheddar Lunch Box Muffins — Quick and Easy Lunch Recipes

Take the major players from your favorite sandwich, turn them into a savory muffin, and suddenly your lunch routine is instantly more exciting. Inspired by the classic combo of ham and cheese, these hearty, savory muffins are mixed with a touch of cornmeal for some extra heft and texture, and loaded with thick-cut chunks of ham, sharp cheddar cheese, and a pinch of chives. Sounds good, right?

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Recipe: Easy Ranch Quick Bread — Recipes from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Leela Cyd)

I love quick breads because they usually don't require an electric mixer — a little elbow grease and a rubber spatula is enough to whip them up. But they're usually on the sweet side, with banana or pumpkin bread being the most common varieties. It turns out quick breads are also a great base for savory flavors, too. This one is seasoned with all the flavors of a fresh homemade ranch dressing and made with under-appreciated cottage cheese for the best overall texture.

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Recipe: Easy Ranch Quick Bread — Recipes from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Leela Cyd)

I love quick breads because they usually don't require an electric mixer — a little elbow grease and a rubber spatula is enough to whip them up. But they're usually on the sweet side, with banana or pumpkin bread being the most common varieties. It turns out quick breads are also a great base for savory flavors, too. This one is seasoned with all the flavors of a fresh homemade ranch dressing and made with under-appreciated cottage cheese for the best overall texture.

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How To Make Easy No-Cook Strawberry Freezer Jam — Cooking Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Have you ever had summer fruit so sweet, so juicy, and so fragrant that the mere thought of boiling it away with sugar until jammy made you just plain sad? This summer, on a quest to preserve strawberries from a sunny afternoon of U-pick fun, I discovered no-cook freezer jam. The resulting jam is so vibrant and fresh-tasting, it's as if the ripe fruit never met heat and its succulent qualities were frozen in time by the freezer.

Regular jam-making and canning are old favorites of mine, but freezer jam is freedom from those times when the hours of boiling fruit and water baths are not only arduous, but also impractical. No-cook freezer jam is the answer for anyone who wants to make jam, but doesn't have the time, space, or patience required for traditional jam-making. The fact that it turns stunning fruit into an impeccable jam will make you fall in love with it.

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