If your house loses power from time to time, especially if you live in an area where storms knock your electricity out, then you will definitely want to know if the items in your freezer could have thawed and refrozen after the power returned.

There aren’t many ways of knowing how long the power was out for unless you have security cameras and you get alerts when they go offline and back online.

But even then, if it’s just a couple of hours, your food should be fine but here are two tips to help you tell if your frozen food is safe to eat when you return home from a trip.

I place a couple of ice cubes in a Ziploc bag and place it in the freezer. If, when I return home, the ice cubes have melted, I’ll be able to tell. Because even if they thaw and refreeze, I’ll be left with a frozen puddle in the bag.

Another tip is from Sheila Pulanco Russell, whose post went viral when she suggested freezing a mug of water, placing a quarter on top of the ice and returning the cup to the freezer.

If, when you return from your trip, “the quarter has fallen to the bottom of the cup that means all the food defrosted and you should throw it out. But if the quarter is either on the top or in the middle of the cup then your food may still be ok.”

Warning: Don’t try this trick with a good ceramic mug. Mine cracked when the water expanded so I now use a paper cup (pictured above), which does the trick.

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2 Comments On "How to Tell If Your Frozen Food Is Safe to Eat When You Return From a Trip"
  1. Gra Woody|

    If you have an icemaker, another clue will be the solid block of ice in the bin. Cubes won’t refreeze into their original shape again …

    1. Johnny Jet|

      Good thinking!

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