People often want to opt for the food that can be stored and used later to save time and have something to eat on-the-go. While there are many options available, pasta salads have become one of the preferred choices of meals for many working people and college-going students. As pasta has a rich source of carbohydrates, it makes the meal more satiating. And although the recipe is quite easy to make and a perfect option for taking it for lunch to the workplace, there are several doubts that people have.
Can you freeze pasta salad?
You can freeze the pasta salad if you are planning it to take it with you the other day or even if you have pasta leftovers. But, it should be noted that freezing the pasta salad is not easy as it may seem and you must know the right way of freezing it to consume later. Don’t worry, I have got you covered for knowing the proper way of freezing your pasta salad so that you enjoy your meal with a big smile.
Freezing Pasta Salad
Pasta salad contains three major portions: Pasta, Salad ( vegetables such as broccoli, cucumber, lettuce, tomatoes, etc.) and dressings or sauces. If you freeze all the parts together, there are chances that you might not like the taste of your pasta and end up throwing it or not eating it. So follow these steps for correctly freezing pasta salad:
Step 1: The first and foremost step is to cook the pasta until its al dente. Never over-boil the pasta as the softer they are, the soggier it can become once you take it out of the freezer. So always cook the pasta such that they are firm and still cooked.
Tip: If you have made a large batch of pasta to consume it for more days, divide the batch into the number of servings as per the quantity and store each serving in different containers. Refreezing and defrosting the pasta, again and again, can make them more soggy and it will also not taste good. So always store servings in different containers.
Step 2: Lay the boiled pasta in a tray or an airtight container for storing it. This helps in keeping the pasta in the right form.
Step 3: Store the vegetables that have the property of water retention separately. Vegetables like cucumber and lettuce should not be stored with the boiled pasta as it can make pasta soggier. Store such vegetables in different containers or ziplock bags. Veggies like broccoli, carrots, olives, etc can be stored in the same container along with pasta as they do not have water retention.
Step 4: You can opt for either not storing dressings in the freezer or storing it separately. Sauces like mayonnaise and other ones can curdle up and give a sour taste to your salad. So I would suggest you make small packets of the salad dressings and keep it on your kitchen counter or pantry.
Quick Tips for freezing pasta salad:
- If possible, steam the pasta instead of heating it in the microwave as steaming the pasta can retain the moisture back and improve the taste. Reheating the pasta sometimes results in drying it excessively.
- In case you are not able to steam it and want to microwave, it keeps the settings of defrosting as it will not dry your pasta.
- There are many pasta salad dressings available that you can take with you on-the-go without wasting much time in preparing the salad dressing.
- If possible, cut the veggies freshly before you leave for work as a lot of people do not prefer frozen vegetables. Also, eating fresh vegetables will definitely taste better.
So it is pretty much clear that you can freeze pasta salads and save some time while you are running late for work. You can also try frozen pasta salad, as they intended to eat it cold. You can also let the pasta thaw and then microwave it for getting a better taste. I personally prefer making portions of pasta in large batches and storing them in small containers. But remember you shouldn’t store it for more than a month and consume it as soon as possible. So next time you have pasta leftovers or have boiled excess pasta, you can make the pasta salad and call it a day!