How To Clean Out Your Fridge Before Vacation - Tips for Freshness
You're heading on a trip in a few days, and you don't want to go shopping again for food you won't be able to eat while you're gone. The solution? Use up what's already in your pantry and fridge with creative recipes designed to incorporate leftovers or create meals that'll be ready for defrosting when you get home. There's no muss, no fuss, no spending money on eating out after vacationing, and best of all, no spoiled food to come home to. What better way to be vacation-ready?
Soups and Sandwiches: If you have a little bit of this and a little bit of that in your fridge, create a soup you can feast on until you leave for vacation — or freeze until you get home. You'll have used up what's in your fridge and freezer without spending a dime more. Add a sandwich to the mix to eat up your bread. To make a quick soup, gather lingering ingredients such as veggies and leftover proteins, like the chicken breasts you grilled the night before. Add some broth, seasonings, and sauce to the pot and simmer for a bit on the stove or in a slow cooker. Try some of these soups with fall harvest ingredients, or make a savory Sausage and Vegetable Stew.
From Farm to Freezer: Plenty of foods can go into your freezer. Surprisingly enough, you can put uncooked bacon in the freezer along with bananas (with or without skin), butter, hard and semi-hard cheeses, chocolate and grapes. These items freeze and defrost beautifully. You can freeze eggs and milk, but make sure you know the right way. Freeze eggs if they're hardboiled or out of the shell. Never freeze raw eggs in the shell. Whisk them and freeze in an airtight container instead. Frozen and defrosted milk is best for baking and cooking rather than for your cereal. Learn more about preserving food while you're away in our article about 20 Foods You Didn't Know You Could Freeze.
Pack Some Protein: You might even want to use up your eggs and oats by making some protein snacks to munch on during your trip. Once you make homemade granola bars, you may never go back to packaged again. Whip some up and have them ready for noshing quickly with recipes like No-Bake Chewy Granola Bars, No-Bake Peanut Butter Granola Bars, or Chocolate Granola Bars.
Live on Smoothies: If you have an abundance of fruits and vegetables, not to mention juices and milk, use them all up in healthy smoothies until you leave for vacation. Use up berries and other ripe or frozen fruits like pineapple, bananas, and leafy greens. For best results, rely on tried-and-true smoothie recipes that have taste-tested combinations of greens like the Green Goddess, which combines cucumber, grapes, and Granny Smith apples. If you have pineapple or avocados on their last legs, try the Pineapple Avocado Detox Smoothie. To use up a bunch of berries, make this Mixed Berry Smoothie recipe.
When you're back from your trip, give your refrigerator and pantry a fresh start by ordering online from Food Lion to Go. It's a stress-free way to pick up items or have groceries delivered right to your door. Your order will always be applied to your Shop & Earn MVP Monthly Rewards account, too. Visit Food Lion to find out more details.