If you have room in your home for one, a deep freezer can be so handy! They’re great for bulk shopping at the supermarket or club store… Good job you bargain hunter, you! They’re also ideal for stashing a bountiful harvest from your summer garden… Congrats, green thumb!
But besides providing all that extra space for food storage so you can make fewer visits to the grocery store, is there really any cost benefit to owning a deep freezer? Are they even worth it?
How Much Energy Do Deep Freezers Use?
Today’s deep freezers are better insulated and more energy efficient than those clunky old ones our grandparents had in their basements. So, after you buy one, don’t be surprised by if you see less freezer burn and lower electricity costs than you expected.
If you’re really serious about keeping your energy costs low, ENERGY STAR-Certified deep freezers earn their keep by being at least 10% more energy efficient than the minimum federal standard requires. According to energystar.gov estimates, a chest freezer with their certification costs less than $30 per year to run while a certified upright freezer costs less than $50 per year to run. That seems like a bargain!
(For comparison, a 21.5 cubic foot chest freezer that’s more than a decade old costs more than $75 per year to run while a similar capacity and age upright freezer costs more than $120 per year to run. )
Can You Save on Food Costs with a Deep Freezer?
Yes, of course you can! The exact amount you can save is hard to say, though, since everyone has different needs when it comes to food and cooking habits. The tips below—tips that require the storage capacity of a deep freezer—are just the most basic ways households make use of their deep freezers to save money. If you know your way around a grocery store, you can get an idea of how much each tip will save you, especially if you have a large family.
Buy seasonal produce. Fruits and veggies are cheapest when there’s a big supply. You can freeze them for smoothies, baking, stews, and sides. No canning skills required!
Stock up on fresh meat when it’s on sale and freeze what you won’t use right away. Also consider bone-in items that can be stretched to make broth at a later date. Freeze the bones or freeze the broth—or both!
When ingredients are on sale, buy enough to pre-prep favorite meals. Scratch-made casseroles and sides are cheaper than packaged ones and they’re perfect for freezing. Why put all that effort into one lasagna when you could make 2 or more?
You may not even realize that there are ways to freeze dairy products, eggs, cakes, and breads, too. It may take some research and trial-and-error to get them just right, but that effort will translate into cost savings and happy tummies over just a short time.
“Flip Your Fridge Calculator.” ENERGY STAR. Accessed July 8, 2021. https://www.energystar.gov/products/appliances/refrigerators/flip-your-fridge. Calculations made using the national average cost of .133 per kilowatt hour by residential users.