Since there are a lot of people who often wonder about whether or not they can freeze the signature and delicious Sunday dinner roast. I decided to share the good news, that, yes. You can, in fact, freeze a roast dinner easily, and I am going to share this detailed article on how to successfully freeze your roast dinner and enjoy it like the freshly made one with minimal effort.
People are rightly so to question whether they can freeze roast dinner. Nothing feels better than to start my week with a heavenly home-cooked Sunday roast dinner. And I know how discouraging it could get to cook this big meal once every week. That’s why freezing might be the best option you have to keep this flavorful tradition alive.
Can you freeze a plated roast dinner?
You absolutely can. Just make sure it is cold enough or at least has the same room temperature before placing it in the freezer.
All you have got to do is place it in a foil tray or any regular dish, cover it, then put it into the freezer.
How to freeze a roast dinner?
When it comes to freezing roast dinner, you will have one of two options. Either freeze a roast dinner plate as a whole including all its different components (meat, roasted potatoes, vegetables, and gravy) which will be ready once you want to take it off the freezer.
Or you can freeze each of these components separately so that you can make other meals with them instead of roast dinner.
- Once you have made sure that your roast dinner is at least at room temperature, cover the plate containing the roast dinner with cling film or aluminum foil. Or you can just pour the contents of the plate into a microwave-safe container and cover it tightly.
- Label the container or the plate with its contents and date of cooking so that it is easier for you to later distinguish it from the other food stored in the freezer.
Benefits of Freezing Roast Dinners
Freezing a roast dinner offers several advantages:
Cook Once, Eat Multiple times.
Roasting meat and vegetables takes time and effort. Freezing a roast dinner allows you to get multiple meals out of one cooking session. Simply defrost and reheat individual portions whenever you want a quick roast dinner.
Cooking roast dinners in bulk and freezing the leftovers saves money compared to cooking fresh roasts every time. Buying large cuts of meat is more economical than buying individual portions.
Reduce Food waste.
Roast dinners often lead to leftovers. Freezing the extra portions prevents food waste and spoilage.
Having frozen roast dinners on hand saves time. You can pull a meal straight from the freezer to reheat on a busy weeknight instead of spending over an hour cooking.
Enjoy Seasonal Foods Year-round.
When certain meats or produce are in peak season or on sale, make a large roast dinner and freeze it to enjoy the seasonal or sale prices even when that item is out of season.
Tips for Freezing Different Roast Dinner Components
While the overall method is the same, there are some freezing tips for specific parts of a roast dinner:
- Freeze roasts and sliced meat in freezer bags or airtight containers.
- Prevent freezer burn by minimizing exposure to air.
- Beef, lamb, and pork roasts freeze well for 2–3 months.
- Chicken and turkey roast best up to 1 month. Ground meats in just 1-2 weeks.
Gravy and Sauces
- Cool gravy and pan sauces fully before freezing.
- Freeze in bags, containers, or ice cube trays for easy portions.
- Stir frequently while reheating to prevent scorching.
- Blanch vegetables first in boiling water if you plan to freeze cooked vegetables.
- Roasted vegetables freeze better than boiled ones.
- Frozen boiled potatoes will get mushy. Roast them first for a better texture.
Yorkshire Puddings and Rolls
- Allow baked goods to cool fully before freezing in bags.
- Reheat directly in the oven from frozen to restore crispiness.
How long can roast dinner stay in the freezer?
You can keep the roast dinner in the freezer for 3 months without any change in taste. However, some of the component’s texture might be affected a little.
For example, gravy can turn a bit runny after reheating. As well as the roasted potatoes, which might not be the same as before freezing. But they do retain the same delicious taste and warmness!
How to defrost a roast dinner?
Just transfer the plate or container containing the frozen roast dinner from the freezer to the fridge to thaw overnight.
I prefer to allow the frozen roast dinner to defrost completely before reheating it so that I don’t risk any chance of shattering my plate or dish due to extreme heat changes.
How to reheat a roast dinner?
The oven is my favorite option because it guarantees the perfect heating of every component of the dinner roast. However, it might be the slowest one, as I have to wait for the oven to first preheat before I place my defrosted dinner roast.
Make sure to cover the roast with aluminum foil before heating it to avoid its drying. Also, notice that some things like the Yorkshire pudding, might take slightly less time to reheat than other things like the meat. So, bear in mind to remove it once it reheats enough.
Reheating roast dinner in the microwave is also another option that you have. It is also quicker than the oven method. Just don’t forget to cover the plate with cling film before placing it in the microwave.
You will know your roast is ready and safe to eat once the internal temperature reaches 75°c for at least 30 seconds or 80°c for at least 6 seconds.
Don’t attempt to freeze and reheat your roast dinner more than once!
Frequently Asked Questions About Freezing Roast Dinners
How long does a frozen roast dinner last?
For best quality and food safety, consume frozen roast dinners within 2 to 3 months of freezing. Cooked meats and poultry should be eaten within 1–2 months. Mark your calendar when freezing meals to eat within these time frames.
Can you freeze cooked beef, pork, lamb, turkey, or chicken for roast dinners?
Yes, cooked roasts and sliced meats for roast dinners can safely be frozen. Beef, lamb, and pork roasts freeze well for 2–3 months. Turkey and chicken maintain better quality for up to 1 month frozen.
What is the best way to freeze gravy?
First, cool the gravy completely after cooking. Then freeze in freezer bags, airtight containers, or ice cube trays in meal-sized portions. Frozen gravy cubes can be popped right into the microwave or pan for reheating.
Is it better to freeze cooked vegetables or roast them fresh?
Pre-roasted vegetables maintain a better texture when reheated from frozen. If freezing cooked vegetables, blanch them briefly in boiling water first. Frozen boiled potatoes tend to get mushy compared to roast potatoes.
Can you freeze and reheat Yorkshire puddings?
Yes, allow Yorkshire puddings to cool fully after cooking, then place them in freezer bags. Frozen Yorkshire puddings can go straight into the oven from frozen and will recrisp during reheating.
What is the best way to reheat a frozen roast dinner?
For food safety, always thaw roast dinners overnight in the refrigerator before reheating. Reheat in a 375°F oven until fully hot, or use the microwave with lower power and stirring. Check with a food thermometer that meats reach 165°F minimum.
Is it safe to refreeze a roast dinner after reheating?
For quality and food safety reasons, do not refreeze roast dinner leftovers after reheating fully. Only freeze portions that have never been reheated. Safely reheat frozen dinners just once.
Get Freezer-Friendly with Roast dinners.
Freezing well-prepared roast dinners lets you enjoy their delicious convenience at any time. Proper freezing, storage, and reheating keep these meals safe while maintaining their hearty, homemade taste.
With strategic bulk cooking and freezing, you can whip up roast dinner classics to have on hand whenever your family is craving comfort food.
Hi, I’m Julie, the passionate foodie and founder of Juliesfamilykitchen.com. I created this blog out of a drive to prove someone wrong, and then I realized how much I truly enjoy cooking and trying new recipes. In my free time, when I’m not running around after my kids or spending quality time with my partner, you can usually find me in the kitchen experimenting with new dishes.