Making a large batch of homemade soup and then freezing the leftovers is one way to prepare quick future dinners in advance. All you have to do at mealtime is reheat your stored soup and eat; when you are storing homemade soup, however, you need to take several precautions to avoid food poisoning. This can occur if the soup does not get cold soon enough to prevent germs from growing. Prevent this from happening by following this method for properly chilling and storing your homemade soup.
Things You'll Need
- Homemade soup
- Drain cover
- Shallow plastic storage containers with lids
- Food thermometer
Plug the drain in your kitchen sink with the drain cover.
Fill the sink halfway with equal parts of ice and water. This will create an ice bath that you will use to chill your soup.
Put the bottom of your soup pot into the ice water, taking care to not get the water into the soup.
Stir the soup to chill evenly.
As the soup is chilling, ladle into shallow storage containers, leaving 1/2 inch of space for expansion at the top. The shallow containers will allow for more heat to dissipate from the soup. The faster the soup cools to below 40 degrees (refrigerator temperature), the less likely food-poisoning bacteria can flourish.
Place the bottom of each of the storage bowls into the ice water, as you did with the soup pot, and stir the soup in the storage containers to further chill. You may need to drain some of the ice water to ensure it does not get into the soup containers.
Insert the cooking thermometer into the center of each of the storage bowls. When the soup reads at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, it is ready to be covered and placed in the freezer or refrigerator. If it is still not cold enough, continue to chill it in the ice water.
Keep homemade soups in the refrigerator for up to three days and in the freezer for up to three months.