There are many options on the market when it comes to freezer storage, and choosing the right one can be very confusing.
But to store your food in the freezer so that it can last longer and not lose any taste you need to use the very best storage material.
Now in this article to help make that decision easier I will be comparing two popular options, Freezer bags, and Freezer Paper, and help you decide which one is best for your situation.
What are Freezer Paper and Freezer bags?
Freezer paper is a very thick and durable paper that is coated with either a plastic or wax coating on one side whilst the other side of the paper is untreated so that it looks and feels just like regular paper.
Freezer bags on the other hand are specialized plastic bags that are made to store food in the freezer safely. They are usually very thick and durable which is to ensure that they won’t be easy to puncture or tear and to increase the longevity of the bags.
Freezer bags also carry a tight seal that stops air and odors from affecting the meat.
Freezer Paper VS Freezer Bags
- Which can last longer in the Freezer – Freezer bags
- Best at Preventing Freezer burns – A combination of the two
- Easier to use – Freezer bags
- Which is more environmentally friendly – Freezer Paper
- More affordable – Freezer Paper
1. Which storage material can stay longer in the freezer?.
The thicker the material the less likely it will be to puncture or tear in the freezer. And because freezer bags are made entirely of plastic it will be better for long term use in the freezer than freezer paper.
Freezer paper is partially made from paper and will get damaged easily if exposed to moisture, leading to the food being exposed to air.
One the other hand freezer bags are made thicker than freezer paper, which makes them tougher and more durable when it comes to storing food in the freezer. As a result, freezer bags keep food fresh for longer periods of time and prevent or slow down the rate of freezer burn when compared to freezer paper.
I would recommend freezer paper for short term use for storing meat.
Both Freezer paper and freezer bags can potentially last 6 months to a year in the freezer but in my opinion Freezer Bags tends to hold up longer. Now the duration depends greatly on the type of food you are freezing.
2. Which option is better at preventing freezer burns?
Both freezer paper and freezer bags are not guaranteed to prevent freezer burn, but in my experience and research, I have found that using both options together is the best option in securing your food against freezer burn.
So wrapping the food individually with freezer paper then placing it in a freezer bag is the best way to prevent air from affecting the meat.
Freezer burns are the white, dried-out patches that appear on the surface of frozen foods. Although freezer burn won’t make you sick, it makes frozen foods such as meat and produce tough, discolored, and tasteless.
The main culprit in causing freezer burn is air. The air causes frozen food to lose moisture and then oxygen moves in to take its place. Any air left in a storage package dries out the food product by drawing moisture from it and forming a frost coating (freezer burn) inside the package.
Freezer Paper locks out air and locks in moisture because of its plastic coating on one side and the weight of the paper, which is designed to conform closely to the shape of what you’re wrapping. This prevents freezer burn and protects the flavor and color of the meat.
Now if you don’t wrap food properly in the paper, freezer burn occurs easily because if any of the wrapping material doesn’t stick or wrap itself completely to the food it makes your food more susceptible to the air which causes freezer burn.
And freezer bags can also be used to store food in the freezer but you need to remove all the air from the plastic freezer bag, before putting the food in the bag to prevent freezer burns. This is because the bags do not wrap tightly around the food to keep the moisture in and air out so there is still a possibility of freezer burn.
3. Which one is easier to use?
Freezer bags are easier to use than freezer paper. That is why they have gained enormous popularity in the storage world.
Plus they come with built-in designed seals and are made of clear plastic so you can immediately see what food is inside the bag. All you have to do is to place the food in the bag and remove all the air. No wrapping is required and no need to use any freezer tape to seal the bag.
While freezer bags are square-shaped but depending on your needs they are available in a variety of sizes. They also range in sizes from a pint to two gallons.
Freezer paper, however, can be molded to conform to whatever you are trying to freeze. But this usually takes time to wrap your food item individually. You have to wrap your food individually securely against the plastic side of the paper with the paper side of the freezer paper on the exterior. The paper side allows you to write the date and type of food stored.
Now freezer Paper is usually sold by the roll with varying width and length and freezer tape is usually necessary when using freezer paper so as to secure the paper in place so air will not affect the food. Freezer paper has also gained popularity because of its many uses in craft projects.
Both options have there pros and cons but I think when it comes to design some foods work better than some. For example, freezer bags are more suitable for storing certain items such as liquids like soup while I think freezer paper is better for storing cheese.
4. Which one is more environmentally friendly?
Freezing food is one of the safest, easiest ways to preserve food. However, we still need to think of the environmental impact of the materials that we use to freeze our food.
Now even though Freezer Paper is made of mostly paper some brands still use a small amount of plastic on one side. But freezer bags are made almost completely of polyethylene which makes freezer bags have the worst impact on our environment.
You see polyethylene is a type of highly resilient plastic that will takes years to break down. Citation.
Often many of our plastic bags are discarded in the ocean. It is predicted that, by 2050, the mass of plastic in the world’s oceans will exceed the mass of all the fish that live there. These plastics then endanger the wildlife in our ocean and can actually pose a threat to our health when we consume seafood.
So we should all try to reduce the amount of plastic we are using and try to reuse and recycle as much as possible.
5. Price of Freezer Paper vs Freezer bags
Freezer Paper is generally cheaper than freezer bags but of course, you got to consider that some freezer bags are reuseable while freezer paper is not.
Now because they are generally for one-time use and are very low-cost freezer paper is still preferred at the meat or seafood counter for most grocery stores.