Today has been a weird day. I woke up EXHAUSTED and even texted my husband that I could hardly keep my eyes open and would probably be laying in bed all day [like I did yesterday]. I cleaned the kitchen a little then had to pick my 4-year-old up at preschool. I felt guilty that we'd be stuck in the house all day and instead of picking up a quick lunch, we opted to grab some groceries at Target. I was about to go in and got this urge to cook a few freezer meals I made when I was pregnant with Charlotte [now 2 1/2] so we grabbed the ingredients for those as well as the basics. The next text to my husband was a little different -- going from complete exhaustion to a photo of all the food I had cooked was kind of surprising to him!So I thought I'd link to some of my favorite freezer meals and some tips I've picked up along the way. I'm a HUGE fan of freezer cooking. I know space can be an issue for a lot of people and I have a few tips to save space but not many, just a heads up!
- Today I made these chicken enchiladas. They are so good! I just freeze the sauce separately and since we aren't huge fans of leftovers, I always split recipes in half and either cook half for dinner and freeze half or just freeze both halves.
- Breakfast items are a must when you have littles to take care of on top of a newborn. Not that cereal every day won't work. Cereal works and we've done that too but every once in a while it's nice to pull something out of the freezer and feel like a rockstar mom! I make these banana muffins and add chocolate chips. I also always double or triple waffles + pancakes anytime I make them and freeze the extras. With muffins, I fill the liners with batter and stick them in the freezer. Once they're set, I take them out and put them in a gallon size bag. Then you can either take out and thaw the morning you want to cook them or you can just add a couple of minutes to the cook time! Fresh muffins! Freezing cooked muffins works really well too though and with a newborn, it's nice to have some stuff that you don't have to do anything to!
- Pioneer Woman's chicken spaghetti is definitely a go to of mine! One tip I always do is I, once again, split the recipe in half but the nice thing about casseroles is you can put them in a gallon sized ziploc, lay flat in a pan and stick in the freezer. Takes up minimal space and you can stack meals on top of meals! It's great.
- This white chicken chili was a huge hit for our family and I snagged some of these from amazon for storage. They're super nice and I also use them for homemade spaghetti sauce. Make sure not to fill ALL the way to the top since liquids expand a little when frozen.
- Chicken rolls are always my go to for freezer meals! It reminds me of home and they are just so good. Freeze on a pan just before cooking then stack them in a gallon size freezer bag. Easy peasy!
- You can also freeze crock pot recipes all in one gallon size freezer bag. Pinterest has lots of great ideas!
- And last but not least...TREAT YOSELF with some frozen cookie dough that you can just take out and cook! Chocolate chip cookies are always a go to but you can freeze any kind!
I hope this helps some of you get started on freezer cooking! I know it's not for everyone but on hard days where I'm about to ask my husband to pick up take out, it's nice to get a win and be able to pull out a wholesome meal for your family! Please leave any freezer meal recipes/links in the comments, I'm always looking to expand my list!-LWPH