Let’s talk freezer meals!
I’m not talking about those box meals in your local grocery store’s freezer section. I’m talking wholesome, healthy, KID-FRIENDLY freezer meals! I got into freezer meals a little over a year ago because dinner time was the HARDEST part of my day! With multiple children running around, who were usually cranky from a full day of play, when it was time for dinner – it was a nightmare! There were nights I would throw a frozen pizza in the oven and heat up a bag of broccoli and call it a night! (Don’t judge me because you know we have all been there a time or two). 🙂 I decided there had to be a better solution to deal with this constant dilemma. I wanted to find a way to still provide my family with a healthy, home cooked meals that didn’t both break the bank and require 2 hours in the kitchen prepping, cooking and cleaning. So, I did what any good, respectable mother would do…I headed online of course!
Before we get to online recipes, I want to briefly share about Freezer Meal 101.
What are Freezer Meals and Freezer Meal Prep?
The idea behind freezer meal prep is to always have healthy and affordable meal options available in your freezer. It’s a great way to plan in advance, save money on groceries, and avoid the extra costs associated with take-out meals or dining out. Having meals in your freezer prepped and ready to heat will bring peace to your mealtime and remove the stress of the last minute feeling just before dinner time when you are forced to ponder that constant question of “what’s for dinner?”.
How Does it Work?
You take 1 – 2 days to buy your ingredients, prep your food, and then cook it and assemble it into freezer safe dishes or pans to be used as you need. When you are ready to eat, place a meal from the freezer to your fridge the night before so it’s thawed for you to heat up the next day. You can also pull it out of the freezer the same day and to let it thaw out completely on a flat surface.
What Are the Benefits?
Saving time by cooking only 1 or 2 days, instead of every single day. Saving money (and saving on your grocery bill) when you buy ingredients in bulk to assemble the meals. Items are cheaper when you buy in bulk and you are not wasting food because you are preparing several meals at one time. Save frustration by always having a meal in the freezer to pull out when you have run out of ideas or time—or both! Another great benefit is always having a meal on hand to take a friend who may have just had a baby, or been in the hospital. In my opinion, freezer meals really are the BEST THING EVER!
Now back to online recipe hunting. Here is the thing about searching on Pinterest, Facebook, etc., you will get flooded with a TON of different recipes and ideas. A lot of those recipes being ones that you piece together raw and still have to actually cook the day you want to eat it. I don’t know about you, but to me that defeats the whole purpose of what I’m trying to do here. I want meals ready to just be thrown into the oven (or crockpot/slow cooker), eat, enjoy and then just throw that pan away! As the new #AccidentalCookingMami for Mami of Multiples, I am sharing below two of my favorite and easiest freezer meal recipes to try for yourself.
These recipes are all tried personally by my family and are both hubby, and more importantly, KID APPROVED! The best part is I’ve already gone through all the fails for you so you can take confidence in what you are preparing won’t be thrown in the trash and Pizza Hut being called at 7 o’clock at night with screaming children at your feet! You are welcome! 🙂
Also, be sure check out our Facebook Live video at the top of this post so you can see how to prepare these two meals at home.
Freezer Meal: Burrito Pie Recipe
Freezer Meal: Chicken Parmesan Casserole Recipe
To help you prepare for the meals, we complied a grocery list. Click on the picture below to print out the grocery list.
Plan ahead and check your local grocery stores for coupons or BOGO (buy one – get one free coupons) so you can save when purchasing ingredients. You can sign up to your grocery store’s email list for coupons or use coupon apps like Ibotta, Checkout 51, Flipp, SavingStar, RetailMeNot, SnipSnap, Grocery IQ and Grocery Smarts.
Use Reynolds aluminum foil or aluminum pan lids to cover dishes before placing in freezer.
Use disposable trays or pans for easier clean up.
Once you cover the dish with foil to place in the freezer, put tape on the top of the foil and write out the reheating instructions so you won’t have to remember when you are ready to use.
I hope these freezer meal recipes are a benefit to your family as they have been to mine. Please feel free to leave a comment below, ask any questions and/or connect online using the hashtag #AccidentalCookingMami
Find more easy recipes at bit.ly or mamiofmultiples.com/category/food