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Items placed in my freezer take on an awful flavor that tastes a lot like freezer burn, even ice cubes. If I put items in the freezer over-night and it isn't tightly covered, this problem occurs.

With the ice cubes I can rinse them off to eliminate the bad flavor, but I'd prefer to find the root cause and fix it.

Any ideas/suggestions are quite welcome.

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3 Answers

up vote 9 down vote accepted

Freezer burn occurs when water molecules in food gather in a colder location in your freezer—whether that be the sides of your freezer or even other foods.

Tips to prevent freezer burn:

  • Don't put hot food directly into your freezer, let it cool first
  • Put your food in air-tight containers
  • The longer food is in the freezer the greater your chance of freezer burn

I'm going to go out on a limb though and guess that—at least with your ice cubes may just be acquiring a "freezer smell" from the other foods in your freezer. If I don't use the cubes in my freezer fast enough they end up tasting really unpleasant. Give your freezer a good cleaning and cover your ice cubes with saran wrap and this should help stop the funny smells/tastes.

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The baking soda "trick" is little more than a clever marketing ploy and popular myth. Although it might absorb a very small amount of odour, it's really very ineffective. –  Aaronut Aug 19 '11 at 15:43
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Hmm, good to know. Seems as if using activated charcoal to control odors is a more accepted method now. newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/chem00/chem00388.htm –  Vecta Aug 19 '11 at 15:50
    
Excellent point @Vecta, I was wondering what 'freezer smell taste' was. –  Katey HW Aug 19 '11 at 17:41
    
I'll try the activated charcoal. Thank you to everyone to contributed. –  Brian Vandenberg Aug 19 '11 at 17:42
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Here are some tips for preventing freezer burn:

http://www.wikihow.com/Prevent-Freezer-Burn

The most important thing is to keep the temperature of your freezer constant and as low as possible (below 0 degrees Fahrenheit).

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I found out that the "freezer" taste comes from the free-on(?) used in frost-free freezer's.

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Freon (a DuPont brand name, commonly for dichlorodifluoromethane aka R-12) is (a) no longer used, under the Montreal Protocol; (b) is contained inside the refrigeration system, and isn't released into the freezer compartment (and, if it were due to a leak, the freezer would cease to function); (c) the smell of freon is entirely inconsistent with freezer taste; (d) its very much a gas, even at freezer temperatures; (e) when it was used, it was used in both self-defrosting and non-self-defrosting freezers (and air conditioners, etc.) –  derobert May 20 '12 at 5:38
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