7 Tricks to Keep Your Food Fresh for Longer During the Next Power Outage
A power outage can be rather unpleasant, especially when your fridge stops working, causing your food to spoil very quickly. But having a clear plan of what to do in case of a power cut can save your food. Stay with us to learn some easy and simple ways to help you save your products and nerves the next time the electricity goes out.
Here at Bright Side, we’ve prepared 7 tips and tricks that can help you keep your food fresh and safe as long as you can during a power outage, and we hope you find them useful.
Keep an appliance thermometer in your refrigerator.
Appliance thermometers will help you check the temperature of the food in your refrigerator and freezer when there’s no power. Make sure that the temperature in the freezer is at or below 0°F and the temperature in the refrigerator is at or below 40°F. These are the temperatures that ensure the safety of your food.
Keep the doors of your refrigerator and freezer closed.
During a power outage, make sure that the doors of your refrigerator and freezer stay closed. Closed doors will help the food inside stay cold longer. If you keep the doors closed, the food in the refrigerator can stay fresh for up to 4 hours in the refrigerator, up to 48 hours in a full freezer, and up to 24 hours in a half-full freezer.
Freeze water bottles and use them to cool food in the refrigerator.
Freeze a couple of water bottles in the freezer and then use them to keep the food inside the refrigerator at 40°F or below.
Think of buying some ice.
Having a cooler may come in handy when you need to save food fresh out of the refrigerator. Buying some block ice or frozen gel packs can also be a good idea, especially when you realize that the power outage may last a long time.
Group foods in the freezer.
As we mentioned above, the fuller the freezer is, the longer the food stays fresh in it. It’s better to try to keep your freezer full or at least group the foods in it together in one corner.
Freeze refrigerated food and leftovers.
Think of moving the foods you may not need immediately from the refrigerator to the freezer to keep them safe for longer. These may include leftovers, fresh meat and poultry, and even milk.
Know which foods you can keep and which foods you need to throw away.
No matter how hard you try to keep the right temperature inside your freezer and refrigerator, chances are, it can eventually get higher if the power outage lasts long. It’s rather dangerous to decide which food is still good by tasting it. Here are some guidelines that will help you know which foods you can keep and which you’d better throw away after they were kept for more than 2 hours at a temperature above 40°F.
- You can keep: hard and processed cheeses, butter and margarine, fresh uncut fruits and vegetables, dried fruits, peanut butter, jelly, relish, taco sauce, mustard, ketchup, olives, and pickles. You can also keep bread, waffles, fruit pies, fresh mushrooms, herbs, and spices.
- You should throw away: cooked or uncooked meat, poultry, seafood, soft or low-fat cheeses, milk and cream, cooked pasta, rice, potatoes, fresh fruits and vegetables, cooked vegetables, casseroles, soups, and stews.
See this chart for more information and remember the golden rule: when in doubt, throw it out!
Do you have your own tips on how to make food last longer during a blackout? Share your tips and tricks in the comments!