In general, the TSA has no objections to travellers bringing fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables in their carry-on or checked luggage. The TSA does not have any limits on these foods as long as they are in solid form, like as apples or small carrots. It is recommended that you don't fill up your bag with fruit, instead divide it into several packets. This will help avoid any unnecessary delays at security.
However, some fruits and vegetables can pose a threat if they become damaged or go bad while aboard the flight. For example, apple cores contain around 40% cellulose which can be converted into glucose when heated with acid. This could be potentially harmful if enough of it gets into the bloodstream. The same goes for grapes and peaches which contain enzymes that can break down into acetic acid and phenols, respectively. These compounds are also found in vinegar and wine, respectively, so they're not dangerous in small quantities but they could cause issues if passengers were to bring them on board.
Some fruits are completely safe to fly with but most travelers should still check with the airline before heading to the airport to make sure. Fruits and vegetables that are allowed on flights include: bananas, grapes, apples, pears, oranges, tangerines, lemons, limes, pineapples, melons, onions, potatoes, and carrots.
If that's the case, you'll be able to transport almost any variety of fresh fruit through airport security in your carry-on luggage. Fresh fruits, both whole and cut-up, are permitted at the TSA screening checkpoint; dried fruits are also permitted. Certain types of fresh fruit may need to be screened separately from other foods.
The best thing to do is choose healthy fruits that won't affect the quality of your flight or travel experience. Fruits that are ripe but not overripe are preferred by airlines because they don't require special handling or storage. Avoid green vegetables as well as fruits with spots or mold on them. Also keep in mind that some people have allergies or sensitivities to certain fruits.
Here's a list of the most common fruits and where they can be brought on a plane: Apple, pear, and citrus fruits are the only ones allowed on all flights. Other than that, you can bring any variety of fresh fruit through security. They don't need to be packed in ice nor refrigerated, but they should be packed in a plastic bag or container with holes for air circulation.
You should declare any fruits that might be considered hazardous items, such as mangoes and papayas. These should never be shipped in an unrefrigerated cargo hold and must be packed in a plastic bag with all the air removed by a vacuum sealer.
Meat, fish, vegetables, and other non-liquid food items are permitted in both checked and carry-on luggage. If the food is stored in a cooler or other container containing ice or ice packs, the ice or ice packs must be totally frozen when it is taken through screening. They cannot contain any trace of liquid.
The only exception to this rule is if the airline allows it with prior written approval. Some airlines may have special provisions for certain foods such as meat, fish, milk, eggs, and honey. Other airlines leave it up to their baggage handlers who may have access to other foods not allowed in passenger cabins. Still others have no restrictions at all. You should always check with the carrier before traveling with regard to frozen foods.
The reason frozen foods require special treatment is that they can take off heat during travel, which could cause other foods with which they're packed to go bad faster than normal. This could result in the smell of those foods being released into the air, which would be unpleasant for passengers nearby and could lead to further restrictions being imposed on frozen goods.
So yes, you can take frozen food on an airplane provided the meal you are packing doesn't contain any liquids other than water from beverages served in flight.