Freeze-Dried Food Items

5 Freeze-Dried Food Items I Recommend You Store

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One of my secrets to saving money on my grocery bill is this list of 5 freeze-dried food items. I have other ways as well, but these are my five favorite go-to foods in my pantry. The awesome thing about these is that they come in a can already pre-washed, chopped, diced, or sliced. You gotta love that!

You will never run out of the items you normally pick up at the grocery store if you store some freeze-dried food items like these. If you have a garden, of course, you will use the items you harvest during your growing season.

What I’m talking about is going to the grocery store to pick up some fresh vegetables for that favorite recipe you want to prepare. The more I stay away from shopping, the more money I save. If you see a lady with gray hair walking fast down each aisle to grab and stash stuff in her shopping basket, it may just be me. I’m on a mission when I hit that store with my list, yes, I always have a list. I call it “get in and get out.” Grocery shopping is not my favorite thing to do.

Grocery Shopping

Sometimes people ask me, “How much do you spend on groceries every month?” Here’s the deal, I live 10-12 miles from the nearest grocery store, so I have to take into account gas money, my time, and the amount of money I will spend if I drive there. My secret is going to my pantry instead of the local grocery store. I stock my pantry when freeze-dried food items go on sale.

What Is Freeze-Dried Food

Let me explain what freeze-dried food is in a nutshell. The first step to freeze-dried food begins with freezing. The second step is the frozen food is placed in a vacuum chamber under low heat. Then the third step starts when the frozen water crystals evaporate directly from ice to vapor which is a process called sublimation.

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What’s really nice about freeze-dried food is the fact that it generally lasts longer in your storage stash, depending on the manufacturer. Please always look at the cans and see the shelf-life. You can eat the food directly out of the can, and therefore, it uses a whole lot less fuel, if any, when it comes to meal preparation.

Freeze-dried foods usually have an open shelf-life of 1-2 years. Here again, please look at the #10 can or on the website of the said company for details.

Pros: Lasts 20-25 years, depending on the company where you purchase the food. You can also eat the food directly out of the can. You do not need to slice, chop, or cut the food into bite-size pieces.

Cons: it is more expensive, in most cases. Remember, you do use less fuel to prepare meals using freeze-dried foods.

5 Freeze-Dried Food Items

I’m only spotlighting Thrive Life freeze-dried food today. If you are wondering if I sell it, I do not. My goal is to educate on my website and to learn from my readers as well. So, let’s get started today.

1. Onions/Chopped & Sliced

How Can I Use These

  • 1 cup freeze-dried equals 1 cup fresh
  • Sliced onions are great on Homemade Pizza
  • Stir fry dishes
  • Add to hamburger for tacos
  • Add to hamburger for spaghetti
  • Add to a pot of soup
  • Egg omelets
  • Creamy Sausage Potato Soup
  • These are great for White Chili
  • They are fabulous in Breakfast Casseroles
  • These are perfect in Homemade Sloppy Joes
  • These are perfect to put in Meals In A Jar (short-term storage only)

Thrive Life says, “Add 1/3 cup of water to 1 cup of Chopped Onions; let sit covered for 5-10 minutes or until tender. Fresh equivalent, 1 cup dry = 1 cup fresh (nearly one 4 oz. package). “


25 years unopened in optimal storage conditions (please do not store them in a hot garage)

2 years when opened (please remove the oxygen absorber and throw it out)

2. Celery

How Can I Use These

Thrive Life says, “Add ⅓ cup of water to 1 cup of THRIVE™ Celery. Let sit for 5–10 minutes, then drain any excess water. Fresh equivalent, 1 cup dry = about 2 stalks.”

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25 years unopened in optimal storage conditions (please do not store them in a hot garage)

2 years when opened (please remove the oxygen absorber and throw it out)

3. Red, Yellow, & Green Bell Peppers

How Can I Use These

  • Casseroles
  • Omelets, yay!! We always have bell peppers ready to go now!!
  • Soups
  • Homemade Vegetarian Chili
  • Chili
  • Stir fry
  • Pizza
  • Rice dishes
  • Bean burritos

Thrive Life says, “Add 1/3 cup of water to 1 cup of peppers; let sit covered for 3-5 minutes or until tender. Fresh equivalent, 1/3 cup dry = about 1 bell pepper; about 2 green chili peppers.”


25 years unopened in optimal storage conditions (please do not store them in a hot garage)

1 year when opened (please remove the oxygen absorber and throw it out)

4. Potato Dices

How Can I Use These

  • Mashed potatoes
  • Potato Salad
  • Creamy soups
  • Creamy chowders

Thrive Life says, “Add 4 cups of hot water to 1 cup of potatoes and let sit until tender. Let potatoes soak for 3-5 minutes until tender. Drain water. Fresh equivalent: 1 cup dry = about 1/2 large potato.”


25 years unopened in optimal storage conditions (please do not store them in a hot garage)

2 years when opened (please remove the oxygen absorber and throw it out)

5. Green Onions

How Can I Use These

  • Add to steamed rice
  • Add to steamed brown rice
  • These are great with cooked quinoa
  • Just sprinkle on top of soups right out of the can
  • Sprinkle on top of your 7-layer bean dip (layer beans, sour cream, guacamole, grated cheese, chopped tomatoes, chopped black olives, and green onions right out of the can)

Thrive Life says, “Add 1/4 cup of lukewarm water to 1 cup of Green Onions and let sit for 2-3 minutes or until tender. Fresh equivalent: 1 cup dry = 6 1/2 cup stalks.”

Please note, I rarely hydrate them, I use them dry more often than not.


25 years unopened in optimal storage conditions (please do not store them in a hot garage)

1 year when opened (please remove the oxygen absorber and throw it out)

Final Word

Here’s the deal, there are many freeze-dried food items we can store, but these are my top 5 that I use almost every day. I never have an onion go bad, moldy bell peppers, green onions never go slimy, and I always have some potatoes ready to use in any recipe. It’s all about cooking from scratch and using food from our pantry. You will love it, I promise. Thanks for prepping, we need to stay on it, my friends. May God bless this world, Linda

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  1. I love your site and look forward to your advice. One request I’d like to make is about your recipes. Is there anyway you could set it up so that we could view all your recipes by name in order to select the one we are interested in without having to go back through all your posts until we reach what we want. Just a list would be great. I was looking for your Ebleskiver recipe and really didn’t have time to keep going back through your posts until I found it. I wanted to know if I could make them in a muffin tin or a mini muffin tin as I do not have an Elbleskiver pan-in fact, until you wrote about them I had never heard of them.


    1. Hi Sandra, you may want to type in the word in the “SEARCH”, I “tag” every post so you can find them. If you look at the black line with the words: Home-Recipes-Food Storage-Ebooks-Categories-My Favorites-About-Contact……then you will see the little magnifying glass deal. Click on the magnifying deal and then you enter the word you are looking for. I hope that helps. As far as the muffin tins, the only issue would be turning the Ebelskivers over in the oven midway. It’s worth a try! Linda

  2. Linda, thank you for your great info and list. I like your suggestion of how to use them.

    We strive stick to the basics: wheat/grains dry beans/lentils, and have come up with amazing ways to enhance using these by having a lot of spices/herbs/flavorings, and doing some sprouting.

    Our list of dried/freeze dried….
    dried chopped onions
    potato flakes
    potato slices
    shoestring carrots (from Honeyville grains) celery
    bell pepper mix

    apple slices, strawberries, banana chips, raspberries, peaches

    It can get crazy trying to figure what to store and what works for each of us as we all have different tastes. I just tried to keep notice of what we used a lot of, plus
    tastes we loved and would miss in an emergency situation.
    Also have trained our tastes over the years to accept healthy grains/wheat and dry beans/lentils. As you know, in an emergency we can’t just jump into using basic storage items that we aren’t used to.
    I have so many ways to use lentils that we could go a month or more using them everyday . Same with grains and wheat.
    Thus now plan daily meals this way:

    Dry beans/lentils
    Vegetable based meal

    (meat sparingly in one of those meals)

    1. Hi Janet, wow, now I need to go get some shoestring carrots from Honeyville!! Great tip! I love that we can share ideas with each other!! I love the bell pepper mix too! My goal is to help people realize they can stay out of the grocery stores if they stock their pantry. Thanks for the reminder on the lentils, I need to buy those again. Life is so good if we know how to cook from scratch!! Linda

      1. Hi Linda, I really like your lofty goal to help people realize they can stay out of the grocery stores if they stock their pantry. Sadly, grocery stores are now a huge bloodsucker of our money and health if we are not very wise and prayerful.

        Lentils, low in calories and high in nutrition!! We store/use red lentils and green. Both fairly common. Red lentils break down in cooking like split peas do. I actually prefer brown lentils over green but they are getting harder to buy at a decent price, and are the same as far as green lentils in cooking and use.
        So……red lentil tomato soup is a fave, as are lentil tacos in our family. Chocolate lentil cake, apple lentil cake. Lots n’ lots of lentil soups, we especially like it with chicken and chicken stock. Mexi lentils n’ brown rice: we then make different meals from this…..topped with cheese; taco salad; mexi taco soup; burritos; tostados, over mashed potatoes topped with cheese. Red lentil curry soup topped with cilantro Greek yogurt; lentil curry and rice; green lentil soup with coconut milk and Indian spices; lemony lentil soup (uses red lentils); honey bbq lentils; Italian lentil wheat stew (yumm);
        Carmelized onion lentils n’ eggs; lentil feta salad; lentil potato soup; lentil spaghetti; lentil hamburger chili. To name a few

  3. I like your list as I just love to add onions, green peppers, celery and green onions to dishes. And my favorite side dish are potatoes except the potatoes require peeling and removal of bad spots, so sometimes I don’t want to bother. But worse thing is when they suddenly go bad and one has to find rice corn or noodles.

    Also, considering the cost of processed versus fresh, I like having canned or frozen foods at home to allow for quick meals. You pass on all that preparation time, there is no waste material as the foods are ready to go right into the pan, pot or casserole dish. I like fresh foods, but used to chop, slice, dice and freeze vegetables to preserve them, reduce waste and provide convenience. So, there really isn’t a difference other than the extra work. Cost wise the cheaper option just depends on what those foods are selling for at the time of purchase.

    When I get a chance I am going to look at the cost of some freeze dried foods, meats in particular (No need to worry about defrosting ahead of time) as cooking can be fun, but often times it’s a time stealing chore. In my household a little convenience would be appreciated and allow more time for other things.

    PS: Love your book! So well done.

    1. Hi Frank, oh thank you, you are so nice! I’m with you the more food I have at my house, the better. I’m thankful for my pressure cooker when using frozen meat. Oh, and cheap cuts of meat!!! LOL! It makes the meat super tender, even stew meat. I need to figure out how to do a video!!! Thanks again, my friend, Linda

  4. It’s getting harder and harder to order freeze dried or any other food storage things. I wish the process was easier. I would like to buy a #10 can of freeze dried food a month. I am elderly and can’t maneuver the internet orders. I would like to be able to buy a mix of 6 cans of freeze dried food sometimes too. I just can’t find an easy way to do it. Maybe I would buy a case of I freeze dried celery, onions, bell peppers, green onions, potatoes, and hamburger, but I can’t figure it out. IT JUST SHOULDN’T BE THAT DIFFICULT. If you’re in the business it should be easier to do.

    1. Christine ~
      Thrive Life has a monthly way of ordering. From their website:
      How does the delivery service work?
      This is an ongoing delivery system where customers can pick their products and receive regular scheduled deliveries. Customers have full control of their deliveries, which means they pick the products they receive, they pick the day their delivery processes, they control the price point, and they can also skip a delivery or cancel at any time.
      Simple Plate can only be purchased through the Delivery Service.
      Customers can also order our other grocery products in the Delivery Service such as a can of sliced onions, muffin mixes, and more.

      Hope this helps you with your food ordering. Also, if you are, like me, a single person household, they have Pantry Cans – much smaller than the #10 cans. They store more easily AND when opened, they are easier to “finish” before their expiration date (or best by date). I prefer the Pantry Cans for this very reason. I do store some #10 cans but most of my FD storage is in the Pantry Can size. Also, I have never been disappointed with their food products.

    2. Hi Christine, I wish we were neighbors I could help you. I know a girl that can help if you are interested. Her name is Jodi from Food Storage Made Easy. I order my monthly order online through her. She will help you, she is so patient. Let me get her email. Christine are you on Facebook? I will link you to her. Linda

  5. Hey, Linda and everyone: Thank you kindly for reminding me that I need to get back to using our Harvest Right Freeze Drier. I have not used it recently, once the gardening Harvest Season was pretty much over, but it certainly is time to get back to it! We have some venison in the freezer that would be a good idea for Fr. Drying, as it doesn’t contain a bunch of fat like some ground meats do. I don’t love freeze drying fatty items, because the fat tends to splatter all over the place and then go moldy if you don’t realize it needs cleaning up asap. Cheese, on the other hand (though fatty), freeze dries really easily and is so yummy right out of the package.

    We have loved our Fr. Drier right from the first batch of food we Fr-Dried. Just be aware of the fact that even when you pre-freeze the foods you want to Fr. Dry, your electric bill is going to go up! Otherwise, it is a flavor saver!! We adore the freeze-dried strawberries, especially. BUT you really should pierce or slice in two most fruits/berries that are round, or sometimes they don’t come out correctly OR may not get dry enough. We have also not had great luck with blackberries, either. Everything else is wonderful! I especially love to freeze-dry the big bulk 5# packages of frozen carrots, celery or whatever veggies from Azure Standard, that are so much cheaper than the 10 oz. packages per lb. We were looking to get more Vit. A in our stockpile, when I discovered Azure had those 5 lb. boxes with diced carrots, sweet potatoes, etc. LOVE those! Inexpensive and already frozen, so you can start your first trays immediately and freeze the rest until you want to Fr.Dry more to add some to soups or make your bags of peas into peas and carrots! LOVE Azure Standard and LOVE their bulk veggies (includes chopped onions, too). Thanks, Linda, for reminders of things to add on to my March order, so I can freeze-dry some more veggies! Oh, and they also sell organic instant potatoes that are pretty good, too. We initially got those for storage, but now use them when things are crazy-busy! We bought the huge 40# bag to split with other prepper friends! When cooking, I just add in some onion powder to give them more flavor. Like that, they are easy and GREAT tasting!

    1. HI Jess, oh I love your comment, you and matt know how to use them!! Food storage is such a necessity for all. of us and the cheaper the better with good quality of course. Linda

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