How to Freeze Anything in a Mason Jar | Real Food Whole Life

How to Freeze Anything in a Mason Jar

five mason jars with metal lids and taped labels

Looking for how to freeze anything in a mason jar? Then you’re in the right place!

Mason jars are a beautifully simple solution when it comes to storage. From freezing soups and stews, to taking leftovers to work, to using mason jars to organize your pantry. Your options are endless.

Read on for step-by-step instructions and a FAQ for how to freeze anything in a mason jar, plus how to use mason jars to store just about anything.

small glass mason jar with ladle and funnel on white countertop

Imagine your freezer filled with hearty, nourishing soups and stews ready to be defrosted for a quick lunch on the fly. 

Then imagine a fridge filled with pre-prepped grains, veggies, and proteins, as well as a few mason jar salads ready to throw in your bag on the way out the door.

This scenario is easier than you think; and it all starts with the simple mason jar.

Mason jars are a workhorse in the kitchen, and are the perfect simplified storage solution because they can be used in so many different ways.

They’re durable, are plastic-free, inexpensive, and work perfectly in the pantry, fridge and in the freezer.

As a bonus, the tight sealing lids means you can take soups and stews with you on-the-go without worrying about spills or leaks.

Read on for the step-by-step!

How to Store or Freeze Anything in a Mason Jar

1. Select the Right Size Mason Jar

For best results, use wide mouth mason jars to freeze one to two portions of soup, stews, or leftovers.

These are my favorite mason jars for freezing one to two servings Wide-Mouth 16-oz Mason Jars

Quart sized mason jars are a great size for storing larger amounts of leftovers, and are also a great choice for pantry organization or creating mason jar salads: Wide-Mouth Quart Mason Jar

2. Allow the Soup, Stew, or Main Dish to Cool

Avoid adding steaming hot liquid to the mason jar. Instead, allow the soup or stew to cool slightly before adding to the jar.

3. Transfer to the Mason Jar

Fill each mason jar with the soup, stew, or leftovers using a stainless steel ladle and wide mouth funnel.

The funnel prevents a mess and makes the process so much easier; definitely worth the small investment.

Again, a wide-mouth mason jar is your best best when it comes to freezing anything, especially when it comes to soups and stews.

This is my favorite Wide Mouth Funnel for filling mason jars to freeze.

4. Leave Enough Room

Be sure to leave at least a two inch clearance between the top of the jar and whatever you’re filling it with.

Remember, frozen liquids expand, so don’t overfill, or you will end up with a cracked jar.

5. Cool Completely in the Refrigerator

Screw on the lids and refrigerate the filled jars and allow to cool completely to avoid cracking. Do not skip this step, as freezing hot or warm liquids may cause the jar to crack.

6. Add a Label

Don’t forget to label your jars.

Particularly if you plan to store in the freezer, clear labeling will ensure you know what’s what.

Labeling couldn’t be easier: simply write the name of the item along with the date on a small piece of washi masking tape with a permanent marker.

Then affix the tape to the top of the lid and you’re good to go.

When you’ve used the contents of the jar remove the tape and wash the lid. 

7. Freeze the Mason Jars

Freeze contents for three to five months.

8. Bonus Tip: Mason Jar Lid Storage

Consider storing mason jar lids in a wire basket when not in use to keep things organized.

Mason and Canning Jar Freezing 101 & FAQs

Can you put mason jars in the freezer?

Yes! Check out steps 1-7 above for a step-by-step tutorial.

How do you keep Mason jars from breaking in the freezer?

Make sure you’re using a wide mouth jar like these Wide-Mouth 16-oz Mason Jars. Also make sure the liquid is cooled completely prior to freezing, and leave 1-2 inches of space between the liquid and the lid.

Can you freeze milk in a mason jar?

Yes. Follow the directions above to avoid jar breakage.

Can you freeze broth in a mason jar?

Yes. Follow the directions above to avoid jar breakage.

Can I freeze mason jars with metal lids?

Yes.

How can I avoid broken glass when freezing in jars? 

Make sure you’re using a wide mouth jar like these Wide-Mouth 16-oz Mason Jars. Also make sure the liquid is cooled completely prior to freezing, and leave 1-2 inches of space between the liquid and the lid.

I followed the directions and my mason jar still cracked in the freezer. What went wrong?

Double check that you were using wide mouth jars like these Wide-Mouth 16-oz Mason Jars that the liquid was completely cool, and that you left enough space between the liquid and the lid. If the jar still cracked, it was most likely an old jar with an existing crack, so it’s time to replace those jars!

Can I freeze cooked pasta, rice, or grains in a mason jar?

Absolutely! Again, just follow the steps above.

Disclosure: The post contains affiliate links, which means when you purchase an item through any of the links we’ll receive a small kickback at no additional cost to you, which helps me to continue to bring you quality content. Thank you so much for your support!

five mason jars with metal lids and taped labels
white basket filled with metal jar lids on white kitchen countertop

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28 comments to " How to Freeze Anything in a Mason Jar "

  • Stacy

    Wire basket to wrangle the lids, Yes! This is what I needed.

    • Robyn Downs

      Stacy, right?! It’s the simple things. Those lids were always driving me crazy and just designating a spot for them has made such a difference! 🙂

    • Sue Panganiban

      How do you thaw frozen soup in a mason jar

      • Robyn Downs

        Hi Sue, I’ve found that placing the frozen jar in the fridge and allowing it to defrost overnight works best. You can also try defrosting in the microwave on a low, defrost setting can also work.

  • Ashley

    I store our mason lids in a cardboard box. It isn’t pretty, but it was free! And it’s stashed away in the cupboard anyway so you never see it.

  • Laura

    I keep finding my lids get rust easily. Am I doing something wrong or how do I avoid this?

    • Niki

      I use little pieces of wax paper under the lid (you can keep them square or even cut them into a circle with pinking shears to make them look pretty). I found that it creates a tighter seal, and the lids stay clean (no extra washing).

  • Caroline

    What’s the best way to reheat the soup or a single portion of something I have frozen in a mason jar?

    • Robyn Downs

      A couple options, Caroline. First, you can use a microwave on defrost, then dump into a bowl and heat. If you’re rather not use a microwave, put the frozen jar in the fridge overnight, it should thaw within a day, or place in a jar of lukewarm water. Then reheat on the stove top!

  • Maria

    I found plastic lids to use on my wide mouth jars! These seem much easier to deal with then the rings. Come to find out they make a ton of attachments for mason jars, like honey sticks, coffee lids, spice lids..etc. 🙂 Im in Mason Jar Heaven! Thanks for the post!

  • Ashley Moo

    Can I store raw meat in Mason jars in my freezer?

    • Robyn Downs

      Ashley, yes, just as you’d use any freezable container, if you have raw meat it should work to freeze–keep in mind you’ll need to leave room at the top, as things expand when they freeze–to avoid cracked jars.

      • Dee

        I have several plastic lids for my wide mouth jars that I use to store pasta, rice, beans, even rubber bands in my cabinet. Can the plastic lids be used in the freezer? Thanks so much for the info.Even though I love using Mason Jars for storage I never would have thought about using them in the freezer.

        • Robyn Downs

          Hi Dee, I haven’t tried with plastic jars but I image they will work just as well as the metal version, provided the plastic is freezer safe!

  • Kirsty Hunter

    how long do you think turkey chili will last in a sealed mason jar in the fridge?

  • Kirsty Hunter

    how long will turkey chili in a sealed mason jar last in the fridge?

  • Zoe Campos

    I never knew that mason jars can be a storage solution and initially thought that they’re only for decor. My brother and I are both occupied at the university and we don’t have time to prepare our own meals. Maybe we can buy lots of mason jars and prepare everything during the weekend so we can just easily grab our breakfast every morning before leaving.

  • peggy

    Has anyone experienced a thumb size mound form on top of their bone broth after being frozen which has ice crystals on it? If I could attach a photo I would. I left probably an inch to inch and a half space at the top of the jars so they wouldn’t crack because I have had a problem with that in the past. Someone thought this ice crystal was formed because I left too much space at the top. Is that possible? Totally prized. Any help would be useful. Thank you.

    • Robyn Downs

      Hi Peggy, did you put the broth in the freezer warm, or was it completely cool first? Other question is whether you used a wide mouth mason jar?

  • Monique Seguin

    You can also buy a vacuum sealing accessory to pull out the air from a mason jar to store cereal, rice and dry goods like nuts if you have a FoodSaver.

  • Michael

    Can you vacuum seal the Mason jar after it’s cooled before you freeze it

    • Robyn Downs

      Hi Michael, I checked the Food Saver website and they say: Even though your mason jars are freezer-safe, glass can still become very fragile when cold. You’ll want to wait until the liquid is frozen solid before taking the jar back out and vacuum sealing. Doing this after will protect the substances from freezer burn. Hope this helps!

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