It adds only minutes to preparation time to make a double soup quantity you can freeze, but as you may have discovered, some styles of soup and ingredients freeze better than others.
Here are five handy tips on freezing soups that deliver perfect results every time. And don’t forget – Pac ‘n Vac instant vacuum containers can go straight into the freezer, have clear plastic lids so you can check the contents without opening and designed to be stackable, taking up minimum space in your freezer.
1. Cool the soup completely before freezing it
Cooling to room temperature is fine, but a hot soup put straight in the freezer could raise the freezer’s temperature, which can be detrimental to food safety.
2. Fill the container but don’t over-fill it
Because the soup will expand when it freezes, you need to allow 2 or 3 centimeters of space at the top for this to happen. Equally, don’t underfill your container as this risks freezer burn on the surface, which can spoil the taste
3. Freeze pasta-based soup without the pasta in it
Pasta-based soups are thrifty, filling and make great sense when you’re feeding a family. But once defrosted, the pasta often loses its texture. So make your soup without the pasta element and boil, drain and add the pasta when you have defrosted the soup and it’s ready to reheat.
4. Follow the same rule for dairy products or coconut milk
For soups that contain milk or cream, like bisques, ‘cream of’ soups and chowders, make and freeze the soup without the dairy element and add it when you have defrosted and partially heated the soup. That way you avoid a grainy or curdled texture.
5. Undercook the vegetables (including potatoes)
When you reheat a soup you continue the cooking process, so if the vegetables are already completely cooked, the result can be a mush. So if you want the texture to include pieces of vegetable or chunks of potato (as opposed to a completely blended mixture), knock a few minutes off the initial cooking time and leave the vegetables slightly ‘al dente’. That way the defrosting and reheating will ensure they are just right when you serve your soup.
Need some soup inspiration? Check out our Butternut Squash soup recipe – why not make a double quantity and freeze the other half in a Pac ‘n Vac container for a busy day when you need a quick supper?