shopping for first freezer- advice?

nccmamaFebruary 22, 2008

I am about to purchase some frozen beef from a rancher friend, so I need to buy my first freezer. I am posting here, because I assume that most of you own a freezer in order to do OAWC. I would like to incorporate a bit of that myself once I have available freezer space to do so.

Does anyone have any recommendations on size or type? My husband wants to go with the smallest that will accommodate the quarter of beef that we are getting, which would be about a 7.5 cu.ft. freezer. I think that is too small and want to go larger. Do you all wish that you had more freezer space available? I would like to freeze leftovers and stock up on grocery purchases when on sale, etc. I have a family of 5.


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I have a chest deep freezer 70" long (don't remember cubic feet). A chest deep freezer will keep the cold in better than an upright.

I use paper grocery sacks to organize contents. This makes it easy to move a sack over to find other things.

For a large family the large freezer is the way to go. I purchase many things on sale. I leave items in original packaging and then slip them into a plastic bag for storage in the freezer.

Some foods I repackage into smaller amounts. You name it and I probably have frozen it!! I keep many things in the freezer that does not need to be, but, there are only 2 of us now and freezing helps keep food fresher for longer period of time.

Labeling and dating contents is very important.

At one time when all 5 kids were home I had 2 large chest freezers. Saved money on groceries for sure.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2008 at 9:58PM
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Is your chest freezer frost free or do you have to routinely remove contents and defrost it?

    Bookmark   March 10, 2008 at 4:52PM
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Freezers are generally not frost free like refrigerator freezers. It makes sense as there is more air circulating in the frost free which can creates freezer burn. I defrost my 15cu. chest freezer in early summer before my garden is ready. I have six compartments in mine which helps keep items orderly. Just my husband and me so find it is a good size and save by buying in bulk and doubling up when items are on sale.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2008 at 8:31AM
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We used to have a chest freezer, but a few years ago got an upright. I LOVE IT. It's about the size of a normal refrigerator (slightly smaller), and it opens like one. No digging around, moving stuff, trying to find what's on the bottom. Krissie seems to have a great plan with organizing in paper bags, etc., but I still love not having to lift anything. Frozen meat can be pretty heavy!

And I agree...labeling and dating is sooooooo important. I mark everything - even if it has the store label with sell by - that doesn't tell me how many days I have after I defrost. I'm not left wondering did I buy that with one day to go or four?

Also, because I'm just this fanatical about stuff...I have a list that I keep on the side of the refrigerator that lists what and how many I have in the freezer. When I'm trying to figure out what to make or do my grocery shopping, I don't have to go look.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2008 at 3:15PM
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Did you ever get your freezer? I have two up right freezers and both are frost free. I love not having to clean them out that often. One is in the kitchen and the bigger one is in my attached garage. I freeze a lot of things in mine. Sometimes find great buys at the grocery and also freeze my flour for all the baking I do. Usually freeze all the wild black raspberries I can pick out of our woods and of course lots of things from the garden. I would never buy one that was not frost free. I have had those before too much work for me at my age.


    Bookmark   April 30, 2008 at 8:20AM
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Where do you all keep your freezers, and how far away are they from your kitchen?

I would LOVE an extra freezer, but I am afraid the only spot we have for it is in the basement. Is that a huge inconvenience to have to walk all the way down underneath the house to grab a loaf of bread or to store Christmas cookies, etc??

    Bookmark   August 11, 2008 at 9:16PM
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Inconvenience is really subjective. I will say this, having a separate freezer is normally not something you work out of. Use a separate freezer for long-term storage and use your frig/freezer for your everyday needs. Then, as you need, restock the frig/freezer from the other freezer. Most will find that much more convenient. On your examples, I'd keep the bread upstairs and the Chrismas cookies downstairs, unless you're sneaking cookies daily! :)

I was concerned about this when I bought my freezer. I bought a 9 cu. ft upright and set the microwave on top of it. Very convenient. However, for one person it wasn't practical. So I quit using it. I've thought about starting it up again but can't talk myself into it. I can't even give the thing away! The other thing I disliked about it was it added heat to the kitchen and during the summer that was not welcome. So when I looked at that, the cost of operation, the amount of food I threw away, and I started going to the store more often, well, I decided there wasn't a good reason to keep using it. For some they can be great. But you do need to learn how to properly utilize a freezer. People think they're going to save gads of money and then buy a side of beef and it freezer burns on them. Ugh.

I was looking at a little Amana chest freezer that had a freezer drawer on the bottom. Great idea. Really liked the idea for the separate areas.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2008 at 3:34AM
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My freezer is a 15 cubic ft. frostfree Energy star from Sears. 2 yrs old. My electric bill instantly was cut in 1/2 that is big savings. I cook for parents & myself, I store bread, vegetables, cookies,candies I make & give for xmas, meats, casseroles,pecans & walnuts my relatives give me.Juices, freezer jams & frozen fruit from my garden. I "eat" out of it. It is in my garage 4 ft from my kitchen. Without it I would eat very poorly, can't have AC as it gives me migraines so regular fridge couldn't hold it all. I get meat on sale,bread on sale, it is real money saver.It is full most of time & everything is rotated. I added a couple of wire baskets to keep some things from sliding around. I even put 2 suet blocks for the birds in there as weather suddenly went hot & would have had it melt & goo in yard. Now birds will get a treat when weather cools.I make applesauce from my trees & it's in the door, I make what I figure I will eat, even freeze sliced apple pies so I can just take out what I need. Life is so much easier. I used to almost "fall in my family's freezer as a kid, it was awful. My parents got upright 16 cu. ft Energy star recently too, they love decrease in electric bill & it is full, we cook &freeze, rewarm in microwave. Real timesaver & so much easier for them ages 86 & 92. Check out freezers on Internet & measure your space to be sure it would fit. With gas prices up, nice to not have to run to store all the time for bread, vegs. etc

    Bookmark   October 5, 2008 at 10:48AM
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