Using the Freezer – Cooking with Kids, Part 9

By Ebony Porter, October 26, 2017, Family

Welcome to Cooking with Kids from Bounce Energy! Think of the kitchen as a science lab or a living classroom. It contains so many elements that can provide hands-on learning opportunities for your kids – measuring, learning temperature, time, chemistry, fermentation, and more. Join us as we show you how to introduce your kids to the best room in the house!

We take the freezer for granted as grown ups, but to children, this can be a compartment to the kitchen that’s a bit of a mystery.

To teach your children about the freezer is more of an educational opportunity than it is a safety component. Though if they handle frozen things for too long, they’ll experience that bitter numbing sensation we all have!

Here are some ways to involve your child in the happenings of the freezer, and get them comfortable with one of the kitchen’s most important places.

Using the Freezer - Cooking with Kids, Part 9 | Bounce Energy Blog

Shut the Freezer Door

The biggest rule of thumb with the freezer is to teach your child that when they open it, they must shut it fast! When a freezer is left open, it creates a film of ice across everything, which you want to avoid. And you don’t want to lose that precious cold air that is keeping everything frozen.

Defrosting Frozen Items

Teach your child how to properly defrost things. If it’s a cut of meat, for example, then bring it out of the freezer the night before you plan to cook it and let it slowly defrost in the refrigerator. For frozen baked items, pull it out onto the counter and let it defrost during the day.

Another trick to get things to defrost faster without using the microwave is by placing it in a windowsill with sunlight.

Using and Labeling Freezer Bags

When it’s time for clean up and there’s an overflow of stew, soup, spaghetti sauce or even baked goods, get your child used to the process of writing on a freezer bag what the item inside is, and the date when it was cooked.

Using actual freezer bags is important so your goodies don’t get freezer burn.

Give them the responsibility of this, and later down the line, they will use this practice as adults. Nothing beats the ease of defrosting a healthy meal on a night when no one feels like cooking!

Using the Freezer - Cooking with Kids, Part 9 | Bounce Energy Blog

Filing up the Ice Cube Trays

Most families have ice makers built into their refrigerators, but some, like us, don’t!

When my kids use up ice, it’s their responsibility to fill the trays back up with water. This is a little chore they can get used to doing and stay on top of.

Storing Bulk Foods

One way to encourage your child to use the freezer is to include them in storing bulk items. It’s a great idea to freeze your bulk foods such as grains and flour to avoid the potential for weevils, cockroaches, and other insects of invading.

Grab your permanent marker, freezer bags, and a system for measurement and have them divide the goods evenly. Let them be in charge of the organizational system in your freezer.

You might find your child is better at organizing the freezer than they are their bedroom!

Peeling Frozen Fruits

I am a fan of freezing old bananas to use them at a later date in banana bread, muffins, or a smoothie. But handling those frozen bananas almost freezes my fingers off!

My trick is to peel them under running, temperate water. This allows the items to defrost just a little, but not all the way.

It retains that frozen texture I like for smoothies but allows me to handle the peel. Show your child this little trick!

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