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Freezer Hacks for When It’s Just Too Hot Outside

All year round, in any season and at any time, the freezer is a magical thing. Come those steamy summer months, and it’s a true lifesaver. From storing pre-prepared snacks to offering a gust of cool air unlike anything else, the freezer is one kitchen item we find ourselves turning to quite a bit in the heat. There’s more to the freezer than just frosty cubes and bags of frozen peas, though. So, we put together some outside-the-(ice)-box ways to use this ubiquitous appliance.

Store your dairy (think cheese and butter)

Even in cool weather, soft cheese can be a bit tricky to slice. Add heat to the mix and it is near impossible. To make it easier to cut, stick it in the freezer for a few minutes so it firms up a bit. Then, you’re good to go for something sensational like our cheesy tomato tart.

We often store butter in the freezer over the fridge, as it absorbs fewer odors and keeps nice and cold for baking and cooking. We only recently realized that there’s another amazing advantage to keeping your butter really really cold: you can grate it. And why grate butter? Turns out, it incorporates quickly and well in baked goods and it softens in seconds. Ever struggle with spreading hard butter on toast? Grate it, and it’ll melt for you.

Pre-made smoothies

Few things are as refreshing on a hot summer’s day as a big, cold smoothie. We love to store smoothie ingredients bagged together in the freezer for an AM no-brainer. Some of our favorite ones laced with kale are here.

Grapes

If you haven’t had a frozen grape, wait until you try your new favorite frosty fruit. Freezing grapes turns them into little icy bursts of sweetness ideal for snacking on and cooling down.

Candy + chocolate

In the summer, chocolate tends to melt very quickly, so just stick it in the freezer! Make sure it’s in an airtight container, though, and allow it to come to room temperature if you’re using it to bake.

Bowls

Want to keep your ice cream bowls and salad plates extra frosty? Throw them in the freezer for a while. So easy.

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Ice cube tray magic

We’ve rhapsodized about ice cube trays before, as they are a perfect place to store coffee, juice, and herbed butters among many other things. But we’re adding a few more ideas to the mix including mashed avocado and matcha lattes! When storing mashed avocado, simply purée or mash it, then spoon it into the trays. This will be the perfect cold item in smoothies, sauces, dressings, and guacamole. And, for an ice-cold matcha latte, no better way than to pop the cubes straight into the glass—no ice required!

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