Freezer cooking is not just about preparing and freezing complete meals. More often than not I utilize this cooking technique to have ready meal starters and staples for easy dinners during the week.
Brown rice is one food that I always have on hand for sides or to include in a recipe. Even though it’s rather simple to cook rice using a rice cooker it still takes over an hour until it’s ready. I don’t know about you but when my kids are hungry screaming for dinner I am not going to sit around waiting for the rice to cook.
Good news is that rice freezes beautifully resulting in no need to cook a batch from scratch every night. Follow my simple tips below to always have prepared fluffy delicious rice straight from the freezer.
Tips for Freezing and Reheating Brown Rice
- Once a week or whenever you are getting low make a large batch of rice. My rice cooker allows me to make 8 cups of brown rice at a time. Of course you could make the rice on the stove top though using a rice cooker is so much easier. In addition they are relatively inexpensive and in my opinion a must have for busy parents who want to easily incorporate rice into their meal plans.
- When the rice is done cooking allow to it to cool slightly. You still want the rice to be warm when you package it up. This helps retain its moisture and will result in nice fluffy and fresh rice when you reheat it.
- Portion the rice out and place in freezer bags. I measure my rice into 1 cup portions because that is typically what I use in my recipes and meal plans. The great thing about freezer cooking and ultimately creating your own freezer meals is you are in control of the portions.
- Put packaged rice into the freezer. Cooked rice will last approximately 3-4 months in the freezer.
- When ready to eat defrost rice in the microwave. First, I run the bag under warm water to remove the rice and place in a microwave safe bowl. Next I will warm it up in the microwave for about 2-3 minutes more or less depending on the amount of rice. Some people warm up the rice in the bag but I prefer to use a bowl because I do not want to take the chance of the bag melting.
- Eat as is or use in any recipe that calls for cooked brown rice. My favorites are Chicken Curry, Turkey “Fried” Rice, and Black Bean and Rice Burritos.
These tips will work for both white and brown rice.
This is a very basic and easy freezer cooking technique that you will find extremely time saving when trying to put together dinners during the week or even to grab on the go for lunches.
What are some of your tips for freezing rice? In what ways has this helped you put together healthy meals for yourself and family?