HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >

glass jars for the freezer?

serious Jan 11, 2009 02:04 AM

I have some quantity of leftover chicken and beef stock and am out of 'normal' freezer containers.
How do old peanut butter or jelly or other glass containers stand up to freezing (of course allowing space for liquid expansion)?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. d
    DGresh RE: serious Jan 11, 2009 02:35 AM

    Do you have zip lock bags? I'd do that before glass, but admit I've never attempted glass.

    2 Replies
    1. re: DGresh
      serious RE: DGresh Jan 11, 2009 02:58 AM

      I agree with you and would have used a zip lock but outta of 'em.

      1. re: serious
        smartie RE: serious Jan 11, 2009 05:43 AM

        I have frozen food in glass jars with no problem. Just don't overfill because the stock expands and pushes the lid out.
        Vodka bottles can go in the freezer with no ill effects!!

    2. billieboy RE: serious Jan 11, 2009 05:50 AM

      I freeze in jars, but I freeze them with no lid or a loose lid then tighten up after they are frozen solid.

      1. im_nomad RE: serious Jan 11, 2009 08:17 AM

        I've got a few mason jars in my freezer and they've been fine as long as the're not overfilled, and even then, it's fine. Ever hear of freezer jam ?

        1. n
          nosh RE: serious Jan 11, 2009 08:50 AM

          I use the leftover glass jars from spaghetti sauce to freeze most of my stock. No problem as long as I leave plenty of room for expansion and defrost in a warm water bath -- there can be breakage if you try to defrost in the microwave.

          1. l
            Liz K RE: serious Jan 11, 2009 08:51 AM

            I've used glass peanut butter jars in the freezer for years, works great!

            1. s
              smartie RE: serious Jan 11, 2009 10:10 AM

              I used to make all my baby food and freeze in the baby food jars.

              1. JudiMorrison RE: serious Sep 8, 2009 10:27 AM

                Well, I've always used spaghetti sauce jars before, too, but this time one of them didn't work! I had lots of leftover homemade pasta sauce. Got out my empty pasta jars, filled two of them, and stuck them in the freezer last week. Went to get them out this morning and one of the jars was cracked/broken all the way around in several places. The second jar was fine. I filled them both the same (probably two full as I now read this thread) and let them cool off before freezing. This is the first time I've had one break. I think I'll probably do it again, but this time I will only fill them 3/4 full and will not tighten the lid until it has frozen. Thanks for the tips!

                1 Reply
                1. re: JudiMorrison
                  leahvh01 RE: JudiMorrison Sep 8, 2009 05:41 PM

                  i have used mason jars in the freezer usually with no problem. Occasionally upon thawing they will crack, not sure why. Love to freeze home made soup this way. I have thawed them in the microwave on the defrost level, again with no problem, but i let the jar rest for a few minutes between zaps until it is thawed enough to pour the contents out.

                2. j
                  Jitterbug RE: serious Sep 8, 2009 08:48 PM

                  Many of the typical Ball and Kerr canning jars are made to be also used in the freezer. They state that the ones with straight sides are the best to freeze in. Avoid using jars with narrower lids and "shoulders".

                  1. r
                    rnhuber RE: serious Nov 28, 2012 04:26 PM

                    I wouldn't do it, unless the glass containers are specifically made for freezing. I make a lot of bone broths and soups in the winter. A process that takes 3 days to do right. In the past year I've had 5 large mason jars crack on me in the freezer. The first time, I guess I overfilled, so the second time I left a very large (or so I thought) space for expansion, and left them to freeze without lids, and chilled them first in the fridge, but they STILL ended up breaking! I like using glass, as opposed to plastic, but this is a huge pain in the butt. After all the time I put into making these soups, and then they were either ruined or had to be very, VERY carefully salvaged. No one wants to eat glass shards. I probably should have thrown it all in the trash, but I couldn't bear it.

                    I'm wondering if maybe the slightly smaller mouths of these jars may have forced the pressure of the expanding liquid to push outward as well as upward. But honestly I don't care to test this again. I'm over it. I'm never freezing in random glass containers ever again.

                    1. foodieX2 RE: serious Nov 28, 2012 04:40 PM

                      I use mason jars for freezing all my liquids. Plastic container have always squeaked me out, the way the stain and hold onto oil no matter how you wash them. But I am weirdo.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: foodieX2
                        sedimental RE: foodieX2 Nov 28, 2012 07:09 PM

                        I am a weirdo too. I save good glass jars and lids , in addition to a variety of mason jars, and freeze in them. If they break- no big deal. They are safe, economical and easy to use. Weirdo's unite! LOL.

                        1. re: sedimental
                          foodieX2 RE: sedimental Nov 29, 2012 04:18 AM

                          :) Woo hoo!

                      2. s
                        sandylc RE: serious Nov 28, 2012 07:40 PM

                        I have frozen my stocks in mason jars for years. Only a couple have cracked - before I learned that the fill level must be a minimum of one inch below the shoulder of the jar. Also, they sell plastic lids for mason jars - I use those and love them.

                        Use the same lids and jars to store whole grains in the freezer.

                        1. John E. RE: serious Nov 28, 2012 10:02 PM

                          We freeze stock in empty .5 liter water bottles. They stack well in the freezer, are easy to thaw in the refrigerator, counter, or in a sink of hot water if you're pressed for time, and won't break if you drop them.

                          Show Hidden Posts