National Frozen Food Day: How to Celebrate It and the Best Food to Buy

Have you heard about National Frozen Food Day but aren't sure what it is? Ronald Reagan created this holiday to celebrate frozen foods that make cooking dinner for the family easy.

The last thing busy parents employed outside the home wanted to do after a long day at work was cooking a full meal to feed everyone. Frozen foods made it easier by providing people with whole frozen meals, tv dinners, and pre-cooked ingredients.

Here's everything you need to know about National Frozen Food Day and some of the best frozen foods to buy to celebrate it.

The History of Frozen Food

In 1984, President Ronald Reagan celebrated his love of frozen food and the time it allowed him to spend with his wife since it made food prep easier. So, he declared March 6 as National Frozen Food Day.

It may have been a holiday that no one remembered if it wasn't for the people with a stake in the frozen food industry, the companies that sold it. In fact, the National Frozen and Refrigerated Foods Association declared the whole month of March Frozen Food Month.

Frozen food has come a long way since the first scientists started working on a method to flash-freeze foods without losing flavor and quality in the 1920s.

Clarence Frank Birdseye II took frozen food to the next level when he set up Birdseye Seafoods and received the first patent for his freezing process for frozen foods in 1927.

So, where did he get the idea for his patent? In 1912, he was a broke college student that needed to make more money, so he traveled up to Labrador in Canada to trap and trade furs. That's when he saw the Inuit people rapidly freezing the caribou or fish after hunting.

In 1954, Gerry Thomas invented the first frozen dinner. But the TV dinners back then took approximately 25 minutes to reheat or cook. Still, it was a convenient option to get food on the table or the TV dinner tray and allow families to spend more quality time together.

Frozen foods have now evolved into delicious entrees, desserts, lunches, breakfasts, frozen fruits, and frozen vegetables that are ingrained in the modern life of the American people. From fruit for frozen smoothies to delicious frozen pizza, now you can get just about any food frozen.

What Was the First Frozen Food?

On March 6, 1930, the Birds Eye company sent the first frozen food product - spinach - for testing to Davison's Market in Springfield, Massachusetts. Clarence Birdseye was a true pioneer of the frozen food movement.

How You Can Observe National Frozen Food Day

Now that you know the history of National Frozen Food Day let's talk about some of the ways you can celebrate it.

Go to the Grocery Store

One of the first things you can do is take a trip down the frozen food aisle. Frozen food companies continue to come up with new food innovations that cook fast and taste great.

From desserts to full meals, the frozen section of your grocery store has everything you need to celebrate the holiday with healthy frozen meals. And you can splurge on something decadent like frozen chocolate-covered bananas.

Best Frozen Food Items to Buy

Many frozen foods are much healthier than canned foods that are stripped of nutrition with preservatives added. And some frozen foods may not be the healthiest but are simply too delicious to pass up.

Here are some of the best frozen foods to buy to celebrate Frozen Food Month.

  • Berries
  • Peaches
  • Pineapples
  • Mango
  • Cauliflower
  • Carrots
  • Broccoli
  • Ground beef
  • Chicken
  • Frozen Meatballs
  • Frozen Shrimp
  • Jimmy Deans Delights Turkey Sausage Breakfast Bowl
  • Eggland's Best Three Cheese Omelets
  • Amy's Black Beans & Tomatoes Breakfast Burrito
  • Kashi Sweet Potato Quinoa Bowl
  • Cali'flour Foods Cauliflower Flatbread
  • Kashi Blueberry Waffles
  • Amy's Apple Toaster Pops
  • Skinny Cow Simply Amazing Salted Caramel Pretzel
  • Smart One's Canadian Style Turkey Bacon English Muffin Sandwich
  • Healthy Choice Chicken Fajita Bowl
  • Lean Cuisine Four Cheese Cannelloni
  • Birds Eye Whole Grain Brown Rice
  • Kashi Stone-Fired Thin Crust Pizza with Mushrooms and Spinach
  • Bagel Bites - Cheese and Pepperoni
  • Wyman's Just Fruit & Greek Yogurt Bites
  • Newman's Own Thin and Crispy Uncured Pepperoni Pizza
  • Michelina's Macaroni & Cheese Bake
  • Bertolli Mediterranean Style Chicken Rigatoni, Broccoli
  • Trader Joe's Chicken Tikka Masala
  • Saffron Road Vegetable Pad Thai
  • Devour Buffalo Chicken Mac & Cheese
  • SeaPak Selections Alaskan Salmon Burgers

Get Your Frozen Foods Education

Celebrate National Frozen Food Day by educating your family on frozen foods. It may seem like a dull topic, but you can buy TV dinners or a delicious frozen meal and research what you buy.

Make it a history lesson for everyone and help everyone understand how life was before frozen food was invented.

Here are some fun frozen food facts:

While Swanson didn't create the first frozen dinner, the company did coin the phrase we all know - "TV dinner." They were able to identify the food trend by launching an advertising campaign.

Myth - Fresh foods are better for you than frozen foods. A 2017 study illustrated that there were no significant differences between vitamins in frozen or fresh produce. And the study discovered that frozen foods were better than fresh produce refrigerated for five days as it loses nutrients over time.

Marie Callender was an actual person. In the 1940s, she moved to South Dakota and married at 17 years old. It was a difficult time period, and to follow her dream of owning a business, she sold the family's car and rented a Quonset Hut to make pies.

Tator tots were invented to reduce food waste. Ore-Ida, the company best known for crinkle-cut fries, wanted to solve the problem of the leftover pieces of potato they had after cutting the fries. They soon found out that they could use these pieces in a new product, so they mashed the leftover pieces into tater tots.

Myth - Food sold past its sell-by date can't be frozen. This date is not an indicator of whether food is safe or not. It simply lets retailers know how long they can display food before removing it from the shelves. Most grocery stores sell food past its expiration at a large discount.

Throw a TV Dinner Party

Once you go to the grocery store, you can plan your frozen meal for the whole family. Decorate the table and create fact cards with fun food facts that will surprise the whole family.

You can even plan to have a frozen meal once a week throughout March or even make it a tradition and do it regularly the rest of the year. Designate a night for a delicious frozen meal or TV dinner.

Or try hosting a TV dinner party with friends and make it a tradition. There's always a reason to celebrate something, even things as simple as frozen foods.

Make Your Own Frozen Food

One of the best ways to reduce food waste is to make your own frozen food. Cook a large pot of soup, pan of lasagna, or other food and freeze part of it, so it doesn't go to waste.

Many people take a Sunday or another day of the week to meal prep freezer meals. That way, they have easy dinners they can dump in a crockpot or Instant Pot while they're at work or when they get home.

You can have a delicious homecooked meal straight from the freezer with planning.

Give a Gift Card to the Grocery Store

Celebrate National Frozen Food Day by giving grocery store gift cards to friends and family. Grocery gift cards are one of the most useful presents you can give someone.

Gift Card Granny has a large selection of gift cards for some of the most popular brands like Walmart or Whole Foods. So, make it a gift-giving holiday like Christmas.

Eat Frozen Food for Every Meal

One of the best ways to celebrate this holiday is to eat something frozen for every meal. Have frozen waffles for breakfast, frozen taquitos or a burrito for lunch, and a frozen pizza or another entree for supper.

Bertolli makes some great frozen skillet meals, and SeaPak has all kinds of seafood options for protein. You can find just about any food frozen and enjoy the benefits of a pre-cooked meal frozen for convenience.

Final Thoughts on National Frozen Food Day

Imagine how life would be without the invention of frozen foods, and you can see the importance of National Frozen Food Month. And after hundreds of years of cooking food the old-fashioned way, it's no wonder Ronald Reagan designated March 6th as National Frozen Food Day.

Fast food saves time, and there are plenty of nutritional options available in dinners, breakfasts, lunches, meat, fruits, vegetables, and more. It's easy to see why frozen food was so revolutionary to people when it was first invented.

How are you going to celebrate National Frozen Food Day?