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TO STORE MEALS:

  • Use shallow containers or freezer bags to help leftovers freeze more quickly and reheat evenly.
  • Divide food into the number of portions you plan to eat later so you'll only need to reheat what you need.
  • For food safety, refrigerate or freeze food as soon as it cools to room temperature.
  • Label containers with name and date (use painter's tape and a permanent marker) so you'll know exactly what's inside.  If necessary, also include reheating instructions.

TO REHEAT:

ON THE STOVE:

  • Add a splash of liquid--anything from water to broth, olive oil, or milk--to add moisture and prevent foods from sticking to the pan.
  • Cover with a lid to trap heat and create steam.
  • Stir frequently to ensure even reheating.

IN THE OVEN:

  • Set the oven no higher than 350°F to keep meats and roasted veggies from drying out.
  • Cover foods loosely with foil to trap heat, especially dense dishes like lasagna and casseroles.
  • Don't forget the broiler!  Use it to re-crisp pizza, breaded, or fried foods.

IN THE MICROWAVE:

  • Place a damp paper towel over the plate to create steam.
  • Place food in a single layer to make sure it reheats evenly—if reheating items like burgers, for instance, separate the burger from the bun.
  • Cook in 1-minute intervals, stirring or turning the food after each burst, to encourage even heating and avoid hot and cold spots.

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